Saturday, September 11th, 2004
It dawned on me last night what the upcoming week holds for me – lineups, lineups and more lineups. I started TIFF week with the North American premiere of David Gordon Green’s Undertow. I’ve only seen one of his films, the drama-romance All The Real Girls, which I liked quite a bit but wasn’t using as a reference for what to expect from his latest, and it’s just as well – they don’t have much in common, at least not on the surface. Undertow is a fairly grim drama-thriller about a pair of brothers on the run from their ex-con uncle. While fairly tense all the way through, the pace of the film is a bit uneven. You expect the inevitable climax several times before it finally happens and when it does, you feel like it was stalling for no real good reason.
There are no complaints about the performances, however. Jamie Dunn (Billy Elliott) in particular is amazing as the older brother, you’d never suspect that the intense Southern boy on the screen is actually an English kid. All the actors do an excellent job in their roles – Green is proving himself a master at eliciting incredibly naturalistic performances from his cast. As he addressed in the Q&A after the film, he concentrates on catching the pauses and the nuances that you’d get from real people being themselves as opposed to an actor reciting a role. I found the Q&A particularly interesting – I liked getting some insight as to what the director was trying to convey and accomplish with the film, and it got me more excited about what I had just seen than I was while the credits were rolling. And oh yeah, I had thought that the film starred Dylan McDermott but it was actually Dermot Mulroney… Probably a better choice as McDermott would have looked just odd in the cowboy boots and hat.
If you’re looking for more TIFF reviews, these guys are blogging the whole festival.
Some c-c-c-concerts… Lee’s Palace will host a show with Sufjan Stevens on November 16 and then a two-night stand by Hayden on November 18 and 19. I have heard good things about Sufjan. Should I go see Sufjan? Maybe I just like saying ‘Sufjan’. November’s looking kinda empty right now, so I’ll put it on the calendar. Anyway, ticket info on these shows is still forthcoming.
Some Wilco odds and ends: The company that does the visuals for their tours has some samples of their work in the form of concert footage. Lookee here. Also, Billboard has some bits and pieces about the forthcoming Wilco Book, their track on the soundtrack to the Spongebob Squarepants movie and John and Laurie Stirrat’s upcoming record Arabella, out September 21.
Rusted Robot conducts an excellently informal interview with Jay Farrar and helps dispel some of the perception that he lives in some sepia-toned dustbowl-era middle-American parallel world (okay, that was sort of my perception). Turns out he likes to kick back and watch Ali G like everybody else. I haven’t permalinked the interview as the site has some issues with Mozilla, but it’s the September 10 entry, if you’re looking.
I got a new washing machine yesterday. Yeah. Appliances are hott, baby.
np – The Sadies / Favourite Colours