Donald Clarke

Whingeing about cinema and real life since 2009

Still alive at JDIFF

I suppose, in addressing the highlights of my week, I can hardly avoid mentioning that I had a nice chat with Al Pacino yesterday. You can read the interview on Saturday, so I won’t bothering going into too much detail …

Wed, Feb 22, 2012, 21:38

   

I suppose, in addressing the highlights of my week, I can hardly avoid mentioning that I had a nice chat with Al Pacino yesterday. You can read the interview on Saturday, so I won’t bothering going into too much detail here. I will, however, point out that he was a real gent. He was happy to natter about all the old stuff and seemed very at home to a bit of self-deprecation. The levels of fame that still gather round Pacino are something to behold. Ever play that game “Who would you be in…”? The notion is that, when gathered in the pub, you and your friends discuss, erm, who you would be in, say, Dad’s Army, Reservoir Dogs or Cheers. When playing the Godfather version of the game, everyone wants to be Michael, but most folk know, deep in their sad hearts, that they’re really Fredo. No wonder Al is still such an idol.

One of the year’s best films was screened yesterday. I have been going on about Markus Schleinzer’s Michael for the last eight months. But the more I think about it the more impressive it seems. This is the Austrian picture about a pedophile who keeps a boy imprisoned in his basement. It hardly needs to be said that the film does not count as light entertainment. But it offers a horribly plausible account of how such a relationship might progress. Undoubtedly some people will think the film in bad taste, but you can’t deny that Schleinzer has thought very deeply about his subject. I don’t envy him that experience. If you want to know more, my interview with Markus runs in The Ticket on Friday.

Pondering what’s still to come, I enthusiastically suggest that you try to get a ticket for The Raid on Saturday morning. It’s the best Indonesian film you’ll ever see that’s been directed by a Welshman. The good people of the Dublin Film Critics Circle, already pondering their awards, were blasted into oblivion by it. Oh, yeah!

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