VIFF 09: Day 10 10/11/2009
Day 10 started with a non-VIFF-related bang. I was invited to an advanced screening of Where the Wild Things Are, which is easily one of the best films of the year. I wont do a write-up for it here, but I have a forthcoming article on the fillm to be published in the Capilano Courier, and I'll make sure to post it here when that time comes.
Directed by Jacques Audiard
One of the most critically acclaimed films of the year, A Prophet is stunningly entertaining, but nothing near what its hype would suggest. The story follows the journey of an Arab named Malik, who is sentenced to six years in prison. He starts out at the bottom of the ladders and becomes a successful criminal on the inside. Malik is not necessarily a bad person, but he goes to great lengths to survive in this environment. The film is very well constructed, and resembles the work of Martin Scorsese. Unfortunately, Audiard fails to develop many of the side characters, and the relationships that Malik maintains. Still, the story is so dramatically strong, that the film does posses some power. Recommended, but not essential viewing.
Directed by Harmony Korine
This is isn't for everyone. Many people walked out during the screening of Trash Humpers, the latest work from enfant terrible Harmony Korine. I, however, was blown away by how strong this film is; certainly one of the best of VIFF. Korine divides people, and typically I've thoroughly enjoyed his films, and Trash Humpers, ironically, is his most mature feature.
The film is about people who the world has rejected, who in turn reject the world. Korine has encapsulated Americana in the most repulsive, but also most effective fashion. The characters destroy TVs, hump trash cans, torture baby dolls, and even murder. Trash Humpers is overflowing with potent images, such as one of the humpers defacating on a suburban driveway or that of a yoga session in a garbage dump. These people are products of our society, who will nurture our future generations. They will laugh and destroy our fabric of society. And they'll dance as they do it. Oh, how they dance.
posted by adam cook