Something hidden -- go and find it;
Go and look beyond the Ranges
Something lost behind the ranges:
Lost and waiting for you. Go!

-- from Guy Maddin's CAREFUL

Being a periodic meditation on some of the more obscure outlying regions of cinema;
regarding movies that are inadequately publicized and hence, easily overlooked --
and by cinema, it is meant in the larger sense of films/tv/DVD/internet --
that might be worthy of your interest, but perhaps has escaped your notice.


Friday, September 14, 2007

Fall '07 Trailer Round-Up

       Regular readers of this blog will have undoubtedly noticed that each successive entry has had a consistent format -- one film per post: a brief intro., a synopsis, some background info. etc. -- but once a month or so I’d like to interrupt the regular routine with something a little different. To kick it off, here’s a round-up of movie trailers for films making their theatrical debut sometime this upcoming Fall. Apple’s trailer page does a very good job of keeping track of upcoming releases on the whole (if you haven’t seen the trailer for Great World of Sound yet, do yourself a favor and check it out; it looks hilarious!); but there always seem to be a few films that slip through the cracks... -- so here, let me scoop 'em up for 'ya.

       Darkon is an independently produced documentary about... uhh, nerds -- serious, full-time nerds with highly developed sewing and smithing skills and lots of free time on their hands. It’s also about L.A.R.P. s or Live Action Role Playing gamers -- in other words, people who’ve watched Lord of the Rings one too many many times and decided to don their tunics and grab their “vorpal” swords and do it up for "real". Not a demographic that I've ever really felt a need to know more about, but then again neither were the subjects of King of Kong -- and that was great! Darkon has gotten good reviews at a slew of film fests, and won the Audience Award at the SXSW Festival this year. I’ve seen a couple of early promo reels for this, and while they’ve in no way increased my desire to wear leggings or purchase a ten-sided die, I do think it looks like it’s worth watching. Darkon is already open in a couple of venues in NYC, and should make it to the rest of the nation this Fall. Huzzah!

       Wristcutters is a black comedy starring -- amongst others -- talented singer/songwriter and actor Tom Waits, and talented model/hottie and actress Shannyn Sossamon. It’s a comic tale about finding true love -- except that the people looking for it are all already dead; who knows, maybe it’s easier under those circumstances -- at the very least, lets hope it proves entertaining. Wristcutters: A Love Story has gotten good write-ups from its screenings at Sundance and won it’s fair share of awards at some other Film Festivals. It opens October 19th in NYC and LA, and will move on to other markets from there.

       It Is Fine! EVERYTHING IS FINE is the second feature film from actor/auteur/very-strange-person Crispin Glover, and is a sort-of sequel to his first feature, What Is It? -- surely the most bizarre movie I saw last year -- maybe this past decade; to know for certain, I’d have to see it again, and I’m not sure I’m on the right combination of meds to handle that just yet. This marks Glover’s second collaboration with screenwriter and “star”, Steven C. Stewart, a wheelchair-bound quadraplegic who died shortly after completing his role in the film. It Is Fine! EVERYTHING IS FINE has been sighted at Sundance this year, where viewers were, on the whole, unable to discern what impressed them more about the film: the extent of their indignation at what they were watching, or their total confusion over what to make of it. Glover is self-distributing the film, which rolls out this Fall as a sort of road-show with a live performance from him as well -- it’s quite the event -- go see it when it comes to your town... I dare ‘ya.

       The Orphanage is a horror film produced by Pan’s Labyrinth director Guillermo Del Toro, and concerns eerie goings-on at a woman's ancestral home. Del Toro is no slouch himself at directing in the horror genre, having made two excellent examples thereof, Cronos and The Devil’s Backbone (as well as the pretty-good Mimic); advance word on the film has been very strong, and suggests that it’s far from just another standard-issue supernatural thriller -- but then again nothing Del Toro’s done so far has been “standard” -- so why should this be any different? The Orphanage opens in late Fall of this year.

       Invisible Waves is a crime thriller from Thailand, directed by Pen-Ek Ratanaruang -- who made the excellent Last Life In The Universe a few years back. The story concerns a cook (Tadanobu Asano) who has an affair with his bosses wife -- who then orders him to kill her. This film was Thailand’s initial entry in the 79th Academy Awards, but was later withdrawn because Tadanobu is not of Thai descent himself, but Japanese. Invisible Waves opens in October in NYC and LA -- not sure how many other markets this one will make it to.

       Taxidermia is the only film covered in this post that I’ve actually seen as of this writing, and it’s a compelling -- if sometimes stomach churning -- cinematic experience. An anthology film about three generations of Hungarians -- a soldier, an "athlete" and a taxidermist -- spanning from WWII to the near future. The film has a comic, if bleak, tone throughout and is that rare example of an anthology film that works (at least, it worked for me). Taxidermia is supposed to have a late Fall release, with a DVD release to follow in early 2008.

Next post -- 09/21/07


Rich said...

Hey! I can't believe you didn't include "Balls of Fury." (Hmmmm, guess it already opened...)

grigorss said...

You'll read a write-up for "Balls of Fury" on this blog as soon as you start to feel the ground beneath your feet get very, very cold...

...think about it.