CineVegas Day One

Books, Movies

It’s a bit difficult to keep up with posts about the CineVegas films since, well, I’m in the theater all day. Being thus, I will shoot for shorter overviews.

Impolex:

Yikes. I was very curious about this movie since it sounded like it was inspired by Thomas Pynchon’s Gravity’s Rainbow. It certainly was but very very loosely. The film centers on Tyrone who is searching the woods for “his” miniature V-2 rocket. Eh…that’s about it as far as plot goes. He wanders about the woods, bumps into strange characters, speaks with a talking octopus, makes out with a rocket. Films ends with an extended scene of Tyrone talking with Katje, who had been pestering him in the woods. Not sure how long this scene is but it felt like it would never end.

Plot-wise, Impolex uses Gravity’s Rainbow as a jumping off point but really has nothing much to do with the book. Characters have names from the book but they aren’t the characters; they just have the same names. The film makes references to items from the book: kazoos, bananas, the aforementioned octopus. But none of these references contribute anything to the story. They are just details thrown in.

I was disappointed not only because there was no substantial connection to Pynchon, but also because I didn’t want to start my day bored to tears. Impolex is only 74 minutes but as John Simon once said about Robert Creeley’s poetry: “They are short; they are not short enough.”

Moon

Moon, on the other hand, was phenomenal. I think part of the reason I was so taken with it is that it is an intelligent, philosophical science fiction film that is a throwback to films like 2001, Alien and Solaris, with a touch of Philip K. Dick thrown in. Director Duncan Jones admitted as much in the Q & A after the film.

It’s hard to say much about what Moon is about since saying anything feels like it would give away some of the ample twists the film provides. Sam Rockwell is excellent as Sam Bell, an astronaut who works by himself on a moon base operated by a company that extracts energy from moon rocks. The isolation wears on his mind and a hallucination causes him to have an accident, after which, Moon takes off in a fascinating and challenging direction.

The Square

The Square is about an affair gone very very wrong. Married man is in an affair with a married woman. Married woman’s husband shows up with a bag of money. Married women wants to steal money so that she and married man can run off. Nothing good can come of this and nothing does.

The Square is very bleak and intense. But as needs to happen in such a tale, the characters make poor choices that make a bad situation worse. There is a lot to like about The Square, but some of the poor choices feel, at times, a bit mechanical. The choices are made to prolong the plot.