At Film Space on Saturdays at 7 pm
November is “The Month of Noir” at Film Space. December, “The Month of Classics.”
Film Space is to the right and in the back of the CMU Art Museum, in the Media Arts and Design building across from the ballet school. Showings are in a classroom on the second floor or on the roof, weather permitting. A contribution is requested in the donation box at the entrance – you should leave 20 baht. Well worth supporting.
At Film Space Saturday, November 21: Mulholland Dr. / Mulholland Drive (2001) by David Lynch – 147 mins – France/ US, Fantasy/ Mystery/ Romance/ Thriller. Rated R in the US for violence, language, and some strong sexuality. Reviews: Universal acclaim: 81/76 out of 100.
Rotten Tomatoes: Mulholland Dr. makes little sense, even for a Lynch film, but its dreamlike imagery is mesmerizing, and Naomi Watts delivers a great performance.
David Lynch strikes again with this literal nightmare of a motion picture--a brilliant, scathing, hysterical, and haunting ode to Hollywood. In the film, a mysterious dark-haired woman (Laura Elena Harring) emerges from an accident with a purse full of cash and a head full of amnesia. Meanwhile, Betty Elms (Naomi Watts), a wide-eyed gal from Deep River, Ontario, has just landed in Los Angeles with dreams of movie super stardom. When Betty finds the nameless beauty in her aunt's apartment, she is deeply intrigued by the situation and offers to help her. This sends the two women on a bizarre search for the truth through the macabre, sun-soaked streets of the City of Angels, where the mob, a young film director (Justin Theroux), a studio executive with a tiny head, and an enigmatic figure named the Cowboy all float into the picture, then out again, until there is no longer any distinction between what is dream and what is reality. Originally filmed as a pilot for ABC, Lynch's daring, open-ended vision was coldly rejected by the network. As he was about to abandon the project, French producer Pierre Edelman convinced Lynch to rethink it as a feature. The result is this stunning expression of the subconscious, a testament to the power of personal artistic vision.
Variety, Todd Mccarthy: The story is hardly straight in "Mulholland Drive," the compelling but intentionally inscrutable return of the "weird" David Lynch that will please his hardcore fans even if it has them scratching their heads as well. After methodically building for an hour and three-quarters to a mesmerizing level of emotional intensity and narrative fascination, film makes a severe and unwelcome turn down a lost highway, never to return to the main drag. All one can do is shrug and accept that this is Lynch's way, that he's not one to explain or tie things together. But this is what will prevent a general audience from accepting what is, for much of the time, a genuinely ominous and suspenseful thriller.
It's been five years since Lynch was last heard from in his trademark mysterious vein, and it's satisfying to tap into it again; when he's on, as he is for a good long stretch here, the confident strangeness with which he tells his roundabout tales of creeping dread and unexplainable events still retains its potential to intrigue and startle.
"Mulholland Drive" wasn't originally intended as a theatrical feature at all. Born as a pilot for a TV series, it was rejected by ABC and apparently dead when Studio Canal, French producer Alain Sarde and exec producer Pierre Edelman took it over and pumped $7 million more into what had been an $8 million venture, for additional shooting and a new round of post-production. Some of the dangling story threads and isolated characters (such as the likes of Robert Forster's barely seen detective and a scraggly "monster") could conceivably be attributed to their planned long-range use on TV. But what's now onscreen cannot be mistaken for anything other than a real movie that, especially due to its terrific soundtrack, will best be experienced in a theater.
At Film Space Saturday, November 28: The Cry of the Owl / Le cri du hibou (1987) by Claude Chabrol – 102 mins – Italy/ France, Drama/ Romance/ Thriller.
Rotten Tomatoes: Based on the novel by suspense master Patricia Highsmith (The Talented Mr. Ripley), acclaimed French director ClaudeChabrol'sThe Cry of the Owl is a tight, edgy thriller. The acclaimed, widely viewed film was the recipient of a French Academy Award upon its release in 1987, and has gone on to be viewed as one of the landmark psychological suspense films of the 1980's. When a Peeping Tom finally meets the object of his infatuation, he finds that she is even more disturbed than he is. Upon becoming close, the two enter into a bizarre love triangle that becomes more violent and scary as time goes on.
December is “The Month of Classics” at Film Space.
At Film Space Saturday, December 5: No showing! Holiday – Father’s Day/ The King’s Birthday.
At Film Space Saturday, December 12: A Clockwork Orange (1971) by Stanley Kubrick – 136 mins – UK/ US, Crime/ Drama/ Thriller. Originally rated X in the US, later (1973) the cut version was rated R. Banned in the UK, and then the film was withdrawn from distribution in the UK by the director. In most countries rated 18. Generally favorable reviews: 78/84 out of 100.
In future Britain, charismatic delinquent Alex DeLarge is jailed and later volunteers for an experimental aversion therapy developed by the government in an effort to solve society's crime problem... but not all goes to plan.
Rotten Tomatoes: Disturbing and thought-provoking, A Clockwork Orange is a cold, dystopian nightmare with a very dark sense of humor.
From its opening shot of Malcolm McDowell staring with evil intent directly into the camera (which pulls back to reveal him drinking a glass of milk), Stanley Kubrick's brilliant A Clockwork Orange announces itself as a completely new kind of viewing experience. The film, set in an unidentified future, overwhelms the senses with its almost comic depictions of rape and violence set to an upbeat classical and pop music score. Kubrick based his chilling masterpiece on Anthony Burgess's culture-shaking novel about a young man growing into adulthood, but unable to shake his huge problem with authority figures. The first part of the film shows Alex (a career-defining performance by McDowell) and his "droogs" (his cohorts) indulging in what they refer to as "a little bit of the old ultraviolence." After establishing Alex and co. as unremitting psychopaths, Kubrick's movie changes tact, and shows Alex getting caught and forced to undergo controversial treatment that will make it impossible for him to commit violent acts, leading to a fascinating ending to the film. A Clockwork Orange purposely confuses crime and punishment, cause and effect, hero and villain, irony and satire, and many other concepts, creating a truly unique work of art in the process. Its magnificent, colorful, futuristic set designs and utter determination to shock, frighten, and thoroughly entertain left audiences reeling in the '70s. Kubrick even withdrew the film from distribution in the UK, after reading newspaper reports of people dressing up as Alex and his Droogs and meting out their own brand of ultraviolence (it was subsequently re-released after his death). One thing is for sure: No one who has seen it has ever been able to hear "Singin' in the Rain" or Beethoven again in quite the same way.