Thursday, April 28, 2016
SPECIAL CORRESPONDENTS (2016) Tribeca 2016
The plot has Gervais and Eric Bana as two radio reporters who are supposed to go to Ecuador to cover a possible rebellion but Gervais accidentally throws away their tickets and passports. Hold up in an apartment across from their offices the pair manufacture reports, which causes even more trouble by turns, especially after they claim to be kidnapped.
High art it isn't but it is funny. If you want to know how funny I thought the film was just ask anyone who was at the press and industry screening where my roars of laughter was noted to me for the next two days.
While most of the jokes are a bit low brow, the film has an intelligence to it that I think most people are over looking. There is this interesting thread about why do some people get together and others don't. Gervais and his wife in the film clearly like each other but they don't have anything in common. She married him not for him but because she thought it would be exciting, something that she only finds when she becomes the media focal point for the kidnapping.
I love that the film takes the piss out of the news media. We chuckle at how Gervais and Bana get away with not being in country and filing reports but that's what the news does. Locally when ever a big storm comes the TV news people always go to the same street to report because they know they will get the best shots there. I've been told that there is a spot in Tampa where all the news sets up for great images of crashing waves during a hurricane- the only place in the only place city where it happens. in SPECIAL CORRESPONDENTS Benjamin Brat's TV reporter never leaves his hotel, always filming from a spot 50 feet from its entrance. If we are smart we will be very skeptical of what we see and hear.
While the film does make fun of Gervsis and Bana's friends who help them and who believe they have been kidnapped, despite they themselves playing the kidnappers. the film is making a very serious point in that people really do believe what they see and hear despite the fact that they know better. Reality TV really isn't and despite our knowing that we still believe it.
I love this film on so many levels.
An absolute joy. Highly recommended.
(Coming to Netflix tomorrow)