Saturday, October 2, 2010

NYFF-Day 3.5- Social Network, Nuremberg and a tease at the New Werner Herzog film

Today was a make up day in regard to films from the NYFF. Basically I'm behind where I wanted to be with the number of screenings for a couple of different reasons. However today I went into Manhattan and tried to make up for lost time.

The first film I saw was Social Network. This is the story of the creation of Facebook. I'm not going to go into the film because it's playing everywhere and is being lauded as one of the best of the year and the decade....All I can say is look for a On Further Review entry down the road.

The short version is that the film is about a Mark Zuckerberg, who is best described by his soon to be ex-girlfriend in the first scene as an asshole. He's a socially backward genius of the sort that I grew up around in high school. Actually I know versions of all of the characters, sans the money, and I really didn't like them all that much. Any way Zuckerberg takes the idea of Face Book from a couple of rich guys who need his expertise and turn it into what we know today. Lawsuits result.

For me it was kind of hard to care about anyone in the film when everyone is either a jerk or incredibly shallow. I couldn't fathom why I would want to watch this film other than out of a feeling of obligation.

Don't get me wrong it's not a bad movie, its good, its just that it's hard to feel anything about a bunch of clever guys who are incredibly shallow. In its way the film is as shallow as the people it portrays...all of whom live in a shallow time. The fact that some has called it the film of the decade kind of makes it clear these are shallow times...and wonders what took the reviewer until this movie to notice it?

As I said, it's not bad, its just not as clever as it thinks it is.

People who love mistakes in films will have a field day of sorts as its clear from the poorly added breath mist that the film was not filmed in the dead of winter.

(I should also mention that Jesse Eisenberg nails the tics of an uber geek- however his mannerisms may annoy you, one person at the screening I saw liked the movie but Eisenberg made her nervous and she left.)

I also saw Nuremberg a restoration about the war and the trials that resulted. The film was never shown outside of Europe and the film elements have been lost or destroyed and it was only by careful searching that some of the elements were brought back together.

A good film, but not a great one, the film is very much you are there sort of thing. Its a good film to see if you keep it in the historical context, however if you are expecting something as gripping as a PBS special or a something from the History Channel you'll be disappointed. Its just not that exciting or interesting.

Worth a look but wait for cable.

Lastly I want to mention that I also attended the New Yorker Festival today as well. It was suppose to be a conversation with Werner Herzog. It ended up being a special screening of his new 3-D movie Cave of Forgotten Dreams. It's about the recently discovered cave paintings in Chauvet France. Its amazing and the 3-D actually has a reason to be there since it puts you in the cave. I want to do a full review later, if not this week then next week as part of the week long trbute to Herzog's documentary work.

That's it for now, its late and I have things to do in the morning.

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