We Are One Retrospective – Offerings from Venice & Marrakech

Catching up on the We Are One Global Film Festival again, with two mini-reviews of movies from the Venice Film Festival and a talk from the Marrakech International Film Festival.

Electric Swan (2019, France/Greece/Argentina, 40 min) – Venice Film Festival

Focuses on the doorman of a Buenos Aires apartment building and his interactions with the inhabitants. The ageing owner of the building wants him to kill her dog because she can’t bear the thought of it outliving her; the yuppie ballerina on the top floor is worried that the building shakes at night; the young daughter of another family is concerned that they keep moving down floors as her family’s fortunes decrease; and the doorman lives in a basement which is flooding from an unknown source. Low key, entertaining, lightly comedic, increasing touches of magic realism as it develops. Another favourite.

Mary is Happy, Mary is Happy (2013, Thailand, 127 min) – Venice Film Festival

A comedy-drama from Thailand built around a series of 410 consecutive tweets from a real Twitter account, situated around Mary’s final year of high school and the construction of a yearbook. The writer/director makes creative use of the tweets, sometimes interpreting them over-literally or going off at weird tangents which disrupt reality in engaging ways. This adds to the portrayal of Mary’s life as peppered with unexpected events and illogical societal constraints – sometimes even she can’t make any sense of her own tweets. None of this takes away from the sense of Mary as a real teenager trying to deal with her feelings and what life sends her way. Low key but never boring and quite rewarding.

In conversation with Guillermo del Toro (2018, Morocco, 81 min) – Marrakech International Film Festival

A standout interview session. Guillermo del Toro is an extremely engaging speaker and interviewer Kim Morgan has a great rapport with him. If you’ve enjoyed any of his work, this is 80 min well spent.

Venice Film Festival – Watched But Not Reviewed

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