Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Wading into the SIFF, needing to wash off that Hollywood oiliness

The Seattle Int'l Film Festival (SIFF) is underway, and this is the year I've promised myself some steady (albeit very selective) viewing.  I started off last night with a skiing/mountain climbing/triumph of the spirit/blah blah blah documentary - "Mount St. Elias".  It was imposingly beautiful, shot in lavish overstatement, chock full of gratuitous Red Bull products placement, and a total piece of self-absorbed crap.  My rating - a very harsh C-minus.  The storyline is all about trying to ski an impossibly tough 18,000 vertical feet from the summit all the way to sea level.  Yawn.  The alpinists were impossible to warm up to.  But the mere fact that I was surrounded by a very appreciate film festival crowd totally eager and wanting to chat it up - whatever the subject - made it all worthwhile.

On the other hand, big budget bunk didn't exactly caress my movie-going rump a few weeks back.  Namely, "Iron Man 2" was a waste of time and as unoriginal as another GOP "Contract With America".  Unfortunately, I think this movie was bland and undeserving enough to actually start taking the sheen off Robert Downey Jr.  Or to do so once again.  The good news is that, of course, everyone looks good and there are light moments.  Still, what a sad follow-up to the utterly lovable original.  My rating - a flat C.  I'll need to look elsewhere for the hotness this summer, obviously.  Hence, more SIFF to come.

Hope your own Festival line-up also gives you plenty of selections to pick through today.  Rock on.

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