Every week, Ecran Large makes its market in cinemas, and selects a few must-see releases and films (for good or bad reasons). With Dwayne Johnson in a very (very) tight outfit, a nice donkey, strangers in Transylvania, the return of Michael Ocelota love story that has no time and rich stories.
What is it about : The journey of a donkey through the world and through his eyes.
Why we recommend it: The Polish guy Jerzy Skolimowski made its return to the cinema with a sort of remake of the Random balthazar by Robert Bresson at the last Cannes Film Festival from where he left with a nice Jury Prize, and of course you can’t miss it. In a mixture of extremely brutal realism and a spellbinding dose of surrealism plunging the film into an almost horrific atmosphere, EO thus explores human cruelty (and particularly that of men) through the eyes of animals.
The result is a completely bonkers sensory experience, not always compelling (especially when it dwells a little too much on vain humans), but totally unique. Carried by music juggling between classical and metal, EO then delivers a disturbing pamphlet against animal violence, and paints a portrait of the alarmist world with a singular vision, where the human species is indeed the most dangerous in the world.
The Widescreen note: 3.5/5
What is it about : In a small town in Transylvania, the arrival of foreign workers provokes a wave of xenophobia.
Why we recommend it: Because if you are one of those who imagine that Romanian cinema is a compendium of greyish clichés, boredom and defeated looks, that’s enough to make you measure the extent of your error. Already a recipient of the Palme d’Or, the director Christian Mungiu venture with NMR simultaneously in the field of drama, social thriller, while dipping a toe on the side of storytelling and horror.
Using a staging that is both feverish and tense, he captures all the neuroses, fears and vicissitudes that tear apart a small community where everyone tries year after year to survive, and where the emergence of a desperate individualism in comes to threaten the survival of all. Human and touching, even in its most terrible twists, RMN advances inexorably to a chilling and poetic conclusion, which confronts its hero with the horror that lurks in the hearts of men.
The Widescreen note: 4.5/5
Our criticism of NMR.
The Pharaoh, the Savage and the Princess
What is it about : Of three tales, one with one pharaoh, the other with a savage and the last with a princess.
Why we recommend it: Because Michel Ocelot’s return to theaters always has something special about it. With this new film, the French filmmaker returns to his preferred form of narration, that is to say the collection of tales (three in this case), and reconnects with the recurring figure of the narratorwhich this time takes on the features of a woman on a construction site.
Whether The Pharaoh, the Savage and the Princess is not the most innovative or interesting work by Michel Ocelot, who preferred something lighter after Dilili in Paris, the film remains a beautiful compendium of the filmmaker’s art : two-dimensional scenography inspired by the frescoes of ancient Egypt, Chinese shadows and a final segment with bright colors and sumptuous decorations.
The Widescreen note: 3/5
What is it about : The obviously cute, funny and complicated love story between two eternally single people.
Why we recommend it: A little like Love, Simon with the teen movie, Bros reappropriates the codes of romantic comedy, but with two men. And so ? And so it doesn’t change anything if you’re looking for a funny, tender and mischievous romantic comedy. But it changes everything if you see how much pop culture counts in the collective imagination, and how representation has a significant value.
The idea is simple (but valuable), and Bros develops it using all the good tricks of the genre. The first: the two characters, embodied by the excellent Billy Eichner and Luke MacFarlane, are a perfect mix of neuroses, self-mockery and tenderness. The second: the scenario may be square, it is full of scenes, lines and ideas far smarter and funnier than average of the genre (yes, we think of crap Ticket to Paradiserandomly).
Icing on the cake: this is the perfect opportunity to (re)discover the talent of Billy Eichner, here actor and co-screenwriter.
The Widescreen note: 3.5/5 (or even 4/5, because it’s very good)
LEAST RECOMMENDED OUTINGS
What is it about : Dwayne Johnson is trying to be an anti-hero for DC.
Why we do not recommend it: To save you two hours of your time. As one might expect, black adam follows the same cheesy, washed-out pattern as the blockbusters of the genre with a Dwayne Johnson juggling between two facial expressions, characters with no characterization (or real importance), cameos burned during promotion, a new big bad bad and anecdotal, a new fantasy land, a new magic pebble and a new post-credits scene (which is the most important thing to remember).
The Widescreen note: 2/5
THE NEW TOY
What is it about : James Huth, Jamel Debbouze and Daniel Auteuil try to make a remake of Pierre Richard
Why we do not recommend it: Because it’s the typical example of the remake failing to understand its source material to the point of contradicting the very substance of the source material. For the rest, controlled photography and large means fail to compensate for a lazy modernization, a contemptuous aplomb for the public and a certain embarrassing political servility. When the original work seems more contemporary and relevant 45 years after its “update”, we can speak of failure. Not to mention the fact that it’s barely funny.
The Widescreen note: 1.5/5
THE COOL EXIT
Mambo number 5
What is it about : Vicky, torn between two men, with her possessive DJ boyfriend on one side, and her mafia friend on the other.
Why you have to (re)watch it: Because you only have to think back to the first two minutes of the film to remind yourself that Millennium Mambo is a little sensory killer. The neon lights, the slow motion, the music of Yoshihiro Hanno and Giong Lim, Shu Qi walking from behind and his voice-over… it’s a magic and unforgettable bubble, which perfectly encapsulates the cinema of Hou Hsiao-hsien.
The City of Sorrows, The Puppet Master, Shanghai Flowers, Three Times, The Assassin… the Taiwanese director is unmissable, and the re-release of Millennium Mambo at the cinema is the ideal opportunity to (re)discover his cinema. By filming urban nights, by following his favorite actress Shu Qi (he will find her twice afterwards), and by marrying the sentimental wanderings of his floating heroine, he signs one of his most beautiful films. And one of the best gateways to his universe.
The Widescreen note: 3.5/5
We would like to say thanks to the author of this write-up for this outstanding content
Cinema releases of October 19: Black Adam, Bros, EO…