Screencap from deeply-affecting French immigration drama ‘Welcome’
by Sam Juliano
Film buffs are celebrating this week, as the newly-restored German classic Metropolis has officially opened at the Film Forum. Fritz Lang’s masterpiece is scheduled to run at the West Houston St. theatre for at least the next two weeks, and I hope to be on board myself over the next few days, as does WitD colleague and impassioned Lang fan Bob Clark. The Tony Award nominations have been announced, and as a result I to plan intensity my focus on the Broadway scene in the coming weeks, using the TDF listings for some potential theatrical outings. At Wonders in the Dark the 2000’s poll continues to some excellent discourse among the site’s gifted commentators. Plans are presently being negotiated for follow-up genre pollings that will commence after Allan’s present countdown and tabulation are completed. First up is the ‘horror poll,’ which will be chaired by our own Jamie Uhler with assistance from Troy and Kevin Olson. Ironically enough, these three are the most fatatical and knowledgable horror afficianados in the blogosphere. That ‘countdown’ may be 50 or 100, depending on how the three want to handle it. After that Bob Clark will be examining the greatest science-fiction films of all-time, and has a very unique presentation planned. That sci-fi poll will probably launch sometime in late October, depending on the duration of the horror poll. The ‘musicals’ poll will be handled by Yours Truly, while we are still searching for someone to manage the ’50 Greatest Westerns’, the ’50 Greatest War Films’ and ’50 Greatest Animated Films.’ Something tells me that a chap named ‘Donophon’ might be the man for the Western poll.
This week on the cultural front I attended two magificent theatrical productions that frankly I will remember for the rest of my life. The revival of Rogers and Hammerstein’s glorious SOUTH PACIFIC, which won a Tony Award for Best Musical Revival in 2008, is a superlatively staged and performed musical gem that would melt even the most jaded theatre goer, and is further evidence of why this lovely work has been so adored since its initial appearance in the 50’s. I attended the Wednesday evening, May 5th performance at Lincoln Center’s Vivien Beaumont Theatre with Lucille and Broadway Bob, and what an ‘enchanted evening it was’ (full review posted above the ‘Diary’ here).
On the following night I traveled alone through some hellish downtown Manhattan traffic to BAM’s (Brooklyn Academy of Music) Harvey Theatre to attend a searing drama by August Strindberg, titled THE CREDITORS, which is one of it’s author’s greatest works. The simple but sublime staging set in a summer hotel room by the sea, and the extraordinary performances made this one of the most riveting 90 minutes I’ve ever spent in a theatre. Strindberg himself, referred to this naturalistic tragicomedy as his ‘most mature work.’ (review planned for Tuesday)
Apart from this, I managed only two films in theatres, as the weekend rightly focused on the combined communion/confirmation party for my sons Jeremy and Sammy, and the actual church mass for the First Holy Communion. (picture below) I saw:
Welcome **** 1/2 (Saturday evening; 9:30 P.M.) Lincoln Plaza Cinemas
Iron Man 2 ** 1/2 (Sunday afternoon) Edgewater Multiplex
WELCOME is a deeply affecting immigration drama about a young 17 year-old Kurdish refugee looking to reunite with his girlfriend in Calais, and the help he attracts from a sympathetic Frenchman who is moved by his dreams. The episodic film boasts some strong acting from Vincent Lindon and Firat Ayverdi and a perceptive script that delineates the moral issues and dilemmas that arise in works that deal with displacement.
IRON MAN 2 goes nowhere we haven’t been, even if it does provide the goods in the pyrotechnic department. It’s alternately entertaining and overbearing, but the kids liked it. Downey is a perfect fit for this role though.
Lucille received some beautiful Mother’s Day flowers from that lovely woman blogger, who just happens to be our site’s regular staff interviewer. There is no kinder person in the world.
BREAKING NEWS FROM CHINA!!! Bliss for the Olsons!!
A picture tells a thousand words! Say hello to Troy and Tricia Olson here: http://olsonfamilymatters.blogspot.com/2010/05/welcome-to-our-family-madelyn-yihong.html
Around the blogosphere we have some great things: (more…)
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