9 Songs (2004)

What is impressive how many different kind of films Michael Winterbottom made. Ok, till now, I have seen only three, but they are three totally different themes / views / approaches / whatever … Just hit on the side-bar his name under film directors to see what I mean. Anyway.

9 songs. The songs are not (for me) what was intriguing. They do not represent my favorite kind of music (apart from Michael Nyman whose music I adore) and “love burns” of BRMC (Black Rebel Motorcycle Club) – which I really liked. Looking for the last one, I listened once more to a couple of others and they seemed …. better. Who knows, if I listen more, I may like them more, but the idea is not to review songs here, but the movie 🙂

So, there is a … triangle of themes.

  • The ice, the vast space, the cold, the way nature works, the solitude and agoraphobia (oxymoron as it may seem) in Antarctica, a place that was almost unknown till a few decades ago
  • The music, liberating, exhilarating, thrilling, creating contradictory feelings like “feeling lonely among another 5.000 people!” (how true, really, as if this is the only case!
  • Love, carnal love, with no boundaries, no inhibitions, in a “take it as it comes” tune

There are so many things in common between these three (seemingly) different themes: the solitude one may feel in any of the three, the exploration of the unknown, the thrill of the discovery, the things each one hides at a first level…May be more.

It is a film, which despite its hard-core erotic scenes, is not a porn. Contradiction in terms? May be so. For some it may be offending. Not for me.

My rating: 07/10

The Killer Inside Me (2010)

One gets out of the movie theater with mixed feelings about this film of Michael Winterbottom. It is one of those films that really immerse you in their story which is totally convincing. The tag line at the beginning of the film “you live in a small town and the people think that they really know you” is a tip for the main character, a town’s sheriff who is like a bomb ready to explode. That person’s mind is revealed step by step by his actions in the present and flash-backs in the past that shaped his character.

The film is a remake of a 1976 film with the same title, based in a novel described as “one of the most blistering and uncompromising crime novels ever written.” It is a statement about how cleverness and sanity are two independent qualities, how things that happen to a small age can really damage a personality, the extent to which love (or is it depending sickness?) may be forgiving, the dirty sick tricks played even in small societies.

There is extreme, shocking violence in this film, which is integral part of the main character and justifiably presented. You may want to consider it before seeing it.

My rating: 08/10

The Shock Doctrine (2009)

The Shock Doctrine is not an easy film to watch and certainly not one to have a good time. It is a documentary created by Michael Winterbottom and Mat Whitecross based on a book with the same title by Naomi Klein . It explains how some things happening in Greece now, have happened in other places of the world before.

The film was one of the six movies that Philip showed last week (see related blog entry).

Why should one spoil its – already spoiled – mood after a tiring, working day and watch it? Well, it might provide a different angle on viewing things. We need it!

My rating: 08/10