Tag Archives: foreign film

Audience Reaction: The Florida Project

The Pontardawe Film Club audience reaction to The Florida Project was as follows:

AUDIENCE REACTION:

The Florida Project failed to hit the mark for film club

  • Excellent              8
  • Very Good          12
  • Good                     8
  • Average               3
  • Poor                      9

Giving an overall rating of 54%

COMMENTS:

  • Interesting.  Excellent performances from the cast.  Very engaging
  • The divide
  • Very good but very depressing
  • Very well acted
  • In a word – ‘WOW!’
  • Not the ‘We are poor but make our own fun’ film I was expecting
  • Easy to judge the mother for bringing up her child as a friend, but , who knows what background she had that ill-prepared her for motherhood
  • Brilliant film about awful people living in the most awful country in the world
  • Hell of a message and very dull in parts.  Desperate film about desperate situation
  • Engaging from start to the staggering finish – surely destined to be a classic!  More of this please
  • Random story line.  All over the place.  Irrelevant end!
  • Hard to see what the point of this film was – and impossible to tell what they were talking about most of the time.
  • Confusing finale
  • Too long, bored at times, moving at end
  • Awful end

Our Next Film: The Florida Project

Wednesday, 14 March 2018, 2:00 pm & 7:30 pm

2017, USA, 111 minutes, (15)
Director – Sean Baker

Set over one summer, the film follows precocious six-year-old Moonee as she courts mischief and adventure with her ragtag playmates and bonds with her rebellious but caring mother, all while living in the shadows of Walt Disney World.

TRAILER:

LINKS:
IMDb – The Florida Project
Rotten Tomatoes – The Florida Project

AUDIENCE REACTION:

The Florida Project failed to hit the mark for film club

  • Excellent              8
  • Very Good          12
  • Good                     8
  • Average               3
  • Poor                      9

Giving an overall rating of 54%

COMMENTS:

  • Interesting.  Excellent performances from the cast.  Very engaging
  • The divide
  • Very good but very depressing
  • Very well acted
  • In a word – ‘WOW!’
  • Not the ‘We are poor but make our own fun’ film I was expecting
  • Easy to judge the mother for bringing up her child as a friend, but , who knows what background she had that ill-prepared her for motherhood
  • Brilliant film about awful people living in the most awful country in the world
  • Hell of a message and very dull in parts.  Desperate film about desperate situation
  • Engaging from start to the staggering finish – surely destined to be a classic!  More of this please
  • Random story line.  All over the place.  Irrelevant end!
  • Hard to see what the point of this film was – and impossible to tell what they were talking about most of the time.
  • Confusing finale
  • Too long, bored at times, moving at end
  • Awful end

Audience Reaction: The Death of Stalin

AUDIENCE REACTION: The Death Of Stalin

An intrepid audience braved the weather and turned up  to enjoy the latest Lannucci film – although it has to be said it was Siberian weather inside as well as outside last night – apologise from the Arts Centre – Theatre Genedlaethol were performing in the day and their 5 hour get-out necessitated the doors being open until after 6pm – the boilers just couldn’t manage to heat up the room is such a short time!

  • Excellent 24
  • Very good 7
  • Good 9
  • Average 1

Giving an overall rating of 82.9%

COMMENTS:

  • Laugh out loud and somewhat uncomfortably funny given the very brutal events portrayed
  • Glad I have seen it.  Fancy not recognising Simon Russell Beale   Some great lives.  However a bit of me agrees with critics  – it is no laughing matter.  Good film though.
  • It’s so surprising that we can laugh about such tragic events but yet we did.  So black and we laughed so much.
  • A very humorous look at life of the time of secret Russia – good acting
  • Superb.  Second time I’ve seen it.  Thank you
  • At times laugh out loud funny, though some of it was a bit tasteless.  General interesting and enjoyable
  • Light and dark – a highly amusing take on an ugly period in history
  • Very enjoyable but freezing cold
  • Wonderful film   horosho spasibo

Our Next Film: The Death Of Stalin

Wednesday, 28 February 2018,  7:30 pm only

2017, France/UK, 106 minutes, (15)
Director – Armando Iannucci

A satirical take on the Soviet dictator’s last days and depicts the chaos of the regime after his death.

