Tuesday, October 13, 2009

In celebration of cinema

Chacun son cinéma is a collection of short films that were commissioned to celebrate the 60th anniversary of the Cannes film festival. In most short film anthologies, one usually gets a mixed bag of results. But in the case of Chacun son cinéma, the three minute length ensures that most shorts offer something worthwhile. Only one segment by Amos Gitai comes to mind as being quite awful, while most are enjoyable and some quite brilliant.

However, the most fun I got was in guessing the director of each short. I had not looked at the full list of directors before hand so it was an enjoyable game, provided the director's name was not displayed before the short began (which I think happened only once). Here was the criteria by which I could identify most of the shorts:

  • director's style (example: Tsai Ming-Liang, Hou Hsiao-hsien, Wong Kar Wai)
  • director's presence (these were giveaways)
  • setting (such as the one by Aki Kaurismäki)
  • location (Walter Selles)
  • the presence of an actor used by a director (Manoel de Oliveira)

  • Still, there were some that I wouldn't have guessed such as the Gus Van Sant or Jane Campion pieces. But Jane Campion's short makes sense considering she was the only female director in the anthology. Also, there was a director (Bille August) I was not aware of.

    Overall, there are some which convey the pleasure and magic of the cinematic experience. And the final segment which shows that there is nothing good ever playing in a multiplex is quite funny.

    note: my DVD didn't have the segments from David Lynch and the Coen brothers.

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