Tuesday, August 03, 2010

Award Ceremony NZ International Film Festival 2010

This is really just a personal summary of this year's Film Festival, in a style I have used before.

This was a year of political films. A year when directors couldn't help themselves from playing with time lines, and they often couldn't be bothered with the traditional cinematic conventions to signal flashbacks. It was also a year of superfluous final scenes.

In summary, this year's...
Best Film: Cell 211
French Farce: The Concert
Classic Film: Once Upon a Time in the West
Special Mention: A Prophet - educating us on how prison educates

Best Comedy

All good, but The Concert just beats Four Lions, but I wouldn't like to pick a third place getter from the other three.

Best Thriller

My pick is Cell 211 - tense from beginning to end.

Best Mystery Film

The best told, yet simplest mystery was The Double Hour.
Triangle was the most mind bending,
while The Ghost Writer was the 3rd most entertaining mystery.

Best Political Film
There were plenty of films with a political theme or drama based on political conflict this year.


Four Lions was the most irreverant, Russian Lessons was the most thought provoking, Kawasaki's Rose and Agora also made me think, while White Material, Ajami and Scherezade did a good job of presenting consequences of political conflicts.

Best Horror
  • The Loved Ones - does for outback folk what Hitchcock did for shower curtains.
  • Dream Home - an apartment to die for.
  • The Human Centipede - mad doctor has it all sewn up.
  • Wound - the angry by-product of being bored by the utterly predictable banality of our mainstream movies.
  • Triangle - didn't I kill you five minutes ago?
  • Splice - Picaso meets genetic engineering.

My pick is Triangle. Usually people take a cruise to escape, but these people want to escape from the cruise. Stylish Splice was my next pick, with The Loved Ones as the best of the splatter movies.

New Zealand Films
In order from best to worst:
  1. Predicament - what did you do in the school holidays?
  2. The Hopes & Dreams of Gazza Snell - come crashing down.
  3. Wound - love it or hate it.

The acting in the Kiwi films was often better than the films. In particlar Kate O’Rourke and William McInnes were outstanding and Jemaine Clement was delightfully spooky.


Time Travel
This was a year where directors used non-traditional techniques jumping around in time.

Superfluous Final Scenes

In addition Splice ran out of inspiration near end. The Time that Remains had superfluous scenes in 2nd half even though the final scene was great. While the final scene of The Killer Inside Me was full of problems.

Best Actors
In order
  1. Kate O’Rourke acts her heart out in Wound
  2. Luis Tosar was mesmerising as Malamadre in Cell 211
  3. Everyone knows a Gazza like William McInnes
  4. Casey Affleck was The Killer Inside Me

Previously I have noted the unrealistic or unjustified use of a sexy actress. I didn't notice any blatant eye candy this year. Even Kim Cattrall and Rachel Weisz were looking restrained and aren't all female violin soloists beautiful?

But I have it on good authority that there were two pretty boys in The Hopes & Dreams of Gazza Snell.

One offs
Western: Once Upon a Time in the West - the best of the West?
Animation: In the Attic - junk having fun
Documentary: Russian Lessons - eye openning
Science Fiction: Splice - shock and humour
Surreal: Wound - amazing acting, pity about the film
Silent: Marvellous Corricks - weird and wonderful pre-1910 silent films

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