Last friday, I started with Help Me Eros, a Taiwanese film that follows a formerly rich man slowly selling off all his former belongings in order to survive, the helpline worker he calls often, and the scantily-clad women who sell betel nuts and cigarettes on the streets of Taiwan. Very interesting, minimalistic but compelling, and sometimes visually stunning.
Jack Brooks: Monster Slayer was a cheesy, low budget horror flick about a plumber fighting monsters. Had a few good moments.
Saturday started early with Global Impact, a collection of animated shorts, many of a political bent. A mixed bag, obviously, but overall very nice. My favorite was the very clever, but slightly too long The History of America, which told the story of a war between cowboys and astronauts.
I had very low expectations for the Indie comedy Young People Fucking, but ended up enjoying it tremendously. It even made me laugh out loud at times. It follows five very different couples having sex: co-workers on a first date, two exes, a pair of best friends, a married couple who have lost their sexual spark, and a single guy who gets dragged into a threesome-of-sorts by his roommate.
The Hong Kong crime film Triangle has three directors (Tsui Hark, Ringo Lam and Johnnie To) each handling parts of the story in their own style. It's every bit as scattered and schizophrenic as you might expect, at times boring, at others ludicrous. I wasn't a fan.
You've probably seen tv commercials selling The Forbidden Kingdom as a Jackie Chan-Jet Li martial arts extravaganza, but really it's a Wizard of Oz-style kids film about a modern American kid who travels back in time to save mythical China from an evil warlord and learn an important lesson about... blah, blah. It's ok, but it's better that you know what you're in for.
After that I saw Film Noir, an animated noir story about an amnesiac man waking up next to a corpse and trying to figure out who he is, what he's done, and why people are trying to kill him. It's a very earnest attempt and often succeeds, but I found a few of the moments a little too convenient.
Timecrimes is a light sci-fi, Spanish film about how much an ordinary guy can mess things up with just a little bit of time travel.
And that turned out to be my last film. On Monday, I hurt my back and decided to play hooky on the rest of the festival.