Enter The Void – A Review

29 09 2010
Gaspar Noe, Enter The Void

It's all gone a bit Pete Tong... 'Enter The Void'

What happens to us after we die?: perhaps the oldest and most troublesome question known to mankind. A question, nevertheless, which Argentinian-French director Gaspar Noé (Irréversible, Seul Contre Tous) sets out to tackle with characteristic gusto in his intense new film Enter The Void.

Never one to shy away either from controversy or from mind-bending visuals, Noé casts his film as an unapologetic ‘trip’ movie, a staggering, high-concept piece that takes its cue from The Tibetan Book of the Dead as it recounts the premature death and ghostly wanderings of a young American in Tokyo.

Read the rest of this entry »


I’m Still Here – A Review

20 09 2010


Joachin Phoenix

JP, yesterday

A huge number of column inches has already been devoted to the question of whether Casey Affleck’s new film about the physical and mental disintegration of his brother-in-law and friend Joachin Phoenix, is a straightfoward documentary (as it says on the tin) or something far more contrived and mischievous.

Well, let me say straight away that I’m Still Here is very obviously not an ‘honest’, fly-on-the-wall record of events. Certain key scenes have quite evidently been scripted in advance, and Phoenix’s shambling, paranoid performance is simply too funny to be completely unplanned. To call it a spoof or a mockumentary is perhaps going a little too far though. Rather, it’s a record of a year-long tragi-comic performance, a living piece of installation art almost, for which Phoenix grew a big bushy beard, smoked a lot of dope and appeared in various stages of coherence in the US media. How far this performance spilled over into his off-camera life is anyone’s guess, but for much of the film the actor certainly seems to be pretty immersed in deep character, living and breathing the Method like some latter-day, hoodie-wearing Brando.

Read the rest of this entry »