Excursions In The Narrative Arts
I went to see Sweet Cider, the new production from Tamasha, at the Arcola last night. It is a fairly familar bunch of elements – interracial, interreligious relationships, honour, family, gender – but it is a good balance of weight, simmering frustration and humour, only slightly shading off into melodrama at the end. A very good young cast too.
Afterwards I re-watched Lilo And Stitch. God, that film is awesome. Okay, it slightly tails off when it focuses on ohana but it is simultaneously more adventurous and more grounded than most disney films and the individual scenes involving Lilo and Stitch are wonderful. The only real misfire is Bubbles, a social worker who happens to be an ex-CIA agent and looks like Ving Rhames. It is one weirdness too far.
Earlier in the week I watched Cloverfield and Iron Man. Both suffer from having feeble, idiotic plots but whilst Cloverfield is every bit as bad as I expected, Iron Man is as good as I’d hoped. Much of this is down to Robert Downey Jr, who, like Johnny Deep, he has the personal presence to inject life into what could otherwise be a typically soulless Hollywood commercial property. The film wisely focuses on him and (much more than I was expecting) the creation of the suit, including lots of nice incidental detail. It is interesting to see a depiction of an engineer hero rather than an action hero in a blockbuster. The plot is still stupid though.