Saturday, August 3, 2013

MIFF: Frances Ha

Last year during the Toronto International Film Festival I decided to skip Fances Ha because it looked like a movie that would make me mad. These madness inducing movies usually include a 20-something hipster/pixie dream girl who is down on her luck but miraculously gets her shit together in 2 hours of screen time. If you watch the trailer this is what Frances Ha looks like and to make it worse it's in black and white (pretentious much??)

I hear you asking 'why did go and see it?'

The reason for my change of heart is partly so I won't be left out of all the Frances Ha talk that is bound to start any day now and partly because I was wrong and this is one hell of a movie!

Director Noah Baumbach is known for making films where his characters stumble through life in painful and humourous ways. Frances Ha is no exception. Frances (Greta Gerwig) is approaching 30, struggling to make it as a dancer and more often than not struggling with life.

The film is funny, beautiful, painful and touching. Although the plot could be seen as simple, the film is really exploring the time in ones life when we just want to know where we belong.

With each new disaster Frances has the courage to pick herself up and start again, each time getting a little closer to finding her place in this crazy world.

I really didn't think I would like this movie but alas, I loved it!

Thursday, August 1, 2013

MIFF: Prince Avalanche

When I saw there was a new movie starring Paul Rudd and Emile Hirsch screening at MIFF I was very intrigued. When I noticed it was a buddy movie set in the 80's it was a done deal.

Prince Avalanche tells the tale of two men spending the summer of 1988 isolated, repainting yellow road lines after a savage brushfire destroyed the area. The men are ying and yang, Alvin (Rudd) is serious and driven whilst his girlfriends brother, Lance (Hirsch) is dopey and aimless.

The film is driven by the interaction between the two characters, with dialog that is both vulgar and poignant in equal measure. The characters slowly reveal themselves to the audience and to each other  as it becomes clear neither character has their life in order.