Daily Archives: October 3, 2011

Black Pond by Tom Kingsley & Will Sharpe

Two young filmmakers managed to convince well known actors to take part in their indie micro budget production.

The plot is interestingly led through flashbacks and the whole film leads to the final resolution which is shown through various scenes and talking heads.

A good script but had an impression that too little has been cut. There are funny moments and very good dialogues but in all the film drags a little. Bravo for the courage and completion!

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Angel Express by Rolf Peter Kahl

A German accent on this year’s Raindance.

This is a re-cut version of a film that was originally shot and made in 1998.

Although the director was present in the audience during the Q&A’s after the screening, it is not clear to me why he decided to re-cut the same old film 12 years after. Because it is not a Blade Runner cult like film. And unlike the famous example, this film has aged.

As many times in the cinema, this is a story of a few characters somehow connected through work/place/relationships in 1990’s Berlin. There are a few interesting faces and the plot does hold together. Yet some of its elements seem as if cut midway through the characters personal visions and stories.

One of the things worth noting is fantastic cinematography.

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Gabi on the Roof in July by Lawrence Michael Levine

An urban tale of a 20-year old artist on a summer break in NYC before going back to college.Fantastic music, great colours and costumes. Plus an innovative way of story telling.

A warm cordial vision of flatsharing in NYC, of brotherly and sisterly love, of jealousy and the differences between being 20 or 20-something and being 30 or 30-something. Great music, a lot of humour and bitter-sweet situations that mix tears with laughter.

A lot of irony, sarcasm, surprising twists and turns, a lot of dialogue, a lot of talking. A great watch!

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Victim by Alex Pillai

Set somewhere in East End where people live in tall soulless block of flats.

A difficult tale of the vicious circle of violence and crime of which once you’re a part of, you will always come back. London is depicted as the city of extreme contrasts between wealth and poverty and how seemingly easy it is to balance on the edge of both extremes. Somehow a rich daddy’s daughter ends up flatsharing with girls who are partners in crime to three blokes burgling into rich guys’ flats & houses wooed by the girls. Somehow the brain master of the crime owns a high standard large flat and drives a ridiculously expensive car and yet his little sister attends a state school, while he copes with old time debts he struggles to pay.

There is no happy ending but there is a final message which brings us back to the title. A victim can also be the perpetrator because he is the victim of the environment. That seems painfully true even without the experience of this film.

Interesting and intertwined script.

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Mesocafé by Ja’far ‘Abd Al-Hamid

Shot entirely in London this film tells the story of the Iraqi community in UK during the crucial months of February 2002 and 2003 before the war in Iraq burst out.

All the characters speak in English with heavy Arabic accents which was an intentional tool as the director wanted to convey the melody of Arabic into English. It’s a love story with political background and presents the world an average Londoner may not be aware of. A diaspora with its own bookshops, cafe’s who is connected by the country of origin. And it does not matter if they emmigrated back in 1970’s, in 1980’s or very recently.

A warm story with strong historical connections.

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