He Who Fights Monsters

Hey, look! Another Friday, another raft of major motion pictures. And also some less than major ones. Are you sitting comfortably? Then let’s begin.

“The Forgiveness of Blood”: Joshua Marston, director of the excellent “Maria Full of Grace”, shifts his attention from Central American heroin smuggling to Albanian blood feuds. Susan likes it, but favors Jennifer Baichwal’s take on the subject in “Payback”.

Gerhard Richter Painting“: Corinna Belz’ documentary of the singular German artist is at its best when it delivers exactly what it says on the tin, and just watches the man at work. Everything else feels like a distraction.

The Guantanamo Trap“: Thomas Selim Wallner’s documentary looks at America’s extra-legal prison facility, and notes that it has a way of tainting the lives of everyone who comes in contact with it. Kinda like the house in “The Grudge”, oddly enough.

“Love in the Buff”: Pang Ho-Cheung’s sequel to “Love in a Puff” (geddit?) finds nicotine-addicted heroes Miriam Yeung and Shawn Yue carrying on their awkward courtship even after they’re (separately) transferred from Hong Kong to Beijing. Glenn is into it.

“Mirror Mirror”: The first of this year’s many Snow White projects is unlikely to be the best, according to … umm … everyone. I kinda had a feeling, to be honest.

“Servitude”: I really liked the vicious, dry comedy of Warren P. Sonada’s early films, “Ham & Cheese” and “Cooper’s Camera”. Andrew reports that this one, which seems to be a tribute to the “Waiting” films, is not quite on their level — though it does have Dave Foley.

“Sleeping Sickness”: ¬†Ulrich Kohler’s tale of cultural divides among first-world doctors in Cameroon won the Silver Bear at Berlin, though Rad doesn’t think it amounts to much. I still wanna see it, though.

Wrath of the Titans“: More monsters! Different ladies! Sam Worthington with hair! Jonathan Liebesman’s mythological colossus gives us pretty much exactly what we want, except for a Kraken. But you do get more of Ralph Fiennes, so there’s that. (Oh, and see it in 2D if you’re able.)

What else? Oh, this week’s Nic Cage movie at the Lightbox is “The Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call New Orleans“, so that’s a must-do. Give my regards to the judgmental iguana.

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