Friday I did two documentaries: Women He's Undressed and the Return of the Atom.
Women's He's Undressed is the story of the Australian designer Orry-Kelly, who came to New York and ultimately Hollywood in the 30s and 40s, and beyond, and who won three Academy Awards for his costume design. The movie also talked about changing attitudes towards homosexuality in Hollywood; Orry-Kelly lived with Archie Leach/Cary Grant in New York and was hurt when Grant did the "get married, pretend to not be gay" schtick.
Of course, lovely fashions throughout!
|Tony Curtis and Jack Lemmon in Orry-Kelly dresses|
The Return of the Atom was about building a nuclear power plant in Finland, the first to be built in the West since the Chernobyl disaster. I thought there would be more about the aftermath of that event, but really, it was mostly about the building. If you watch the trailer at the link above, you will see lots of time-lapse pictures of cranes and concrete and men working... The movie could have been at least 10 minutes shorter if they'd been more restrained with the time-lapse. This was my least favourite of the festival; I just found it kind of boring!
The next day I got up at the crack of dawn to see a movie I couldn't even remember anything about. I'd had to swap a ticket that someone had given me, and just looked in my screening schedule for something that fit. I'd starred this one sometime before, so figured I must have thought it looked good at some point!
It was a Northern Irish film called A Patch of Fog. Wow. It concerns a man who is an author, professor, TV personality and shoplifter. He gets caught in the first few minutes of the movie by a security guard with psychological problems of his own. Very engrossing! He's gonna kill him. No, wait, he's gonna kill him. Oh, suicide! The ending is perfect, and not quite what I'd expected.
Saturday afternoon's movie was Families, a French movie with Mathieu Amalric. It was light and funny and pretty good, in a French-family-farce sort of way. Silly plot involving several generations, Shanghai, French small towns, old wills and so on. Spoiler alert: they all live happily ever after.
Finally, Sunday morning, I saw Heart of a Dog by Laurie Anderson. Again, not what I'd expected, but then, when did Laurie Anderson ever do what one expects? It is a movie about death and life and art and 9/11 in New York. I love her voice, and she narrates the whole thing, so while one is being touched by the stories, one is also being seduced by her voice. A perfect finish to my festival!
And really, next year, I am not going to see 12 movies in eight days!