Another 3 films today, luckily in 3 different venues so I can avoid deep vein thrombosis as I walk rapidly between them (and duck and weave amongst the dawdlers who throng the city pavements).
The day started at the Forum, with “Mississippi Grind”. A film that stars Ben Mendelsohn, Ryan Reynolds, fabulous music and the streetscapes of St Louis and New Orleans. Ben Mendlesohn is absolutely wonderful in this film – worth seeing for his performance alone. He plays Gerry, a gambling addict who owes money to everyone and has lost his wife & child thanks to his gambling. Ryan Reynolds isn’t bad either – he plays Curtis, a less easy to grasp character, what exactly are his motives one wonders. They form a bond and go on a road trip to New Orleans, in the hope of winning it big at a poker game (or at least that is Gerry’s hope).
From America I then journeyed to France, with “My Golden Days” , which was very french! At 120 minutes it outstayed its welcome for me, but the young girl playing Esther (Lou Roy-Lecollinet) was translucent on the screen. Coming of age in the 80’s, dysfunctional family, some drugs, sex, academia, lots and lots of smoking (amazing they didn’t all die in their 20’s from lung cancer).
And then I went to Tehran, with “Tehran Taxi” – Jafar Panahi’s latest film. Panahi has been banned from film making in Iran for the last 5 years, but has found various ways to still make films. This sees him driving a taxi with several cameras mounted on the dashboard. Supposedly a film made up of real people in his taxi, it is obvious that there is some blurring between reality and fabricated reality, but which is real and which not? Quite entertaining, and a clever idea (although I did want to spank his precocious niece!).