Esteemed Polish Director Agnieszka Holland (I like her past films) debuted her latest film Spoor, an adaptation of the book by Olga Tokarczuk. A crime story with touches of black comedy, the three time Oscar Nominee attended the Belinale Press Conferece to discuss the film. The title of the 2009 book is Drive Your over the Bones of the Dead. After reading the book Ms. Holland thought it would be easy to adapt as a feature, after 17 script drafts and doctoring the film emerged set in a remote part of Poland once claimed by Hungary and Germany, a national no man’s land of sorts. Hunting, animal rights, environment, ecology, and social subjugation are all themes played out. Was this film political in text? According to the creative team “no” but given the modern political environment In Poland and the world the film has taken a political angle. The film is not propaganda but art. People are either fighting for something or against something.
The Spook Press conference began too political. I would have liked to learn more about the film than the political situation in Poland and the mechanisms of the government. I will get more feedback on the film.
The effects of a partitioned India and Pakistan are themes covered in the film The Last Viceroy from director Grunider Chadha starring Gillian Anderson and Hugh Bonneville. The helmer took a multi-point of view to one of the great geo-political events of the 20th century by giving a viewpoint to the ordinary people as well as the Viceroy Mountbatten and the politics of an Empire in its sunset. Did the Director play it too safe? Has this type of costume drama been seen many times?
The press opinions of the film were mixed. I think it is a film worth viewing on Netflix.
The documentary film Strong Island is hard hitting timely topic in the age of Black Lives Matter. Director Yance Ford chronicles the murder of his older brother, shot by a garage worker, and the effects it had on his family. A mother riddled with doubt, a sister who went in denial, and the physical downfall of his father. It is a film that begs questions, but it cannot answer all.
See my upcoming interview with Mr. Ford.
Arri Feature coming soon. I visited the Arri Lounge during the Berlinale to learn about the new camera devices. For all of my filmmaker readers, stay tuned.