Film lovers who also enjoy a spot of hyperlocal reviewing may have felt a bit let down by the Blog since the departure of cinematic guru Ashley Clark. Fortunately, though, he now has a replacement in the form of Brixtoner and all-round good egg Robert Makin, who will be bringing us his take on seven days of Ritzy Cinema. Enjoy…
Well no one could ever accuse The Ritzy for not being varied and interesting. This week there’s a huge range of cinematic flavours from across the globe catering for even the most esoteric tastes.
As far as mainstream Hollywood releases are concerned you can still catch screenings of Woody Allen’s latest Blue Jasmine, and Tom Hanks in Captain Phillips. Loki is still getting hammered in Thor: The Dark World, and Sandra Bullock and George Clooney are still lost in space in Gravity.
Slightly more leftfield is Destin Cretton’s Short Term, which is based on his own experiences working in a rehab centre for troubled teens and stars Brie Larson.
Even more leftfield is documentary Mike Kelly Mobile Homestead Going East following the journeys of artist Mike Kelly who before his death in 2012 created a drivable replica of his childhood home and proceeded to drive it throughout Detroit.
In the British corner we have Philomena directed by Stephen Frears and starring Steve Coogan as a journalist helping Judi Dench as the film’s namesake desperately trying to trace the illegitimate son that was taken her away from her during her time in an Irish convent.
In the German corner we have Werner Herzog’s outstanding ode to F.W Murnau, 1979’s Nosferatu The Vampyre, with Klaus Kinski as the doomed monster enraptured by the spectral beauty of the unmistakable Isabelle Adjani, and lots of rats. Lots and lots of really well shot rats.
But if Herzog’s voyage into chilling, allegorical horror isn’t your thing then there’s multi award winning Chilean comedy drama from the producers of the excellent NO, Sebastian Leilo’s Gloria that apparently features an amazing central performance from Paulina Garcia.
Representing the French we have the recently restored version of René Clément’s thriller Plein Soleil (1960) starring film legend and style icon Alain Delon in the first screen adaptation of Patricia Highsmith’s celebrated 1955 novel The Talented Mr Ripley.
Film Africa 2013 film festival continues to celebrate the best of African cinema with screenings of two nautical related and intensely political human dramas from Senegal, The Pirogue (2012) and Atlantiques (2009). A thirty something French/Algerian man searches for his identity in Andalucia (2007), and director Michael Adeyemi takes a scrupulous look into the circumstances that lead to his friend Sodiq Adeojo being arrested and convicted of a gang related shooting in his personal documentary Sodiq (2013).
Other films in the festival include 2morrow Far Away (2012), a documentary following four young teens from a Parisian suburb that gain the opportunity to cover the 2010 South African World Cup, L’Afrance (2001) detailing a young Sengalese student’s immigration limbo, and the highly controversial and deeply topical The President (2013) which aims to address Cameroon’s current political climate.