sff 2016 day 11

Day 11 and final day, rounding out with 3 movies, dinner and still home by 9. The day started with a pair of gangsta flicks: Psycho Raman from India and Suburra from Italy. The first was about a cop and a vicious serial killer circling each other and the hunter and hunted swaps back and forth. The killer is violent and will casually kill with a tyre iron while the cop also has no problem killing and is drug addicted with violent tendencies himself. There wasn’t a lot to like in this film and its cycle of violence and little difference in behaviour the “good” guy and the “bad” guy.

Suburra was much, much better though you could argue that it’s the same sort of violence dressed up in a slicker package. Lushly shot in Rome with intrigue spread across multiple levels of society including the mafia, politicians, drug addicts and the vatican. The audience was aware of the bigger picture and weavings beyond that of the characters involved. The overarching theme was a long term project coming to an accelerated conclusion, with other local parts triggering larger events, all playing off each other. This was violent and intelligent, playing in the corridors of power and corruption.

Final film of the day, and filmfest for me, was the new one from Pedro Almodóvar, Julieta. As is often the case with Almodóvar’s films, women dominate throughout with various perspectives coming into play. Swapping back and forth in time, the movie traces the life of a woman and her daughter who ceased contact at 18. Almodóvar’s handling of the story is deft without being overindulgent. Also present is an intertwining of multiple stories but not overly so with the story kept tight. Both the younger and older versions of the women are well played with a sense of depth and engagement. At the same time, the movie feels fresh and takes you along for the ride.

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