I write stuff about films for the BFI, Little White Lies, Sight & Sound, and other places.
Joy is a film about a mop. It's about as exciting as you'd expect a film about a mop to be, which is to say NOT AT ALL.
Not a review obviously but a few quick thoughts that I couldn't squash into a pithy tweet:
I'm no fan of David O. Russell (The Fighter: forgettable; Silver Linings Playbook: embarrassing but made watchable by Cooper and Lawrence; American Hustle: unbearable). In general, I find his camerawork chaotic and rhythmless, his plotting…
Now we're cooking with gas.
Quick thoughts: I hate to bandy about the 'M' word but this really does feel like the first masterpiece I've seen this year. It really is like nothing else I've ever seen; the cinema verite of the scenes in the white van (oh how I loved the subversion of making a succubus' mode of transportation so decidedly unsexy - and the car most associated with dodgy men) is of such stark contrast with the creepy…
Ryan, babe. What a mess.
It's beautifully lensed (duh, Benoit Debie shot it) but it's crushingly blank and crucially, without stakes.
I'd argue that a film without a plot can succeed if the characters are interesting and fully-realised. Similarly, it doesn't always matter if characters are empty ciphers if the story is compelling. Lost River lacks a cogent narrative AND actual characters. It is barely a movie. It is a vapid fucking ghost of an idea of some shots in…