What is so mystic about this river?

Clint Eastwood directs

Now why didn’t I know about this film? It’s got Sean Penn, It’s got Tim Robbins, Kevin Bacon, Lawrence Fishburne and it’s directed by Clint Eastwood. It’s won awards and all. And I had not heard about it until a couple of days ago. And it’s been out there sine 2003. I blame the marketing machine. I hope you don’t have to. It’ grim, it’s Clint Eastwood. It’s not the happiest film I’ve seen and it definitely didn’t make me feel very good. But I did like it. Very cold, very dark, very emotional. Clint knows how it’s done. And I can’t believe he can do so many things so well. He just can’t leave anything to anyone, he’s even doing the music himself. And not just in this film. Check out Changeling and Gran Torino too. Mystic river is just another proof actor turned director can get it right more than once. Now that doesn’t sound right does it. I guess What I’m trying to say is, Clint is great.

Harvey Milk

Who’s he then?

It was one of those occasions of going to see a movie you absolutely have no clue about. I’d never heard about Harvey Milk. I saw the poster of Milk. I read somewhere it’s good. It’s directed by Gus Van Sant and starring Sean Penn so I didn’t need to know more and I prefer not to know too much about a film before seeing it.

Harvey Milk

Harvey Milk

Although I must admit I’m not a big fan of Gus Van Sant really…

Milk, the story of Harvey Milk was a surprise to me though. Brilliantly acted. And captures the era perfectly. Sean Penn is amazing, as is the rest of the cast. The structure of the film works nicely, even if it does keep everything nicely predictable throughout the film. But I suppose that isn’t really an issue with a story based on real events and fairly famous public figure – even if I’ve never heard of him. Then again there are many completely fictitious films that aren’t based on any facts that follow a similar structure.  And then there are films that claim to be based on a true story and are not- I need to watch Fargo again.

Sean Penn has proved himself to be a very versatile actor who can cope with any kind of role and create very touching characters. The movie is slightly long though and occasionally appears to repeat itself a lot. And it’s certainly not your average Saturday night action packed blockbuster entertainment package.

Daughter of Sam

When you are in an emotionally sensitive state, it’s wonderful when you happen to make the right choice of film to watch. While on any other day I Am Sam might have been just a very good film, I was lucky to pick the day that left me crying past the end credits. Or maybe it really is just this film. I Am Sam

Sean Penn, Dakota Fanning and Michelle Pfeiffer star in this Oscar nominated film. I haven’t watched Becoming Sam, a documentary about the film yet, but I think that’s now on my list of films to watch. The film is very sweet and does not get too dipressing at any point and there’s a fair bit of comedy in it as well. Michelle Pfeiffer does an ok job acting, though lags definitely behind Sean and Dakota. Dakota is simply amazing and definitely reflects her character’s name. I’m sure the kind of role Sean Penn had to act in this film is among the hardest kind of roles to act believably, and he does it very well indeed. There’s also What’s Eating Gilbert Grape where Leonardo Di Caprio had similarly difficult role to play – that one also turned out to be a very beautiful film.

I guess I can mention the soundtrack of the film is great, if you like The Beatles songs. Apparently Penn could not afford rights to the real thing, so they’re all covers, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing, I think I like the contemporary feel of it. The film is beautiful, heartbreaking at times, but a feel-good movie on the whole. It also touches on issues that are important in any family, not just the exceptional kind that Sam and Lucy have in this film.