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Donderdag 24-1
20.15u S
torytelling, Todd Solonz, 5,
Great movie in the tradition of Happiness. The story of fiction and non-fiction is intelligent, the acting very good and convincing and the humour black and funny. What to think of housekeeper Consuela explaining what is rape to 8 year old spoiled son. That is if you love someone and that other person does not love you, you'll do something about it. Or enormous father sitting next to the bed of his son who is in coma and the other little boy states that he may be the one in a million that recovers from it. There is optimism and there is ignorance and the line between them is very delicate. Funny substory about the hopeless documentary maker. When you want fiction it becomes non-fiction and when there is non-fiction (a rape of black school teacher in the first part), it becomes fiction as soon as you make a story of it. Excellent..

Mijn bruder der Vampire, Sven Taddicken, 3,
Since Lola rennt, I try a German movie every year. This one was a bit over the top, but still entertaining enough to look at. But what do German directors have with small vans decorated with love signs etc. It is always as if the 19eighties never started in Germany. Quite good acting by mentally retarded Gush who wants to get laid with his brothers girlfriend. I also liked his small sister trying to do the same thing. However, sometimes there are too many events at once (which is often the case in first films).

Vrijdag 25-1
Chicken Rice War, CheeK, 4,
Funny comedy about two rival families with chicken rice shops next to each other embedded in a Shakespearian love story (Romeo and Juliette) in old and new Singapore. Sometimes a bit critical about society (health inspectors and the planning system; asking friend: you have bubblegum, before having to kiss Juliette in the play. Friend answers: no this is Singapore, but I have mints), but mostly funny and with some rather good acting in the serious parts. The chicken dishes look very appetizing. So the conclusion of the movie in the final sub titles is: why all these Shakespearian elements, just eat you rice.

Demasiado Amor, Ernesto Rimoch, 2,
Movie about first rather lonely Mexican lady, who then start meeting too many Mexican men, when she becomes more popular. In this way, by taking grants from the men, she gets money for her sister in Spain who has started a small hotel or at least says so. The sister cheats a little bit, but later their quarrels end when also the sister meets a decent man and gets children. The whole story is not very convincing and the scenes are too losely connected to make it very interesting.

Flower Island, Song Il Gong, 3,
Three girls from Seoul meet each other after facing different problems, such as an abortion, a dead customer on top of you when prostituting and cancer. The funny part is when two of them want to go to the Southern Sea but end up high in the snowy mountains beacause the bus driver decided to change the destination. The road movie part of the story is interesting, but once they reach the sea and the second half of the movie, the developments are becoming less and less interesting. The final scene in which the woman with cancer does not find the cure on flower island and disappears by means of a boat in the sky is too long and does not fit in the rest of the movie.

Tears of the Black Tiger, Wisit Sasanatieng, 1,
One of the most fascinating and at the same time worst movies I have seen in my life. The story and the acting is terrible, everything is artificially pink coloured and the movie is probably not even a parody. Still it is so funny to look at a Thai western with bullets in slow motion and where everything is so exaggerated that I could not help having enjoyed this dragon.

Zaterdag 26-1
A Huey P newton story, 3, Spike Lee,
After the black tiger we continued with the black panther. And my brothers and sisters from the moviescene, I can assure you that it ain't easy to look at Huey for 90 minutes. Once a freedom fighter in jail, struggling for black power, het is now a chainsmoking, middle aged, pale nigger with the disease of Gille de la Torret (if I am right - the cannot sit still variant) trying to be a comedian. Still Spike Lee manages to somehow make it an interesting performance and I do not regret having seen this documentary cabaret.

Bolivia, Adrian Caetano, 4,
Small pitoresque black and white movie about Bolivian working in an Argentine restaurant. Interesting to see how Argentines look with contempt at the people from Peru, Paraguay, Uruguay and Bolivia who see Buenos Aires (at least at that time) as a rich city where to earn money..

The Warrior, Asif Kapadia, 3,
Beautiful, but sometimes a bit too long story about a warrior trying to escape from his violent past. The throat cutting is almost as sharp as the pictures from Himalaya and Rajasthan.

Entre Nous, Serge Lalou, 2,
'Just us' is a rather slow French story about a family living on an island before the coast. The dominant mother tries to keep them all together and they earn a way of living by means of fishery. The characters are quite convincing (I would imagine people to behave like this when living on an island together, a bit strange, alienated and restless), but the problem is that not enough happens to make them interact with each other. The decision to leave the island is not worked out well and the departure itself not convincing.

Delbaran, Jalili, 2,
Interesting mainly because shot on the border with Afghanistan and with some nice pictures, the movie has the same problem as entre nous. Nothing really happens that makes it interesting. It is a movie shot as a documentary. In a documentary (non-fiction, see also story telling) you record what is there, including the developments taking place during the time of filming, whereas during a movie you create developments that you then record (fiction). It is a bit confusing when directors mix the two as was done in this film. However, I donot say that this cannot yield good cinema; Blackboards last year was an excellent example of how interesting such a movie can be. You do not need real actors when real life is almost fiction. But in this case, some more fiction would have resulted in a better movie.

Zondag 27-1
Lovely Rita, Jessica Hausner, 4,
Lovely Rita is a well-done, but rather traditional movie about a young girl who has reached puberty. The role of Rita is played convincingly. It is a girl who cannot cope any longer with her conservative family and school. You get involved in the problems of the increasingly devilish young lady, loosing her virginity, running away from home and skipping school whenever she likes. The end is sudden and dramatic and can be considered as a kind of Osterreichischen losung.

