INDEPENDENT USA FILMS OF 2013-
You know, I for one, root for the Indepndent US Filmakers, really I love theor work, some of them actually present to me the right portrayal of USA, much better ththan Fox channel, or CNN. Really.
Of course, there are the bad ones, often I found myself, looking at an attractive woman Next to me, or in front of me, rather than watching a farting cliche ridden bulshitting Indie(And that’s including Hollywood), which goes on and on and on..
But. this year there were some wonderful movies, which presented me with an America I didn’t quite know. I wrote extensively about some of them, and some of them I neglected to write, so here, with my apologies, my summation of US Indie Movies. And here are the best Indies of 2013(With one or two exceptions)
Let’s start with Sarah Poley”Stories we tell”, which I clearly think it’s the best of the crop. A Documentary, who is a melodrama,, detective film roll into one, a twisted convulting tale of an identity, infidelity, and above all a daring film made by actress-director Sarah Polley, who did a movie whose candour, empathy and bittersweet portrayal of a family superced any fictional movie I saw from North-America.
Next come “The place beyond the pines”, Cianfrance film is about the choices we make in our lives, and both protagonists, Ryan Gosling’s Luke, a stunt biker, meeting his abandoned son, and determine to be a good father, onm the other fence we witness, Avery Cross(Bradley Cooper) an ambitious cop, both of these men will pay a heavy price, and their choices affects their families. Cooper, Gosling, Eva Mendez as Romina, Luke’s lost love are superb, and the movie is leaving you with an everlasting impression.
If one want to compare Hollywood to Indie, there is one name which can sum it up-Michael Shannon, a wonderful character actor, utterly wasted in”Man of Steel”, appear in Jeff Nichols:”Mud”, he is such a belivable good actor, an impressive both physically and as an actor. Here, he’s an uncle whose a diver, a beliver in the philosophy expressed in”The Beach Boys”, and a womanizer to boot. What a performance, such a difference from his unfortunate turn in “Steel”. “Mud” also have a roster of actors, Mathew McConaughey, gives an exceptionally performance as an escaped convict, wrongfuly accused, whose love for Juniper,his girlfriend(Reese Witherspoon in a very exact and beautiful performance as a rarther confused Southern Belle), gets him in hot water. But the tale isn’t really about Mud, it’s about childhood ,and the harsh realities, which shatter it. Two children, one Ellis and the other Neckbone, who find Mud and draws to the adventure spawned by their encounter, one of them will lose his house, his iinocense, and the other will have a new outlook on life. Southern tales in American films usally veer from the bizzare to the sentimental, here we see one of the few movies , in which the South isn’t a symbol but a a very belivable geopographical place,
“Ain’t them bodies saint” is also a rural setting movie,(Texas) his star crossed lovers doom to suffer, and one of them willl meet his faith, David Lowery, direct this movie like an ancient greek tragedy, true there are some unexplained trio of evil persons pursecuting the hero(Casey Affleck in an utterly belivable performance), however the story is belivable, realistic to a point, and dosen’t drag itself to be a symbolic picture. And,Rooney Marah is a very promising actress, who can essay the contradictory roles of a conniving bitch, and a vulnerable woman, caught on conflicting sides.(As she so aptly portrayed in”Side effects” And “AIn’t”).
“Before Midnight” sums up the trilogy which started, in 1995(“Before Sunrise”, and continue with the 2004 (“Before Sunset”), no doubt Linklater thought about Truffaut’s Antoine Doinel’s character, when he and his actors wrote both trilogy’s screenplays. The maturing relations between Jesse Wallace and Celine, now parents of two daughters, living in Paris, is a very intimate portrayal, whos two actors/writers hold it together, and you seem to be hanging around two of your best friends, watching their life and hope that all will be well.
Two dissapointment, one is a let down”The Butler”, the other “Blue Jasmine” is a lesser one. Lee Daniels made two wonderful pictures, an ex prodcer, he turned to b a very good director with his two movies “Push”, and “Paperboy”. Alas,”The butler” is a big cliche ridden movie, a dissapointment of mega proportions, a good story is turning respectable in the worst kind of the word, A Long winding pedestrian guest starred film(Jane Fonda as Nancy Reagean, Alan Rickman as Donald Reagan), The one redeeming quality are Forrest Whittaker and Oprah Winfrey, who prove that fantastic actors, sometimes save a picture from being a bad movie.
“Blue Jasmine” is Woody Allen’s attempt in combin a sub Tennesee Williams and a domestic bittersweet comedy. It’s not quite working, the story about a wealthy socialite whose bringing her own downfall and her relations with her sister, isn’t at all convincing at times. Still Cate Blanchet, and Sally Hawkins, along with Bobby Canavalle(His Chilly is a pure delight and one of the really good sides of this film), Louis C.K. and Peter Skarsgard are joy to watch. But the Woody Allen’s touch is getting rustier each year.
“Enough Said” and” Frances Ha”, complete he roster of ine comedies. Seeing Greta Gerwing dancing to the tunes of “David Bowie’s “Modern love”, is a potent sequence, Noah Baumbach'(Along with Gerwig as a co-writer) portrayal of the compromises, that one young woman is facing , along one year is beautiful, true one can argue that Black and White isn’t really ther right kind of shooting such a picture, but this is a mere quibling. It’s a wonderful woman film, bittersweet,and a jewel to watch.
So , that leave us with Nicole Hollofcener’s”Enough Said”. A close study of romantic involvment ofmature adults, funny, and utterly realistic, and James Gandolfini’s performance as Albert, Eva’s(Dreyfus) love, reminded us about the enormous abilities of the late actor, sadly plucked from us. Julia- Louis Dreyfus’s Eva is a portrayal of a woman, whose relations with Marianne client (Kathrine Keener), who happens to be Albert’s ex is funny and the movie itself prove once and for all that rom coms can be a very movinmg portrayals of men and women’s battle of the sexes, the movie is a sure fire entry to the romantic comedy’s pantheon, and since when did we see something good from this genre?
THE BEST OF US& CANADIAN INDIES
1)Stories we tell(Can-2013)
2)The place beyond the pines
6)”Ain’t them bodies saint”