If one of your favourite films is Sideways and you take a trip to wine country chances are you will be infused with enthusiasm. I was. I accompanied a rather large group of friends and we sniffed and swirled and quaffed wine (Hunter Valley Shiraz is the shit), cooked and ate lots of food, listened to Jazz music, watched The Lion King (?) and I even had a personal crisis - resulting in a sit down and stare off into space (in this case a beautiful expanse of vineyards) moment. It was a great weekend.
I watched a lot of Italian Films. The highlights of the Festival (which actually doesn't finish until October 5, and then there are some 'back by popular demand' sessions returning for another week) were 20 Cigarettes, Corpo Celeste, Sorelle Mai and A Quiet Life - but easily the most popular have been The Ages of Love, Welcome to the South, A Family on the Verge and Escort in Love. The latter I also saw. It was fun. October 13-30 is the Greek Film Festival at Palace Cinemas Norton Street. It never ends.
It was hard to be enthusiastic about any new releases this month - the best (13 Assassins andProject Nim) I had already seen. But The Help, Submarine and Red Dog were all entertaining. The latter I watched a day after Eye of the Storm, the worst Australian film of the year, which is contrary to common opinion. What were they watching? October brings some awesomeness - Take Shelter, Midnight in Paris, Contagion and Drive at least.
October will also be my month for Godard. Having only seen Masculine Feminine and Pierrot Le Fou by the great French New Wave director, and with the recent LAMB: MOTM being Bande a part, I figure that was the inspiration I needed to get caught up - does anyone have any suggestions on where else to look in his resume? Breathless obviously. Alphaville? A Woman is a Woman? Les Carabiniers?
I did a lot of re-watching this month, with a number of individual urges - A History of Violence(because I watched A Quiet Life at the Italian Film Festival and decided I wanted a better ex-mafia story), Ronin (I got inspired by these great videos by Jim Emerson, where he breaks down action sequences in films), Stalker and Uncle Boonmee (just because), Knocked Up andThe 40 Year-Old Virgin (because I needed something light and funny, and wanted to be sure of what I thought of Judd Apatow) and Collateral (because I had written about Michael Mann all day and decided I needed to watch one of his films).
What I learned: 23 reviews in one month is too intense. I need a break - after this post, and after reviewing Crazy, Stupid, Love, it begins...
Counting Crazy, Stupid, Love, which will be the final film of the month, here are my 33 Films.
New Releases (Cinema) - One Day (Lone Scherfig, 2011), The Help (Tate Taylor, 2011), Super(James Gunn, 2010), Submarine (Richard Ayoade, 2010), The Eye of the Storm (Fred Schepisi, 2011), Red Dog (Kriv Stenders, 2011), The Sorcerer and the White Snake (Tony Ching Siu-ting, 2011), The Hunter (David Nettheim, 2011), The Whistleblower (Larysa Kondracki, 2010) andCrazy, Stupid, Love (2011)
Lavazza Italian Film Festival - A Quiet Life (Claudio Cupellini, 2010), 20 Cigarettes (Aureliano Amadei, 2010), Escort in Love (Massimiliano Bruno, 2010), Lost Kisses (Roberta Torre, 2010),Corpo Celeste (Alice Rohrwacher, 2011) and Sorelle Mai (Marco Bellochio, 2010)
First Viewing (DVD): The Wild Bunch (Sam Peckinpah, 1969), Fright Night (Tom Holland, 1985), Short Cuts (Robert Altman, 1993) and Volver (Pedro Almodovar, 2006)
Re-watched (DVD): The Apartment (Billy Wilder, 1960), Lancelot du lac [Lancelot of the Lake](Robert Bresson, 1974), Stalker (Andrei Tarkovsky, 1979), The Lion King (Roger Allers, Rob Minkoff, 1994), Ronin (John Frankenheimer, 1998), Mulholland Drive (David Lynch, 2001), Minority Report (Steven Spielberg, 2002), Sideways (Alexander Payne, 2004), Collateral(Michael Mann, 2004), A History of Violence (David Cronenberg, 2005), The 40 Year-Old Virgin(Judd Apatow, 2005), Knocked Up (Judd Apatow, 2007) and Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past Lives (Apitchatpong Weerasethakul, 2010)