One of the those “perfect little films” that you hear about, Roger Mitchell’s Venus will, hopefully, find a larger audience on DVD than it did in the theaters. Honestly, there is little, if anything, wrong with this little gem, written by veteran Hanif Kureshi (Sammy and Rosie Get Laid, My Beautiful Laundrette) which received an 82 on Metacrtic.com, including three perfect scores of 100. Not far from a pervy Pygmalion, Venus stars the never better Peter O’Toole as Maurice, a sort of horny Henry Higgins alongside the delightful newcomer Jodie Whittaker as Jessie, a Northern chav cum Eliza Doolittle. Jesse has just come to London to stay with her great uncle Ian (a wonderfully cranky Leslie Phillips) and proceeds to turn everyone’s lives arse over tits, as they say.
In response to fellow blogger Tom Hall‘s call to arms, as well as the 2006 indieWIRE Critics’ poll I am posting my year end list. I have violated the rules laid down by Mr. Hall and indieWIRE because I felt like it and because I have trouble following directions. I have doubled the performance categories and thrown some runners up, as well as a few “worst of the year” mentions. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: my blog, my rules!
Also, there are many films I have yet to see, including The Death of Mr. Lazarescu, L’Enfant, Army of Shadows (returning soon to Film Forum!), Old Joy, Casino Royale, Borat, Half Nelson, The Last King of Scotland, Volver…. now it’s just getting embarrassing. As a result, I get the feeling I will be monkeying with my list as the year winds down this week. The “best first feature” section is especially barren for me, not having seen any of the indieWIRE-listed films. That said, I am pretty ok with my choice. As for the “best documentary” category, I am woefully unprepared for this one. (Jesus, I am getting more and more pathetic as this goes on….). I am therefore leaving it blank and hope to fill it in at a later date.
On with the poll!