[PASSNOTES] ‘THE DOUBLE’ IS STRANGELY BEAUTIFUL AND BEAUTIFULLY STRANGE

April 11th, 2014

The Double (2013) Dir. Richard Ayoade – QFT Belfast Who’s in it? Jesse Eisenberg, Mia Wasikowska, Chris O’Dowd What’s it about?The film follows two very different versions of the same character, Simon James and James Simon. Loner Simon is Haunted by a self-assured doppelganger who gradually takes over his life. Both roles are played with […]

[PASSNOTES] ‘ROSEMARY’S BABY’ IS ARGUABLY HOLLYWOOD’S MOST HAUNTING MOVIE TO DATE

November 1st, 2013

Rosemary’s Baby (1968) Dir. Roman Polanski – Monday Nov 4th QFT Belfast Who’s in it? Mia Farrow, John Cassavetes, Ruth Gordon What’s it about? Polanski’s seemingly critic-proof masterpiece nullifies any need for standard generic scare-mongering in favour of the authentic horror of an everyday evil… blood-curdling in its banality. Written and directed by Roman Polanski […]

DOES POLANSKI’S CARNAGE OFFER ANY NEW INSIGHTS INTO MIDDLE CLASS ANXIETIES, OR JUST A SATIRICAL SEND UP OF TRADITIONAL FAMILY VALUES?

February 16th, 2012

‘A victory for no nonsense performances in a situation comedy for people who don’t like situation comedies’.

Roman Polanski’s adaptation of Yasmina Reza’s Toni award-winning play ‘The god of carnage’ tells the story of two middle class couples meeting in an apartment in an affluent New York suburb after their sons get into a fight. Things begin pleasantly enough: coffee, cake, pretentious art, more cake. But when carefully maintained personas are allowed to slip, civilised sensibilities give way to brute instinct. Let the mind games begin!

A scuffle in the park and a stick in the face means broken teeth and a comedy of domestic terrors that makes the Cuban missile crisis look like a civilised sit down over a nice cup of tea. The afternoon begins with well intentioned politeness and ends with alcohol fuelled verbal pyrotechnics as both couples criticise each other’s parenting prowess while refusing to admit any fault or accept any blame themselves. What happens in between is the result of a volatile combination of unrealistic expectations, false smiles and uncomfortable home-truths.

As the characters rub up against each other’s prejudices, sparks fly as they recognise in one another the disappointments and failings in their own lives. Beneath the sniping and thinly veiled insults are revealed the hopes and fears of a generation of baby boomers struggling to grow up. Polanski directs a powerhouse cast and produces a victory for no nonsense performances in a situation comedy for people who don’t like situation comedies.

Carnage (2011)

Jodie Foster is Penelope Longstreet. Conscientious and terminally high strung, an art lover who feels responsible for the situation in Darfur while oblivious to the civil war brewing under her own roof. ‘It’s a comedy of people’s manners’, says Foster, ‘and how they lose those manners.’ Kate Winslet plays Nancy Cowan, a working mother whose sophisticated veneer of cold professionalism is eventually abandoned as she struggles with her perpetually pre-occupied husband, played with impish irreverence by Christophe Waltz, concerned more about a relationship with his Blackberry than with his family.

‘You can take the man out of the cave but you can’t take the cave out of the man’

John C. Reilly plays Penelope’s husband Michael who seems desperate to keep the peace and to whistle to his tightly wound wife’s tune. The couple’s united fronts are clearly forced and help to create an amusingly uncomfortable atmosphere which is strongly felt and becomes more pronounced as the situation develops. Polanski cranks up the tension with tight close ups and unflattering camera angles, unwilling to let even a single back-handed syllable drop to the floor unnoticed. Each awkwardly restrained action has its own equal and opposite reaction, at first repressed but eventually indulged with appropriately satisfying theatricality.

CARNAGE REVIEW: ‘A COMEDY OF PEOPLE’S MANNERS’… AND HOW THEY LOSE THEM.

February 10th, 2012

Cast: Jodie Foster, Kate Winslet, Christoph Waltz, John C. Reilly. Tagline: ‘A new comedy of no manners’. ‘Makes the Cuban Missile Crisis look like a civilised sit down over a nice cup of tea’.



All content of Filmplicity copyright of filmplicity.com © 2013 :: RSS