Norwich Film Festival 2012: Day Two
Time: how we use it and play with it… what we choose to do with it. That’s what I was thinking about sitting there in the dark as Norwich Film Festival flickered before me.
REMEMBERING FORMBY was poetry in motion. This was an animation about a man obsessed by safety, which used the language of road signs to illustrate his inner world. One image melted into another with witty felicity. Sue Elliott’s film should go far.
THE FUTURE (directed by Venetia Taylor) offered a different game of time: in which a couple on the verge of marriage met their older selves and heard the future. The disappointments they were heading for were perhaps rather predictable: a twist or two would have been nice, but the plot had a clean coherence which made a satisfying whole.
Perhaps my favourite film of the evening was “Best Film” award winner SUNNY BOY (directed by Jane Gull) about a boy suffering from a rare skin condition which kept him from the sunlight and the choices he wanted to make. The pain of his skin really prickled off the screen. This was lovingly acted by all concerned and genuinely poignant.
Choice was also the key in THE SHIFT (Ben Hillyar), an ambitious three part film, in which a desperate boy becomes a hired killer. The first part was interestingly enigmatic, but we could have done without the other two, which frankly descended by degress into silliness. The same theme bled into THE MAN WHO ALMOST CYCLED THE WORLD – a sad piece in which the satire was uncomfortably at odds with the engaging vulnerability of the characer portrayed.
Holding back the moment can be just as interesting as seizing it, and Spanish animation TANTALO was a surprisingly positive version of the Tantalus myth, a thread which was also to be found in LOVE AFTER SUNRISE – about a man unable to live with passion and zest once he’s really got what he wants.
It’s interesting how isolated many the characters portrayed were, and how obsessed. We’ve been writing dramas featuring characters with an ideé fixe since the classical era, maybe it’s time to come up with something different. And possibly we could try a bit more joy?
- NFF2012: Interview with Gergely Wootsch by Rosy Hunt (Editor-in-Chief)
- NFF2012: Interview with Hadi Ghandour by Rosy Hunt (Editor-in-Chief)
- Norwich Film Festival 2012: Day One by Mike Boyd (Editor-at-large)