Thursday, 14 December 2017

Dec 14
Slack Bay
Some new DVD releases for holiday watching

This week seems to be the calm before the storm of Boxing Day and New Year's releases, except of course for the latest Star Wars film, The Last Jedi. Unable to make my preview, due to clashes with real life, I think I'll just leave it at the moment, as die-hard fans will go anyway, regardless of what I have to say! So to fill out your watching in preparation for the holiday season, I'll refresh you on a few latest DVD releases, and refer you to my reviews of said releases. This should fit in well with my preparations for the big list of fave films for 2017!
Slack Bay
Director: Bruno Dumont
Length: 122 min
© Sharmill- - not Laurel & Hardy, but funny in this
bizarre French black comedy
Here's one of the weirdest films I've seen in a long time. Wealthy family the Van Peteghems visit their holiday home each year in a part of northern France where the local impoverished mussel-gatherers are slightly odd, to say the least. When a number of wealthy visitors to the region disappear, Laurel and Hardy look-alike detectives from Calais turn up, and things get even stranger. The film appears to be some left-of-centre commentary upon strata of French society, especially the upper crust who are risibly puffed up and overblown. Fabrice Luchini plays a foppish husband, with a melodramatic wife (Valerie Bruni Tedeschi), two obnoxious kids, and an even more overblown sister, played by the wonderful Juliette Binoche. She lets rip in a histrionic way that is wonderful to watch. There is a mismatched romance between Binoche's son (who presents as a girl) and Ma Loute, the dorky son of the fishing family. The fat detective is literally puffed up, leading to a few scenes of magical realism, and most of the characters have the habit of unexpectedly falling over. I must say I couldn't make head or tail of things, but I found myself amused, sometimes a little shocked, but never bored by this odd-ball French black comedy.     
3 - recommended!

Latest recommended DVD releases
20th Century Women
Lovely ensemble cast family story with the fabulous Annette Bening
American Made
Tom cruise in surprisingly good true story of double dealing CIA agent 
War for the Planet of the Apes
Exceptionally well done blockbuster
The Big Sick
Interracial romance in a strongly scripted true story of a Pakistani comedian
Wind River
Taut thriler about cop on trail of disappearance of native American women from the reservation 
Cat lovers in Istanbul - cute and insightful
Their Finest
Fabulous Bill Nighy in a brilliant Brit comedy/drma aset in the Dunkirk days

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