Saturday, June 02, 2007

SIFF 2007, day 7 (5/31)

I've made it to the end of week 1 of the film festival and this is a record year. We have already been out to 10 full length feature films and there were only 2 films that I wouldn't recommend. One of those I cannot blog about and the other was merely a very average documentary. While Monter Camp wasn't terrible it was very mediocre.

But there are already two stand out films and both are documentaries: King of Kong and The Devil Came on Horseback.

Also of note is that I have lost 1.4 kg/ 3 lbs in one week since the festival started. At work, we have had the fitness challenge going since the beginning of the year with Hieu tracking our progress. I'm not allowed to play, since according to Hieu, I am already at my ideal BMI (which I told him is meaningless for many reasons, but he wants to run the contest based on BMI, so whatever) so I'm stepping on the lab scale once a month with everyone else as a "control". My weight has stayed firmly at 59 kg (metric is more scientific, I hear), but it only took a week of daily movie-going for it to change for the first time this year. Who knew that film festivals could be a valid weight-loss plan? I've suspected weight-loss as a result of too much movie going in years past, but had no data to prove it.

Additionally, I'm keeping track of how much time I spend in line. The most shocking bit of data is that I've spent nearly 5 hours standing in line in the last week. That is probably right, since I've had to wait approximately 30 min in line for each screening. Pass holders aren't even getting in much faster this year as they are needing to get to the venue early too, since even the pass holder lines are long this year. Seems to be a big year for SIFF.

I'm sure I'll add a few more hours to the line total this weekend.

A Friend of Mine- Germany, Comedy

The more I think about this understated, German comedy, the more I dig it. Karl (Daniel Brühl) is a successful, award winning, mathematician. The only problem is, work is his whole life. After being recognized for his mathematic innovation with an award, he goes home. Karl waits for his train, alone and silent with his award in hand. At work, Karl is assigned a project that involves taking a minimum wage driving job. There he meets Hans (Jürgen Vogel) who is Karl's opposite. Hans loves life, no matter what he is doing. He enjoys driving the cars, often new sports cars, very fast and quickly befriends the quiet Karl. For the time that Karl is posing as a driver, Hans gets him in to all sorts of mischief.

A Friend of Mine is very somber for a comedythe I attributed to it being German, but I thought it also added to the quirky charm. I was very charmed by this comedy. I adored Hans. He was so goofy and fun and I seem to always enjoy Daniel Brüel's roles (good thing, since he has several films in this year's festival) so it shouldn't be a surprise that I enjoyed this movie. And I wasn't the only one. We overheard plenty of gushing by fellow festival attendees. While A Friend of MIne is a very conventional, feel-good comic movie, it does have some nice subtext on friendship.

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