25 October 2010

No Surprises. Now There's a Surprise.

LoFiFest screenings/events attended: 6
Red carpets crossed: 2
A/B List actors sighted: 8
Bars of Green & Black chocolate: 4
Clive Owen sightings: zero

After a LoFiFest binge last week and the week before, my enthusiasm had dimmed for the final film for which I had a ticket: the members' surprise film. I had been feeling pretty knackered all day and by the time I left work, I was suffering from the tail end of a migraine and was thinking of bunking off. The fact that the surprise film last night was the remake of Brighton Rock, transposed to the '60s, and I wasn't keen to see it, having not warmed to either the book or the original film. Still, there was a chance that — after the mass protest at last year's LoFiFest when the surprise film and the members' surprise film were the same — the BFI might have scheduled a different film for the members this year and even though my ticket was free, I didn't want to miss out on something great.

Spotted at Charing Cross on the way home.
Well, I was less impressed still when the artistic director of the festival announced before the film started tonight that, "as you'll all probably know, tonight's film is the same as last night's surprise film." Actually, no, that's wrong. Neither the programme nor the LoFiFest website make it clear — or even suggest — that the two films will be the same and indeed, someone posting on the LoFiFest Facebook group, claimed they had been told by the BFI that the two films would be different. Never mind; I can't really complain when my ticket was free and at least I'll know next year that the two events will likely show the same film.

As for Brighton Rock, given my adverse viewing conditions (not helped by the tallest man in the cinema sitting in front of me), it could have been worse. I was almost nodding off for the first 20 minutes but then slowly became a little more engaged. Slightly. I wasn't convinced by either Sam Riley (Pinkie) or Andrea Riseborough (Rose) but Helen Mirren put in a good turn as Ida and Andy Serkis as Mr Colleoni.

I still couldn't find myself caring about any of the characters at the end, however, and was quite keen for it wrap up ASAP. Ah well. Better luck next year on the surprise front, BFI.

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