The New Zealand International Film Festival started on 9 July. It is my biggest annual indulgence. I spend time and money watching what I love. Movies. All kinds of movies, from all parts of the world and across genres. One year I watched thirty-eight films. This year I am being a very good girl and watching only twenty-one. I have a well-set process by which I go about organising myself around the festival.
1- I get the programme and go through all the films. Mark the ones I want to see. The first wish list usually has fifty to sixty films on it. That is impossible to do-even if I camp out on Queen Street.
2- So I cull the list keeping films that might not come back through theatrical release, are interesting documentaries, big name works that I have to see, the HOMEGROWN section of short films and Asian films. (I love Korean cinema and Japanese animation.)
3- I co-ordinate screening sessions with my ‘free’ time which means I might have to drop a film or two.
4- I buy tickets.
Industry guild members get discounts hence so do I, being a member of the NZ Writers Guild (and Women In Film And Television, NZ).
Have just come back from the HOMEGROWN WORKS ON FILM session. Tonight I will watch TEZA.
Last night I saw John Woo’s RED CLIFF, the international version. Thoroughly enjoyed it. Apart from the blockbusting spectacle (and some corny moments in the script), it was the male star cast that drew me to it. I am a huge fan of Tony Leung. He is always such a pleasure to watch on screen. A fine actor and a good looking man. Then of course there are the gorgeous Takeshi Kaneshiro and Chang Chen.
So ithas been a good start. Reiterating the magic of movies; why I do what I do; the art and craft of storytelling. Sitting in the dark theatre as the titles come on and reels unroll. The start of my annual indulgence until 25 July 2009. That night I’ll close it THE GOLD RUSH on live music.