Tuesday, April 19, 2016
Tribeca Day 6 Capsules: LAVENDER, AFTER SPRING, TEAM FOXCATCHER, POOR BOY and a mention of VINCENT N ROXXY
As with most days its been social with movies with Lesley Coffin, and Mike Gingold of Fangoria (There is a reason I'm name dropping) not to mention several conversations with Nora Lee Mandel.
The first film of the day was LAVENDER. Its build as a story about a woman trying to regain her memory after car accident. It sounded like a great thriller, but I knew something was up when Mike Gingold showed up. He is only covering genre films and if he was in the house it meant that the film was going to be more horror than thriller.
The film is a supernatural tale about a woman whose family was killed in a terrible massacre years earlier. Now grown up with a daughter of her own she has the car accident and ends up going to her childhood home to try and remember. There are ghosts....and one bit of casting which ends up telegraphing the ending way in advance (you don't put a star in that role unless hes important).
To be honest LAVENDER is a nice little ghost story with just a touch of suspense and no real scares. Its an enjoyable little horror film with a lousy title that is simply part of a lyric of a song. I liked the film but wish it had been promoted correctly since I know several people who would have eaten it up had they known what it was.
AFTER SPRING is a film Jon Stewart is helping to promote. Its a very good look at life in a Syrian refugee camp in Jordan. I liked it a great deal. Though I think I would have loved it had I not been seeing several similar films over the past year or so. If you haven't seen similar films do see it. '
TEAM FOXCATCHER is a Netflix documentary on the Foxcatcher tragedy where billionaire John Du Pont shot wrestler Dave Shultz. Its a story that was previously told in the narrative film FOXCATCHER and a 30 for 30 documentary THE PRINCE OF PENNSYLVANIA. I haven't seen the 30 for 30 film but I have seen FOXCATCHER and seeing this film blew me away. There is simply so much that was left out of the Oscar nominated film that seeing TEAM FOXCATCHER is like seeing the story again for the first time. DuPont is clearly nutsy but there is also a sadness to him It surprises you when a sympathetic word comes from Shultz's now grown daughter. This is a solid film I want to see again.
My last film of the day was going to be VINCENT N ROXXY but twenty minutes in I wasn't clicking with it. I mean I really wasn't clicking with it on any level. So instead of sitting through a film I suspected I wasn't going to review positively I left and went to see POOR BOY.
Okay I need to say two things. Sam Juliano, a good friend, absolutely hated POOR BOY. I think he said it was the worst film he ever saw at Tribeca. On the other hand Lesley Coffin had asked me if I had seen it. I said no, and she said that she was curious what I would make of it. It was a really messed up film that you either loved or hated. There is no middle ground.
My reaction to the film is unique. I can honestly say that I loved the audacity of the film. I loved that it tried to do something more and different. Its a film that is unlike any other film at Tribeca (and after 65 films I can say that with certainty). Its a film that is a complete and utter mess, a car wreck of a film that you can't stop watching and can't walk out of. Its a film that should be called What the Fuck? because that's what you will murmur repeatedly during it.
A good number of people walked out, I wanted to go but I had to see where in the hell it was going to go. No aliens don't land but it wouldn't be out of place if it did.
The nominal plot has two brothers trying to get money to buy the boat they live on (it's located in the middle of the desert) so the come up with the idea that one of them will make pregnant and then marry a Native American girl so they can get the dowry to use for the boat. And into this weird story all sorts of things wander... I can't explain it because your brains will explode.
As a mind cleanse and somethng off the beaten path I enjoyed it but I can not under any circumstances recommend it to anyone. Well maybe to those of you who want films from another dimension, but all others stay away.
And don't assume its a bad film, its neither good nor bad, its something else entirely.
And with that done I headed home to write up the films I've been seeing.... speaking of which time for me to hunker down and write.
Please keep reading because we've got tons more coming.