PFF: Monday Night Recap
Just as the Philadelphia Film Festival started to get into full swing, I get sick. An unfair consequence that leaves me thrusting a clenched fist into the air as I curse the gods for their cruel sense of humor. As a result of my sore throat, runny nose and sneezing, I sadly decided to shorten my Monday night film watching. I only managed to catch one film for the evening called Simon Killer (I'll have to catch Shanghai at another time). Having seen director Antonio Campos' first feature After School, starring the talented up-and-comer Ezra Miller (We Need to Talk About Kevin and The Perks of Being a Wallflower), I wanted to know if his second effort could match the disturbing and creepy vein of its predecessor. Simon Killer watches its title character rummage through France manipulating people and feeding off of strangers like a parasite. Simon is clearly a broke and lonely sociopath who shacks up with a kind-hearted prostitute, only to get as much from her as he can before he moves on to the next victim of his mental illness. But be warned about the slightly inaccurate title, as Simon's actions rarely translate to onscreen violence. Instead, we're left watching his character exist in a dark and disturbing place as he bottoms out. I found Simon Killer to be a tantalizing character study, however, it moves at a crawling pace and never holds back on its over-the-top sex scenes. I expect Simon Killer to appeal more to the European masses than moviegoers in the United States. And unfortunately for its leading star Brady Corbet who does a stellar job in the film, I'm not sure that Simon Killer will do for his career what After School did for Ezra Miller's.
A Look At Today:
While I still feel under the weather as I write this, I'm deciding to take it easy today as well. Yet, there's a BIG title playing today (and only today) that I can't miss. Therefore, I'll still find myself at the festival today catching the Wachowski's Cloud Atlas. The epic sci-fi drama comes from the directors of The Matrix trilogy and I'm curious to see what their latest effort has to offer. Check out the trailer for Cloud Atlas below and remember to stay tuned for the latest in festival news and updates.