Introducing: Short Film of the Week series

January 22, 2010

This marks the beginning of a new series here at Something Offensive.  Pretty self-explanatory if not exceptionally original (that’s fast becoming my M.O., I know).

I think this will provide a nice outlet for myself and others to expose ourselves to and discuss more experimental works and help us better appreciate the cinematic form.

I plan to watch a fair amount of shorts every week, by filmmakers known and unknown, with content and ideas ranging all over the map.  And come each weekend, I’ll post my favorite find.

If there are any short films you would like to see featured in the weeks ahead, let us know in the comments below, and I’ll be sure to check them out.

This week’s selection: “There’s Only One Sun”  (2007)

director: Wong Kar-wai

I wanted to kick things off by getting an obvious choice of filmmaker out of the way.  I’ve often touted WKW’s more well-known feature work, and in case you haven’t seen Fallen Angels or In the Mood for Love, this might serve as a good primer.

Philips commissioned the director to showcase their new HD TV’s capabilities, and couldn’t have possibly made a better selection.  Here we’re treated to Wong’s brand of narration, his striking use of light and color,  tragic romantic characters, very particular soundtrack, bold titles, notes of interpersonal isolation, etc.   I find both the French language and the futuristic neo-noir set-up are natural fits for the director; the central concept really allows him to demonstrate his craft.  My only major critique is that I  wish the narrative had maintained a greater sense of mystery.  The first minute or two had me fully intrigued, so I couldn’t help but feel somewhat letdown once it sort of revealed its hand.

All in all, between this and Wong’s somewhat aesthetically-similar 2046, I’d be greatly interested to see him tackle a feature-length of this or something close in line provided he had a more refined story.  It’s just a painfully beautiful vision to behold.

What are your thoughts?

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Top 50 Movies of the Decade – part 3

December 23, 2009

Part 1 (#46-50)

Part 2 (#41-45)

And…

As promised, here’s our next 5 selections.  Visit tomorrow to see picks 31-35.

(trailer)

Taos: Oh man, I love everything Mamet does. Not even Tim Allen could bring this movie down.

David: A quiet David Mamet. There’s a lot in Redbelt that could be criticized. But the protagonist’s arc–by movie’s end–just the stuff of greatness. Solidified Chiwetel Ejiofor as one of my favorite actors.

(trailer)

David: [note: the flip of a coin, and 2046 may as well be here instead] The ever-wistful In the Mood for Love is the first of a more refined Wong Kar Wai. I prefer his early-mid summer period (maybe that’s because I myself am still young), but I still adore his late summer now autumn flags. A great piece of cinema in its own right, once seen in the context of its loose trilogy (Days of Being Wild, Mood, 2046), another dimension of allure–something mysterious–amplifies in the mind.  Aaaaand… another Chris Doyle photographed pic makes the list.

Taos: Cinematography looks amazing, but I haven’t seen it yet.

(trailer)

Taos: Finally a sci-fi film that doesn’t forget the science. Duncan Jones might be the next big thing. Especially if he gets to make the movies he wants. Not much can be said without ruining it. In the case of this movie: more is less. (Duncan Jones is David Bowie’s freakin son!)

David: Supposed to be better than it looks. I’ll find out come its dvd release next month.  A score by Clint Mansell can’t hurt its chances.

(trailer)

David: One of the most visceral movie experiences I’ve had.  Apart from the spotty prehistoric stampede, I was there for the ride the full three hours topside.  A supreme beauty of an epic.

Taos: Hard to like at first, but grows with reflection. If I were to pick a movie I hated at first but grew to love, I probably would have went with War of the Worlds instead.

(trailer)

David: Letting Matt Damon kick ass for six hours was one of the best decisions of the decade. Simply enough, what really pushes this one past its bookends (and by a sturdy margin) is its emotional primacy, succeeding, too, at what Quantum of Solace later failed to make happen for 007.

Taos: The Bourne films run together in my mind. I know the action was great and the story was outstanding, but I cannot tell you the individual storylines. Influenced half a decade of action films: nuff said.

Until tomorrow!