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Mulligains (2008)

Mulligans (2008)

Actors: Charlie David, Thea Gill, Dan Payne

Release Date: 2008

IMDB

Amazon.co.uk

Amazon.com

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Rating: 3/5

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College Jock Tyler has the perfect family, they spend time together during the summer holidays at a perfect lake house, he and his father play golf together, he enjoys wild parties and plenty of girls, things can't get any better. This summer however that's all about to change when he invites his best friend Chase to come back with him.

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Treeless Mountain Review

A Korean indie drama that follows two young girls who are left by their mother (who goes searching for their estranged father). The girls are sent to live with various, incompetent relatives such as an alcoholic aunt and out on the farm with their grandparents. Writer/Director So Yong Kim does an excellent job of establishing intimacy by using a lot of close up shots on the faces of the two very expressive young actors. Though this film is obviously shot on a low budget, it has excellent cinematography, thanks to Kim's sharply focused aesthetic vision.

My initial thoughts when I heard about this movie was that it would be an overly sentimental tear-jerker, but that turned out not to be the case at all. In fact, if there is a knock on this film, it may be that it lacks strong enough conflict to really resonate. However, to me the movie is a lot like the song used in the its trailer, "Layers" by Asobi Seksu - it's beauty comes from its understatement.

Trailer for Treeless Mountain

Delirious Revisited

Last August, Deb and I had the opportunity to attend a special screening of director Tom DiCillo's Delirious. I wrote about the film the next day (which, if you check out the comments, generated a response from DiCillo himself). In subsequent weeks, due to lousy distribution (think Katrina-relief-effort lousy) and despite a rave review from Roger Ebert, Delirious came and went, lasting only a month in New York, a week in Los Angeles, and appearing on less than two-dozen screens in the entire U.S.

 

Last week Delirious was released on DVD. I encourage you to run out and buy, rent, or steal a copy immediately. You won't be disappointed (especially if you're a fan of the great character-study films of the Seventies). Rewatching the film today, I was once again blown away. Not only does it boast fantastic performances (by Steve Buscemi, Michael Pitt, and Gina Gershon, to name the obvious few), it's also a stunning piece of cinema.

Fortunately, the DVD transfer captures the movie's rich colors; scenes like the one where the Pitt character, walking through the streets of New York and realizing he's in love, are nothing short of visual poetry. Plus, there's a great commentary track by DiCillo, who has crafted a film, despite all third-party efforts to the contrary, worth remembering.

What the Hell?

This morning, in The New York Sun, there's an article about how Manhattan's Anthology Film Archives (according to its website, "the first museum devoted to film as an art form") is reviving the early movies of Albert Brooks; specifically, his first two features, the wonderful and exquisite Real Life and Modern Love (the former, made in 1979, an extremely prescient commentary on reality television, the latter taking neurotic romanticism to heights even Woody Allen never dreamed possible).

Regarding Brooks's third movie, Lost in America, the article mentions that "'there's no print of it anywhere.' An apparent victim of indifference on the part of Warner Bros., which owns the film, Lost in America has fallen through the distribution cracks."

No print of it anywhere?! It's not unusual in this day of film restoration awareness (thanks to the efforts of directors like Martin Scorsese) to hear how 90 percent of American silent movies have been lost, as well as half of all the films made in the U.S. before 1950. But we're talking about a movie that was made in 1985, for Chrissake! As well, Lost in America took in more at the box office than Brooks's first two films combined. And nobody thought to preserve a single print?

I don't know about you, but that really grinds my gears.
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Cancel the Bigger Boat

Roy Scheider died earlier this week. Damn. He was one of those actors who was often much better than the material he was given (a curse that followed him from his first screen credit: TV's The Edge of Night).

But all that's moot, because he appeared in one of the most entertaining films ever made (Jaws, where he ad-libbed the line "You're gonna need a bigger boat"), one of the most exciting (his reaction shots behind Gene Hackman lent humanity to the often cold and heartless French Connection), one of the most overlooked (William Friedkin's difficult and uncompromising Sorcerer), and two of the most daring (David Cronenberg's version of Naked Lunch and his narration for Paul Schrader's Mishima: A Life in Four Chapters). Most importantly, he starred in (and received an Academy Award nomination for Best Actor for) Bob Fosse's brilliant All that Jazz, which is just flat-out one of the best movies ever made.

Roy Scheider was a classic example of one of those actors, like Bogart, who always, regardless of circumstance, rose to the occasion; so that, in those those few-and-far-between instances when the occasions rose to him, he was ready.

He is already missed.
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