Where do you start with mother!? Darren Aronofsky’s latest is as much a mystery as a film, and its advertising campaign has aimed to create confusion rather than clarity. The director wants you to go in with as little information as possible and discover this twisted journey for yourself.
A film where Casey Affleck spends 90% of the running time dressed like a last-minute Halloween costume and in which a camera sits and focuses on Rooney Mara for nine minutes as she devours a pie could have gone, well, any number of ways to be honest but most of them would be bad. However, if you can stomach the long lingering shots and the Terrence Malick feel to this dreamy reflection on grief, then there is something here. I’m not quite sure what, but it’s there.
If you were judging solely by the marketing, then you’d be forgiving for believing that It Comes At Night was a pretty straight forward horror film. The type with plenty of jump scares for groups of teenagers to scream at in delight. Sadly, for them, we can only imagine a few of those groups have gone home unhappy.
Romeo and Juliet but instead of Montagues and Capulets we’ve got emos and Christians. Instead of fair Verona, we have a clique filled school in Australia. Oh, and it’s a musical. That’s the elevator pitch for Emo The Musical, adapted by writer and director Neil Triffett from his short of the same name, and the end results are even more ridiculous than it sounds.
Freak Show takes a well-worn plot and decides to give it a bit of a twisting. Billy Bloom (Alex Lawther) is forced to leave the big city and his beloved Muv (his flamboyant mother played by Bette Midler) behind when he moves in with his dad who he hasn’t seen for seven years. Now living in the Red States, he suddenly finds that being gay with a penchant for drag isn’t the best way to fit in and in fact attracts violence. Billy ain’t no wilting flower, however, and he strikes back by letting his freak flag fly and running for homecoming queen.
The Edinburgh Film Festival has kicked off and with it the chance to catch a whole bunch of films you wouldn’t have seen otherwise. First up was Story Of A Girl, the debut feature from Kyra Sedgewick which will air on Lifetime after its festival run. With a cast which includes Sedgewick’s husband, Kevin Bacon, it follows Deanna (Ryann Shane) who three years after a sex tape of her and her big brother’s best friend was leaked on the internet, is still dealing with the consequences.
Childhood neglect and abuse are unlikely to be the topic of the next Disney animated smash. Even as Inside Out dives into the child psyche, they tend to avoid such unfriendly children’s fare. My Life As A Courgette has no such qualms. In the opening scenes, we are introduced to Icare (who prefers to be known as Courgette) leaving his alcoholic mother behind to live in an orphanage. There he and his new gang of friends, all of whom come from equally (if not worse) traumatic backgrounds, have to try and find a place in the world without the reassurance of family. It’s all presented in a delightful stop-motion style and Christ, it could have been a disaster.
If you took the hipster mumblecore of Noah Baumbach strapped it into a sports car and drove it at a 100 miles-per-hour into Godzilla, then the resultant debris would look a bit like Colossal. I mean it wouldn’t, Godzilla is massive so he probably wouldn’t even notice, but you can at least pretend to play along.