Monday, June 04, 2007

SIFF week one

I saw my first handlful of SIFF movies last week, most of which were great!
Here's my quick review of them:

Outsourced: 5/5
A great movie by local writer/director John Jeffcoat. A Seattle-based online marketing execute finds out his division (and his job) have been outsourced to India, and he has to go train his replacement. The usual culure shocks and misunderstandings occur as West meets East, but the film is saved from being too sappy or cliched by the excellent cast, especially the lead Josh Hamilton. The film is funny, warm and uplifting without being saccharine.
Check out the movie's blog here.

Black Sheep: 3/5
A film from New Zealand that tells the terrible tale of what might happen if bio-engineering goes too far. This is a comedy/horror movie in the vein of Shawn of the Dead, with lots of over-the-top gore, gross humour, and some nice send-ups of the green/hippie movement. At time it drags a bit, though, and some of the fart jokes wore a bit thin.

Cashback: 5/5
A wonderfully quirky film about time, relationships and the beauty of the female form, seen through the eyes of a guy who develops insomnia after a painful break-up, and decided to work the night shift at Sainsbury's. He imagines he can slow and even stop time, and uses this power to capture moments of beauty (as well as have some fun with his boss). Filled with hilarious vignettes involving his zany co-workers and egotistical boss, as well as some very clever visual tricks. The movie makes you realize the value of every instant and the beauty that surrounds us, if we only take the time to notice it.

Death at a Funeral: 3/5
A British movie by director Frank Oz. This is a solidly-made comedy filled with dark humour (you need to be able to laugh at the misfortune and discomfort of others to enjoy this movie). Solid performances from the entire cast, and some hilarious scenes made me almost give this a 4/5, but the over-abundance of toilet-humour and people-on-acid-trips-are-funny scenes made me lower this to a 3.

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