Friday, May 05, 2017

Silly fun and scary murder

Thursday I saw two more movies.

There are lots of doom-and-gloom docs this year, as usual. Political and environmental nightmares the world over. So far, I have avoided these pretty well.

I avoid them by filling my dance-card with things like Hobbyhorse Revolution!

I got to the cinema early, partly because I am always early and partly because I had the time wrong in my mind and thought the movie started 15 minutes before it actually did. So, I got the best seat in the middle of the house... After a few minutes, a staff member came and asked if I could move over one, because they needed a bunch of seats together for the filmmakers. No prob. In walked a group of women, some of them teenagers, some of them carrying hobbyhorses, and they sat right down next to me! This is as close as Hot Docs gets to movie stars, and one of the reasons I love it!

The movie shows us these girls, around the age of 12 or 14, training and entering competitions and making hobbyhorses and tending them... it is sort of weird, really. They are pretending, and I certainly hope they know they are pretending, but they do it so well that one wonders. Is riding this hobbyhorse really different from riding that one? Can a hobbyhorse be well-behaved, or not? (A hobbyhorse is, of course, a sewn and stuffed horse's head on a broomstick.)

They organize competitions where they do dressage and jumping, and the judges are young enthusiasts, too. There is hardly a parent to be seen. It might be crazy, but in some ways it seems a healthier environment than, say, figure skating. Unlikely to be an Olympic sport any time soon.

Certainly not doom and gloom -- no animals were harmed in the making of this film!

It was another pouring-rain day. I got home from that movie in time to have a civilized dinner with the family, and then braved the elements again for a late show.


That is from the HotDocs twitter account, and I am with the blue and white umbrella under the lamp on the far right. We waited in that line for rather longer than I had anticipated!

The wait was worth it, though, because the movie was very good! 78/52, about the shower scene from Psycho. Yes, a whole movie about one short scene from a decades-old movie. Lots of clips of even older movies, later movies, other Hitchcock movies, and of course, the scene itself, bit by bit and over and over. Lots of interviews, too, with the woman whose body you actually see in the shower while Janet Leigh screams, and with editors and other moviemakers. Very clever, and very interesting.

It is still raining, and I have two more movies to see today! My wettest and busiest Hot Docs yet, I'd say.