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Grindhouse’s Spoof Trailers and the Belgian Groundhog Day

Posted by: Matthew Turner 10/04/2008 @ 16:44
Subject: Film

Films seen so far this year: 102

Grindhouse at the Curzon Soho
A couple of weeks ago, I went to the Curzon Soho's Midnight Movie  screening of Grindhouse, the second in their ongoing series of late night cult movie events. As with Society the month before, it was a huge amount of fun. The atmosphere before the film was like a house party made up of dedicated film fanatics and even the goodie bags were better this time round. As for the film itself, the two films (Robert Rodriguez's Planet Terror and Quentin Tarantino's Death Proof) worked brilliantly well together, with several little crossover moments that you might have missed by seeing them separately. Death Proof in particular is vastly improved by being a lot shorter, although Tarantino's annoying cameo is still present and (in)correct. It was also worth seeing for the spoof trailers, in the same style as the Machete trailer that played with Planet Terror: Rob Zombie's Werewolf Women of the S.S. (with Nicolas Cage!), Edgar Wright's Don't and Eli Roth's particularly gruesome Thanksgiving. Incidentally, Rodriguez recently announced that he would be making a full-length Machete movie, which I for one can't wait for, as I've always been a big fan of Danny Trejo. Grindhouse is currently doing a tour of the UK (including some other London venues) so keep an eye on your local listings as it's well worth seeing in its originally intended format. As yet there's no formal announcement on next month's Midnight Movie, but there are rumours of an all-nighter of Romero's Living Dead movies. You can join the Curzon's mailing list by sending an email to midnightmovies@curzoncinemas.com.

Please Release Me: One Fine Day
One Fine Day (not to be confused with the underrated George Clooney / Michelle Pfeiffer rom-com) is yet another film that deserves a proper theatrical release. It's a Belgian comedy starring Benoit Poelvoorde as one of life’s losers who wakes up one day to discover that he can do no wrong. Here's what I wrote about it on my Edinburgh Film Festival blog two years ago:

Benoit Poelvoorde (from Man Bites Dog) plays Francois, one of life’s perennial losers. Francois has become accustomed to his daily routine of constant misery, from problems with his ex-wife, to being ignored at work, right down to an exploding coffee machine and noisy neighbours. However, one day he wakes up and everything is perfect: his coffee machine works, the neighbours are quiet, he gets promoted at work and the pretty girl he has a crush on sits next to him at lunch. The next day is the same and things just keep getting better and better for Francois. Surely it can’t last? There’s a definite hint of “Le jour de Groundhog” here and the clever script explores some intriguing ideas about happiness and what happens when you get everything you ever wanted. Poelvoorde is terrific as Francois and the film is frequently hilarious and full of inventive touches, even if the surreal musical number seems a touch out of place (delightful as it is). Four stars.

Top 10 Films On Release This Week (as recommended by me):

A few changes this week with [REC], Lonesome Jim and The Devil Came On Horseback all making it into the top ten.

1. There Will Be Blood
2. The Diving Bell and the Butterfly
3. No Country For Old Men
4. [REC]
5. Lonesome Jim
6. The Orphanage
7. The Devil Came On Horseback
8. 27 Dresses
9. Son of Rambow
10. You, the Living

DVD of the Week: The Darjeeling Limited (out now, RRP £19.99)

This week's DVD of the Week is The Darjeeling Limited, directed by Wes Anderson. It's a delightful tale of sibling rivalry and family dysfunction starring Owen Wilson, Adrien Brody and Jason Schwartzman as three bickering brothers taking a train across India. It's beaufifully shot, superbly written and also features one of the best soundtracks of the year. Sadly though, the extras are a bit of a let-down – there's no commentary, no interviews with cast and crew, no blooper reel and no deleted scenes. Instead, there's a 20 minute behind-the-scenes featurette that includes lots of (admittedly quite good) B-roll footage and someone pointing out the meticulously hand-painted set decorations.

And finally...
This seems like the appropriate place to mention this – it's Wes Anderson's rather wonderful ad for American Express.

Comments

by  thedalyemail  11/04/2008 @ 11:10
Cheers for the blog, Matthew. Do you know whether One Fine Day is being shown anywhere or have its showings been and gone? Cheers.
by  Anonymous  16/04/2008 @ 13:57
One Fine Day is an amazing film and I'm thrilled to hear that you're putting in back on the radar as most people won't have heard of it so will be missing out.
by  Matthew Turner  26/04/2008 @ 13:49
thedalyemail > Sadly, I saw it a couple of years ago at the Edinburgh Film Festival and, as yet, there's no sign of it getting a decent release (hence its inclusion in the "Please Release Me" section). That's not to say it won't get one eventually - there are several films coming out soon that were at the same festival, so keep an eye out. However, it's also available on Amazon.fr, with English subtitles: http://www.amazon.fr/Du-jour-lendemain-Beno%C3%AEt-Poelvoorde/dp/B000GCFAMK
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