Sunday, January 30, 2022



Okay, I lied. I saw some more movies and could not resist making comment… however brief. Here are three more. Honest, I promise. I am not going to do this again.

ANNETTE: May just be the best movie of which you have never heard. Director Leos Carax is a genius filmmaker who, for reasons I will leave to his biographer, has had too few opportunities to explore his art over a long international career.

Suffice to say, you will not find a more imaginative or innovative movie this year… or anytime soon. Adam Driver’s bravura performance should win him the Oscar for Lead Actor in a Motion Picture. Marion Cotillard is brilliant, beautiful, and sexy; Simon Helberg is simply terrific in support. There should be a special category for young Devyn McDowell who makes a spectacular entrance late in the film surpassing any of the impressive performances by a child seen this year. Can someone, please, produce an “Our Gang” series for Ms. McDowell and the two boys starring in Belfast and C’mon C’mon. I mean, c’mon.

Last note on this: The picture is not for everyone. If you hated La La Land, or even The Umbrellas of Cherbourg, then stick with the movies from Marvel and stay far away from this fanciful, very dark, very sexy… and incredibly special motion picture musical. If you decide to take the plunge, you may brave select motion picture theatres or get it on Amazon Prime.

MASS: A young friend of mine from England, who is building his career as a writer with BBC radio plays, recommended this movie and it makes perfect sense that he would do so. It is a radio play shot on film… the very antithesis of the Carax film, Annette. That should not negate your seeing it. The subject matter and the performances are powerful. Martha Plimpton should certainly get a nod and a nomination from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences in the best actress category. Her co-stars, Jason Isaacs, Ann Dowd, and Reed Birney are every bit as good, but Ms. Plimpton gets the better moments from screenwriter Fran Kranz. It is on Redbox, Apple TV, Vudu and Prime Video.

Titane: (Amazon Prime, YouTube, Vudu) Is two movies in one… and I did not like either of them very much. It begins with a devilish like child who has a thing for automobiles, even growing up to be an adult serial killer who gets impregnated by a Cadillac. Yes, you read that last sentence correctly. I am fairly certain the filmmaker did not intend to make two separate films… apparently, writer Julia Ducournau (if you will excuse the expression) ran out of gas with the first idea, and so moved on to make a completely different (almost equally as weird) part two. Even more weird are the French. This film received the Palme d’Or at Cannes in a move all too typical for this group who, lest we forget, considered Jerry Lewis to be one of the great auteurs of cinema. Laisse-moi Tranquille.

Barney Rosenzweig

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