This is not a love song, Bille Eltringham, 4,
This is not a love song. Another good movie and this time on DV. Interesting pictures of the countryside where two not very intelligent men involved in rather small crime commit accidentally a brutal murder when searching for petrol on a seemingly deserted farm. The film starts slow, but the tension increases as the farmers looking for revenge are getting closer on their heels. The relation between the two fellows is worked out well. Only a pity that there were no subtitles, because although the film is from the UK, the men definitely donot speak english. They pronounce words like pleasant as peasant and one thing was certain. These peasants were not pleasant.

Dinsdag 29-1
The Suicide club, 4, Sono Sion,
This movie was similar to Battle Royal (see festival of last year). I asked the director why and a bit offended he told me that they worked on the movie at the same time. The guy looked normal and almost shy. You'd never imagine that he had the pervert idea of letting 54 Japanese schoolgirls jump in front of the 19.05 subway. The theme of the movie - why do so many youngsters commit suicide in Japan - is worked out in a grotesque and bloody way. The woman who is slicing her own hand in pieces while her daugther is running to daddy telling that mummy is acting funny is perhaps most revolting. The answer remains vague in the film. Is it pop culture, the power of internet or just crime that is causing so many suicides? The director said that because life is so light nowadays, also the value of death is diminishing. he wanted to stress that and exaggerated to avoid youngsters following the example. Perhaps he is right. You never know with these kids from the land of the rising sun.

Pulse, Kiyoshi, 3,
And after suicide club another suicide movie, but this time ghosts are driving people nuts. A thrilling movie, but the story line becomes too weak and the ghosts are not offensive enough to make it very convincing. The suicide 747 was perhaps done before september 11th.

In the bedroom, Todd Field, 3,
Well done movie in which the teenage son of an eldery couple is killed by jealous ex-husband when having relation with attractive woman.in her 30s. The movie is too long and cannot decide between revenge and emotional consequences of the killing. Very strange that killer can get free on bail. After all, this is the US. When the killer is killed, also the movie is.

No Man’s land, Tanovic, 4,
a war movie about a Bosnian and a Serb soldier who end up between enemy lines in a tranch. They do not become brothers and get killed when still fighting after being rescued by Unprofor. The French role in the conflict and UNprofor is portrayed... well ... convincingly, avoiding doing anything unless the media - also present in the film - is too close. The highest officials could not be reached to make the decision to intervene or not in rescuing our poor soldiers, because they went to a congress in Geneva about how to deal with the press. As with other movies I have seen from the region, there is a lot of sarcastic humour. A soldier reading the newspaper in the tranch is shaking his head in disbelief. Can you belief the mess in Ruanda he is asking his comrade. And the pessimist always thinks it cannot go worse, whereas the optimist thinks it can.
But an interesting movie with good acting, especially from the guy who wakes up wounded on a mine that threatens to go off when he gets up. He has to keep laying down the whole movie. And would he be rescued by Unprofor finally?

Millennium Mambo, Hou Hsiao-hsien, Pa1, 3,
Great film maker according to Simon Field. One of the best of the world. Perhaps, but also here a good movie should also involve an interesting story and well developed personalities. It is not the case in this movie. A missed chance, because the "more than sexy Shu Qi" (what more?, certainly not intelligent - perhaps they meant alcoholic). deserves a better movie. The end of the movie is beautiful, but that is only 5 minutes..

Donderdag 31-1
Distance, Hirokazu, 2.
With distance the worst movie up till now. Too slow and the story of the sect is not very clear. I must agree that I was very tired and may have missed the details of the movie. Nice pictures of lakes and forests.

Ghost World, Zwigoff, 4,
Funny movie with nice acting by Steve Buscemi as a record collector and therefore including some good old blues music. The two girls reminded me of Ginger Snaps of last year; revolting against ' normal' society. The strongest side of the movie is not the story, but the many colourfull people that play a role in it. Pity that the second half of the film is a bit less convincing than the first.

Vrijdag 1-2
Weekend plot, Zhang Ming, 2,
A bit like Distance, but even less interesting. When people are away from home they always start to quarrel. This time about a small note, saying ' I love you till death' , which was included in a magazine. At the end it appears no one of the group has written it; a desillusion. The Yangzhe river gives nice views, but the story is too weak to make it rescue the film.

Loin, Techine, Pa1, 3,
Interesting movie about some people in Tanger, Marocco, trying to escape to Europe, smuggling drugs and trying to make a living in this last stop to welfare.

19.30 uur
Surprise film, Pa1,
What a surprise. The latest of Woody Allen could not be screened due to technical problems. Another surprise; the film festival management refused to return the money of the ticket to the people. Only after much quarelling we got some refund. A shame for the festival how they still think they can treat loyal customers. Things have improved in recent years (reservations, less queues etc.), but unfortunately it is still not like a normal professional business.

Zaterdag 2-2
Here to Where, Luchford, 1.
Movies about making a movie mostly suggest a failure in writing a good script. This movie is an example of this lazy behaviour. I am not interested in the director.

19.45 uur
Hedwig and the angry inch. 4.
Good movie about transsexual Hedwig who graduates on the impact of German philosophy on agressiveness in Rock & Roll with the title: you can't Kant, always get what you want. Nice music, beautifull dresses and great acting. Recommended.

21.45 uur
MulHolland drive, 5.
Another great movie by David Lynch. mixing the suspense of Hitchcock and the dark side of Abel Ferrera in a typical Lynch movie. Better than Lost Highway and with humour; the mafia boss who almost vomits the ' finest' espresso offered to him, the movie director finding his wife in bed with the cleaner but having to run himself, the accidental killing of a lady in the next room; it is all difficult to explain, but very funny and at the same time not decreasing the tension of the story. All characters become fluid at the end in a way that only Lynch can do.

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