Tuesday, May 20, 2014

TwoOhSix at SIFF 2014: Week One

TwoOhSix at SIFF recaps all the movies I was able to see during each week of this year's festival. This "Week One" edition includes movies seen between May 15th and May 18th as well as a feature on the fantastic Opening Night Gala. You will not find any full reviews in these posts as many of the movies are waiting on domestic release dates. I will try to get all those reviews posted as soon as I am able.

André Benjamin in Jimi: All is by My Side
  Check out my full recap of SIFF's 2014 Opening Night Gala HERE.

Japanese Director Sabu's Miss Zombie
Miss Zombie is a very unique take on the genre that is both fresh and entertaining. Director Hiroyuki Tanaka, who works under the pseudonym Sabu, utilizes a very deliberate pace that slowly builds to a shocking crescendo. I did find myself wandering a bit during some of the slower moments, but overall I felt like this was a zombie flick worth checking out.

Jesse Eisenberg and Mia Wasikowska in The Double
Jesse Eisenberg stars in The Double which is a brilliantly stylized Orwellian journey through duality. There is so much going on in this movie it almost begs to be watched again so you can see what you might have missed the first time around. The story, directed by Richard Ayoade, is a smart, funny, and tragic tale is held together perfectly by Eisenberg's ability to portray identically contrasting characters.

Clark Gregg and Saxon Sharbino in Trust Me
Clark Gregg writes, directs, and stars in Trust Me, a contemporary film noir that looks straight into the heart of what the world of a Hollywood agent might look like from the inside out. The strongest part of this film is the cast which features Sam Rockwell, William H Macy, Allison Janney, Amanda Peet, and Felicity Huffman along with a breakout performance by Saxon Sharbino.

Witching and Bitching
Midnight SIFF movies are entertaining, if nothing else. Witching and Bitching, directed by Spanish cult-filmmaker Alex de la Iglesia, is certainly no exception and the first ten minutes should go down as one of the best opening sequences of the entire festival. Imagine costumed street performers like Spongebob and Minnie Mouse getting gunned down during a robbery...and I haven't even mentioned all the witches!

Actress Hayley Atwell on the SIFF Red Carpet!
Overall, this was a great way to start this year's festival and, based on these five films, I have no reason not to believe that SIFF's 40th festival will be their best one yet. Stay tuned for more recaps, reviews, and red carpet coverage coming soon!


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