Filmfest is almost over with 6 films spread across 3 days remaining. Probably just as well as I think my reviews are getting shorter and less coherent :-) It’s been a good week so far, and much improved over the first few days. Though it is rather evident that many folk are coming down with colds. The first movie last night had many still, quiet, meditative scenes which were all but ruined by coughing reverberating through the cinema.
That film was Noruwei No Mori (Norwegian Wood) from Japan, directed by Tran Ahn Hung. It was a beautiful, melancholic flick exploring themes of loss and struggling with grief and sorrow, yet at the same trying to look beyond, toward a hope. Growing up as a group of 3 (1 couple + friend), they were split apart when one half of the couple suicides. Most of the film is set a year or two later with the other two reconnecting, still struggling to make sense of their loss. It’s as much the capacity to love as the capacity to grieve. I found it a thoughtful, meditative piece though twinged with sadness.
The second movie was an action thriller from Brazil directed by José Padilha: Tropa de Elite 2: O Inimigo Agora é Outro (Elite Squad: The Enemy Within). This was a sequel to a film that was at filmfest a few years ago. Mostly action oriented though attempting to make a comment on the cycles and connections of crime and politics. I vaguely recall the original and I think I preferred it to this sequel, however it was a solid piece of work. It played a little with perspectives and had some heart to it. Definitely an enjoyable, albeit bloody, ride.