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This is yet another incarnation of my personal blog. Here's where you can read about what I do when I'm not at work: hiking, seeing plays and other shows, eating, traveling, etc.

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SIFF 2012: Second Week

Posted by gck Sunday, June 3, 2012

Film watching slowed down for the week – no double headers, even on Memorial Day. Worked one shift, a will call shift at the Egyptian. It was pretty tame. The busy shift would have been the one right before mine, seating 500+ people for a sold out Beasts of the Southern Wild. We got word during the film that a woman had climbed over the balcony and fallen down, and I was picturing a body splattered all over a row of people, but fortunately that rumor was exaggerated. Film count: 12. Volunteer vouchers: 10.

Future Lasts Forever
(also: Gelecek Uzun Surer)
Turkey, 2011
Genre: Drama, Social Issues
Watched: SIFF 2012, Uptown
Rating: *** (out of 5)

“…and so does this film,” says the review from The Stranger. I chose this one to watch over Simon and the Oaks, even though I suspected Simon was likely to be the better film. But the trailer for this film was so beautiful that I couldn’t resist. If the pacing of the film had been on par with the trailer, this would have been much better. I can take pretty slow movies, but the endless shots of the main character sitting around or sleeping or whatever was pretty excessive. In the opening credits, there was a logo for “Free Rasoulof and Panahi,” and the whole idea of the girl traveling around to collect elegies had definite resemblance to the man collecting tears in Rasoulof’s The White Meadows. There weren’t enough elegies, though. The beginning of the film is gripping, the end of the film is beautiful as the characters journey through Hakkari, but it drags on way too long in between. Context on the Kurds and Armenians in Turkey would have been useful before, but the film did get me to read more about this afterwards.

USA, 2012
Genre: Drama, Social Issues
Watched: SIFF 2012, Everett Performing Arts Center
Rating: ****1/2 (out of 5)

I thought I was going to miss this film altogether because the two Seattle screenings were during my half marathon weekend. But after waffling for awhile, I decided that it was worth it to drive up to Everett to catch the last screening. This was one of the more talked about movies of SIFF 2012. It’s directed by Megan Griffiths, who also directed The Off Hours, which I had considered seeing at SIFF last year. It was shot pretty much entirely in Washington, and I happily recognized some of the Eastern Washington locations posing very convincingly for the Southwest. Being a local film, a lot of the people involved were in attendance, which was fun to see.

What wasn’t fun to see was this movie. It’s a challenging one, based on a true story about human trafficking. Jamie Chung gave a fantastic portrayal of a girl who transforms from a naïve teenager making a wrong decision at a wrong time to a hardened, determined young woman who manipulates her way up the chain in order to escape it. The film is particularly strong in its portrayal of the victims of these sex rings and why it is so difficult for them to escape their fates. What I wished had been explored more were the mindsets of their captors and jailers. So many of the people involved must have been aware that these girls were underage and unwilling, and they somehow felt like it was okay to treat them in this way. A Romanian film, Loverboy, played at the same day and time in Seattle and supposedly focused more on that side. It would have been interesting to see those two in parallel.

South Korea, 2011
Genre: Chick Flick, Comedy
Watched: SIFF 2012, Egyptian
Rating: ****1/2 (out of 5)

Maybe rated a little high because it provided the comic relief I needed after a series of pretty heavy films. This was a really fun one to see with a female friend. She pointed out how awesome it was to see a female about Asian women that focused on empowerment instead of endless suffering. SO true! It’s about a group of gal pals from childhood that reunited later on in life. It’s fun to see the characters taking a nostalgic look back to their childhood versions and being reinspired by their own dreams. The childhood rivalry between the “Sunny” gang and their rivals is over-the-top and hilarious. Basically, to summarize: I am the protagonist of my own life, bitches!


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