Sunday, June 27, 2010

Capsule Reviews NYAFF 2010 part two

A few more films I've seen on DVD and are more than worth your time. These look to be some of the best films of the Film Festival (and the year). All will get longer reviews down the line. I'm mentioning them now because if you are New York you will have a chance to see all three on the big screen during the festival. If you can't get to the festival all three can be had on DVD from Yes Asia.

At the outset I want to say that this is posibly one of my favorite films of 2010. Its a blast.
Radio talk show host finds out that the young single mom whose story he's been using for his show, is in fact his daughter. Yea this is the sort of thing that Hollywood has been doing for decades, often badly. Here its done to near perfection thanks to a cast that sells it, great comedy and even better music. This is the first film I discovered through this years film festival that is truly great. I will be doing a full review of this down the line, but for now all you need know is that should you have an opening on this Monday the 28th (tomorrow) or on July 7th go see this film, it will make you feel great. (As the film festival said in one of the blurbs on the film- why are we showing a two year old film? Because its damn funny)

Jackie Chan turns in an Oscar worthy performance in his best film in decades. The plot has Chan as a foot soldier who happens upon a wounded enemy general whom he takes possession of, hoping to turn him in for ransom. Along the road they are chased by warlords and the general's own men. While the fights here are absolutely stunning its the characters you'll remember with Chan proving once and for all he's an underrated actor and one of the best character actors out there. Flawed only by a bit of meandering at the start and an occasional odd mixing of humor and seriousness, this is a film that ultimately will move you deeply and give you pause. This is playing July 1 and 3 at the Festival and is worth making the effort to see it. (I would go see it on the big screen but I can't fit the film in)

CASTAWAY ON THE MOON (aka Kim's Island)
Young man deep in debt, with no job and no girl decides to jump into the Han River. He ends up washed up on an island unable to get off. He begins to reinvent his life as a castaway. Meanwhile a house bound woman who hasn't left her room in three years notices him and thinks he's an alien. What transpires is a truly unique film that's about two lost souls finding hope, life and maybe each other. There is no way I can do justice to this film, all I can say is see it if you get the chance. It's a charming little film that is ultimately its own confection. My one piece of advice is don't make up your mind until you get to the end of the film, I wasn't sure I was liking it until an hour in, and even then I thought I had a couple of moments where I questioned it. But in the end I laughed I smiled and I got a tear in my eye. This is playing the Festival on July 4th and 7th and worth trying. (And I may make an effort to go because the director is in attendence)

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