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Brothers Bloom News

Posted by: Matthew Turner 30/04/2009 @ 14:39
Subject: Film

Films seen so far this year: 125
Films seen last week: X-Men Origins: Wolverine, Cloud 9, Hannah Montana: The Movie, Ghosts of Girlfriends Past, Funuke: Show Some Love, You Losers!, Raiders of the Lost Ark: The Adaptation, The End, The Private Lives of Pippa Lee

Raiders of the Lost Ark: The Adaptation
Earlier this week I went to a charity premiere of Raiders of the Lost
Ark: The Adaptation
. As the title suggests, it's a shot-for-shot remake of Raiders that was made in the ‘80s by two 12-year-old kids using basic VHS and Betamax video cameras over a period of seven years. Aside from the home movie style picture quality, the film is incredibly well done and you spend the whole movie (it lasts as long as Raiders) wondering how they're going to pull off the rolling boulder or the falling statue stunt or the truck sequence or the submarine bit or the melting faces bit and they manage it every time. The truck sequence, in particular, is just as impressive and exciting as Spielberg's version. The acting varies wildly too, but Indy (the producer), Belloc (the director) and Marion (the only girl they knew at the time) are, luckily, all pretty good.

The most amusing thing is the actors keep changing in size (unsurprisingly, since they age from 12-17) and Marion goes through a series of 1980s hairstyles. There was also a highly entertaining Q and A afterwards, including questions from little kids (‘Why doesn't Indy get killed at the end?’) with the filmmakers being surprisingly honest about how they felt about Indiana Jones and the Perspex Skull. Several superb anecdotes about how close the director came to dying (trapped inside a rapidly heating mould they were making of his face), their mothers finding out about the dangerous stunts they were doing (a shot of one of them being lit on fire made it onto the local news) and exactly how a 12-year-old kid goes about securing a submarine (basically, you ask every year until you're 15 and have a proper shot list and they say yes). It won't be getting a theatrical release for obvious reasons, but it seems to be having a lot of charity screenings so there's a chance it'll be shown again. Oh, and to add to the atmosphere, the pre-film snacks consisted of sheep eyes (lychees with blueberries), snake (cucumber-wrapped sushi) and monkey brains (fruit compote shaped like scoops of brain).

Trailerwatch: The Brothers Bloom
There's STILL no sign of a UK release date for Brick director Rian Johnson's wonderful The Brothers Bloom, but here's a trailer to whet your appetite anyway. Mark Ruffalo and Adrien Brody star as two con-artist brothers who lure a beautiful and eccentric heiress (Rachel Weisz) into their latest plot. The trailer gives you some idea of the film's quirkiness and has some great moments (the longer version of Weisz’s ‘hobbies’ montage is even better), but it also keeps a few things back such as just how brilliant Rinko Kikuchi is as silent explosives expert Bang Bang. I can't wait for the film to come out on DVD, just so someone can edit all her scenes together and stick them up on YouTube.

Top 10 Films On Release This Week (as recommended by me):
Only three changes this week, with new releases Is Anybody There?
(featuring the best performance from Michael Caine in years) and X-Men Origins: Wolverine both making it into the top ten. Also, it turned out my week-in-advance listings source was wrong about The Damned United last week, so it's back in the top ten, although it is definitely into its second run so catch it now while you still can.

1. Let the Right One In
2. I Love You, Man
3. The Grocer's Son
4. Encounters at the End of the World
5. Shifty
6. Is Anybody There?
7. X-Men Origins: Wolverine
8. State of Play
9. Outlander
10. The Damned United

DVD of the Week: Gonzo: The Life and Work of Dr. Hunter S. Thompson (out now, price £17.99)
This week's DVD of the Week is Gonzo: The Life and Work of Dr. Hunter S. Thompson, director Alex Gibney's excellent documentary about notorious gonzo journalist Hunter S Thompson. It's narrated by Johnny Depp who became good friends with Thompson when he played him in Terry Gilliam's Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas. The film concentrates on Thompson's most productive period, between 1965 and 1975, using a wealth of material that includes audio clips, home movie footage, photos and lengthy passages from his books and articles, as well as interviews with friends, colleagues, people he wrote about (including former President Jimmy Carter) and both his ex-wives. There are also sections on the making of Fear and Loathing and, in particular, Thompson's fascinating coverage of the 1972 Presidential campaign. In short, this is a superbly directed, hugely entertaining documentary that's a treat for both newcomers and aficionados of Thompson's work. The DVD also comes with a great extras package that includes seven deleted and extended scenes, extended interviews with 13 interviewees (including Jimmy Carter and Ralph Steadman), a 20 minute interview with Gibney, a gallery, the trailer, a tribute song written for Thompson after the film, a gallery of Steadman's drawings and a commentary by Gibney. Highly recommended.

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