Friday, 17 August 2007

EIFF: 3 Weekend Picks - Reviews by Robert Duffin

Director: Simon Miller
Writer: Joanne Cockwell & Ian Finley McCleod
Runtime: 90 mins
EIFF Screening:
Sunday 19th 15:15 Cameo

Seachd – The Inaccessible Pinnacle is the first Scottish film filmed in Scottish Gaelic to get UK distribution. The Big Fish like tale follows Angus (Cola Domhnallach) as he attempts to reconnect with his dying grandfather (Aonghas Padraig Caimbeul) whilst reminiscing about their past. It’s a fine film with a wonderful central performance by Caimbeul whose whimsical stories of Spanish treasure hunters and poisoned maidens are wonderful to see realised. It occasionally relies too much on location footage of the Isle of Skye, but overall is a genuinely affecting drama that deserves to be seen.

Director: Jiri Menzel
Writer: Jiri Menzel
Runtime: 120 mins
EIFF Screening:
Saturday 18th 14:45 Cineworld

The traditions of silent cinema are still alive today as evident in the Czech film I Served The King of England. Director Jiri Menzel’s tale of Jan Dite whose ambition in life is to be a millionaire and own a hotel features a performance by Ivan Barnev as the young Dite comparable to Chaplin and Keaton. His doe eyed smile and expressive face make the dialogue lite performance an impressively physical display. It’s episodic script leaves the film feeling too long at a little under two hours, and its fairy tale apolitical version of WW II is at odds with the capricious first half of the film. Yet when in full flow it’s a joy to lap up Menzel’s choreography and bizarre imagery.

Director: Stephanie Johnes
Writer: Stephanie Johnes
Runtime: 80 mins
EIFF Screening:
Saturday 18th 16:00 Filmhouse
Monday 20th 20:00 Filmhouse

From first time director Stephanie Johnes, Doubletime brings you into the world of professional skip rope jumping and eschews memories of childhood playground fun; these kids aren’t messing. Following two competitive teams to Fusion Freestyle International Final at the Apollo Theatre in New York, Doubletime offers a unique glimpse into an underrated sport. The sheer athleticism on display as competitors fuse skip rope with hip-hop, dance, gymnastics and, in one spectacular scene, martial arts is stunning. Outside the spectacle is a touching tale of children from a variety of backgrounds coming together under the sport and learning life lessons as well as the story of the coaches who hope to bridge the racial divide created by the sport in the 1970s.


rhi edwards said...

Thanks for the positive review of Seachd - glad you liked the film and it is a tremendous encouragement to us as a team. Would you be able to make a small factual correction to your review - the dying grandfather is actually played by Aonghas Padraig Caimbeul(Angus Peter Campbell), so the next sentence should (obviously) read - "It's a fine film with a wonderful central perfomance by Caimbeul, whose whimsical stories etc...."

many thanks
Seachd production

Robert Duffin said...

Made the changes, I think festival fever must have got the better of me, many apologies! Thanks for checking out our site and I'm glad you enjoyed the content!