Friday, April 27, 2018

Tribeca 2018: Day 9: Too many damn films- BLEEDING EDGE, AMATEURS, ENHANCED, EGG and SWEETBITTER

A five film day that followed a five film day (in addition to the 4 Tribeca films yesterday I also saw AVENGER INFINITY WAR- It's good) has left me exhausted. Thankfully, and sadly, there are only two more days left.

Since I need to write up about 15 films from this week I'm just going to jump and write up today's films:

THE BLEEDING EDGE is a Netflix documentary about how medical devices are not really tested thanks to FDA exceptions that allow anything based on old devices to skip new testing. The trouble is that if an old device was found to be dangerous and recalled the new device is still allowed to be put on the market. The result is millions of people are being hurt. The film shows what happened with Essure birth control devices, cobalt based joint replacements and mesh devices for bladder leaks. Its a vital and important documentary that is oddly missing passion and urgency. I think that's the result of the lack of seriousness with everyone interviewed. There is no doubt they have all suffered but they all seem so chipper. Reservations this is a must when it plays on Netflix.

AMATEURS is about when a town is in the running for a big box store from Germany. The town council feels that a promotional film is needed and they first turn to their citizens and then a professional to get it done. It's an amusing film that gets better as it goes on but is so rambling that I really don't have much to say about it.

ENHANCED was an episode of an upcoming ESPN documentary series about the ways we are striving to enhance human performance and to win at sports. The episode screened focused on the use of Sabermetrics and various ways of physical monitoring of athletes in order to get the best performance. A very basic primer on the subjects covered, each topic is deserving of a feature of it's own. Watching the episode I kept wanting to stop the film and ask for more information, which is not something I ever really do with a film connected to Alex Gibney. I have no idea how this reflects on the rest of the series but this left me wanting to see more episodes but not needing to.

EGG will get a full review because there is a great deal to say. The story of what happens when two couples get together for dinner. One of the women is pregnant and it is something that acts as a catalyst for examinations of children, women's roles, relationships and what do we all really want. The film unexpectedly moved me because it raised some issues that had recently returned to haunt me. For more you'll have to wait for the full review

SWEETBITTER is a new Starz TV series about a young woman who moves to New York and gets a job in a upscale restaurant. I am not going to review the show because from just seeing a couple of episodes you can't truly know what a show is. This looks good, but what we saw felt like things were still being set in lace to get going in the later episodes.

And that's it for today- I'm off to fill in the gaps from the last five days.  We have so much left to tell you that pieces will be dropping through next Friday.

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