Category Archives: Cannes

Review: The Wind That Shakes the Barley

WSBMASTER116.jpgWhither a Weekend Films Post?
I set out to write about what films to see this weekend and clearly I failed. It’s after midnight on Sunday morning and here I am with almost 600 words about Ken Loach’s The Wind that Shakes the Barley and fuck all about any of the other films I was going to recommend. I’ll get better at this “doing things at the right time” thing, I promise. So, then, take as you will, this longer than expected review of Ken Loach’s excellent offering (albeit a week or 2 late):

Ken Loach‘s beautiful and stirring epic of the years leading up to and including the Irish Civil War is the best film of the year to date and this 2006 Cannes Palm D’or winner is certain to be on many critics’ top ten lists, come December. Often criticized (not by me) for being heavy-handed with his politics, Loach is less so, here. While there’s no doubt as to who the bad guys are in the first part of the film, the lines are blurred once the story moves from British occupation to civil war. Loach and screenwriter Paul Laverty have personalized this historical drama with the story of Damien and Teddy O’Donovan, two brothers deep in the Irish resistance. Damien (Cillian Murphy) begins the film all set to leave for London to work as a doctor, while older brother Teddy (Padraic Delaney) is already a veteran member of the struggle against the British occupation. Two particularly vivid acts of brutality by the Black & Tans, paramilitary squads drafted by the English to help quell the rising rebellion in Ireland, inspire Damien to stay in Ireland and join the resistance.
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Cannes Review – A Scanner Darkly

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After the letdown that was Fast Food Nation and given the risky source material (a Philip K. Dick novel) and filmmaking technique involved (rotoscoping animation), I was excited and very wary when I sat down for an afternoon screening of Richard Linklater‘s 2nd Cannes entry, A Scanner Darkly. While I haven’t yet read A Scanner Darkly, I am a fan of Dick’s wholly original style of writing and Blade Runner aside, I have not been impressed with the adaptations of his work to date. Sure, Total Recall was a bit of popcorn fun, but it was certainly a far cry from a faithful recreation of Dick’s story, We Can Remember It For You Wholesale. I need not have worried. Linklater’s dark and engrossing film stands on its own as a work of exceptional depth and understanding and those familiar with Dick’s dystopic vision of the world will not be disappointed.

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Final Shortbus Cannes Video – Wig In A Box

The whole evening was magical and while my cinematography and sound recording don't quite do it justice (I was using a Canon digitial elph, for Christ's sake!) this was one night to remember. Without further ado, a verse from the now-classic "Wig In A Box.”

Related Blogposts:
Shortbus Party At Cannes – 1st Video Blog
2nd Shortbus Cannes Video – Shoo Bee Doo Bee Doo Wop!
3rd Shortbus Cannes Video – Ça Plane Pour Moi!

3rd Shortbus Cannes Video – Ça Plane Pour Moi!

John Cameron Mitchell, Justin Bond and the Shortbus All-Stars (my name) kick things up a few notches with this rollicking duet. Again, I plead for the existence of a full recording of this night!
p.s. Those of you familiar with David Bowie’s Earthling tour may see an eerie resemblance in the initial still from this video clip!

Related Blogposts:
Shortbus Party At Cannes – 1st Video Blog
2nd Shortbus Cannes Video – Shoo Bee Doo Bee Doo Wop!
Final Shortbus Cannes Video – Wig In A Box

2nd Shortbus Cannes Video – Shoo Bee Doo Bee Doo Wop!

Shoo Bee Doo Bee Doo Wop! Jay Brannan overdid it at the soda shop….
This one is kinda ruined by my choosing to record only the sing-along verse of the song instead of one where you could hear him sing. Actually, it wasn’t really as much of a decision per se as it was just really bad instinct.
Anyway, I did get the funny bit at the beginning, which I guess counts for something. I hope someone out there has full video of this show, as this, along with all the rest of the songs performed would make a great DVD (hint! HINT!).

Related Blog posts:
Shortbus Party At Cannes – 1st Video Blog
3rd Shortbus Cannes Video – Ça Plane Pour Moi!
Final Shortbus Cannes Video – Wig In A Box