The weekend’s very good to great movies in review:
Volver. Penelope Cruz has her own Scoville scale to measure hotness and strength and her beauty is off the charts. Her command of performance as Raimunda is so pleasurable and the end credits art so enchanting one could not be without the other and the whole could not exist without either. Five blue ribbons for this Almodovar production, with one great restaurant location, carvature of a tree, and All the Pretty Blouses.
Garden State: Wallpaper-shirt figure and ground connection is bizarre! Levity in starry-eyed pill popping parties, the gravity of a grave-pilfering grave-digger, and revelations of tragedy at home. Furry hamsters, fuzzy cats, and a leg-humping dog; a mansion, dumps and an ark. Plus, treating one’s own mental illness. The agony and the ecstasy! What’s not to like?
Gervaise: If you want a downer, pop this into the DVD and watch. Moments of humor, makes English period pieces look like plasticine. Maria Schell has her hands full and is fully alive. Would love to see this set in our times. Talk about dark! Talk about film noir! Talk about social realism. Put the René in Clément for a blast of stormy weather. Raw, rare, tender and real, but they are just acting, nothing like this ever happened in the history of all mankind. Five fish bladders, some sweets and ten grosgrain ribbons. Plus, two good paddles to go on.