TRAILER:

LINKS:
IMDb – The Death Of Stalin
Rotten Tomatoes – The Death Of Stalin

AUDIENCE REACTION:

An intrepid audience braved the weather and turned up  to enjoy the latest Lannucci film – although it has to be said it was Siberian weather inside as well as outside last night – apologise from the Arts Centre – Theatre Genedlaethol were performing in the day and their 5 hour get-out necessitated the doors being open until after 6pm – the boilers just couldn’t manage to heat up the room is such a short time!

  • Excellent 24
  • Very good 7
  • Good 9
  • Average 1

Giving an overall rating of 82.9%

COMMENTS:

  • Laugh out loud and somewhat uncomfortably funny given the very brutal events portrayed
  • Glad I have seen it.  Fancy not recognising Simon Russell Beale   Some great lives.  However a bit of me agrees with critics  – it is no laughing matter.  Good film though.
  • It’s so surprising that we can laugh about such tragic events but yet we did.  So black and we laughed so much.
  • A very humorous look at life of the time of secret Russia – good acting
  • Superb.  Second time I’ve seen it.  Thank you
  • At times laugh out loud funny, though some of it was a bit tasteless.  General interesting and enjoyable
  • Light and dark – a highly amusing take on an ugly period in history
  • Very enjoyable but freezing cold
  • Wonderful film   horosho spasibo

Our Next Film: The killing Of A Sacred Deer

Thursday, 1 February 2018, 2:00 pm & 7:30 pm

2017, UK/Ireland, 121 minutes, (15)
Director – Yorgos Lanthimos

Steven (Colin Farrell) a charismatic surgeon, is forced to make an unthinkable sacrifice after his life starts to fall apart, when the behaviour of a teenage boy he has taken under his wing turns sinister. Also starring Nicole Kidman.

TRAILER:

LINKS:
IMDb – The Killing of a Sacred Deer
Rotten Tomatoes – The Killing of a Sacred Deer

AUDIENCE REACTION:

Well this one certainly split the audience!

Excellent      9
Very Good   4
Good             9
Average        6
Poor               1

Giving an overall rating of 62%

COMMENTS:

  • Totally weird
  • That’s two hours of my life I’ll never get back
  • Didn’t think I would like it after ‘Lobster’ but I did, so either I’m sick or tired
  • Reminded me of David Lynch, Kubrick and Michael Haneke in the way it was so unsettling and challenging to watch.  Great cinematography and score.  Provocative narrative.
  • Not as good as ‘Lobster’ but I still enjoyed.  The photography shots were good.  Acting very wooden but that was their characters.  Missing the link to the title of the film and the film itself.
  • In one word- hysterical.  Also remarkable cinema, so appalling and funny
  • Unusual macabre, zany music and camera angles – odd with no laughs
  • Does it mean something?  Is it a metaphor?  Is it telling of the limitations of medicine?  From the outset the relationships were peculiar.  It is Stephen’s self- destructive phantasy?  No idea!  The music/sounds were unsettling and unpleasant.  The final classical piece of music was sublime
  • Quite derivative in its score, pacing and style.  I think it wants to be understood on a metaphorical level.  From the outset the family seem odd and unaffectionate.   On the surface they have all they need materially but they’re soulless.  A metaphor for the death of the ‘American Dream’??
  • Good acting but what the hell???   What was it all about?
  • The filming was good – sound and music good but acting was wooden and hard to have any feeling for any of the characters.
  • A gripping film right until the end.  Moving performance by Martin.  But why do people have to eat so noisily in the cinema!

Audience Reaction: I Am Not A Witch

AUDIENCE REACTION: I Am Not A Witch

Oh dear, a rather mixed reception for ‘I am Not a Witch’ resulted in an overall score of just 52.69%

The voting was as follows:

Excellent  3
Very Good 13
Good 15
Average 5
Poor  3

COMMENTS:

  • Witch or goat?  I suspect watching a goat for an hour and a half might have been slightly more interesting!
  • A seriously weird film — but, having said that, one containing many seriously funny moments. A sort of “satire meets magical realism”. A few shots were over-long, I thought, but there was some fine acting, especially from the 8-year-old (?) lead.
  • Left many questions but shone a fine light on societal acceptance of abuse
  • Arresting scenery and great use of music and scenery
  • I like slow paced films but this I must say was too much.  But some interesting shots
  • Very interesting and unusual film but astonishing at the same time.  Very good photography
  • Weird but interesting
  • A fascinating blend of ancient and modern culture. Beautifully photographed
  • Perplexing and interesting
  • Sadly subtitles and cataracts don’t go
  • Excellent
  • Too many questions unanswered but fascinating
  • A sinister reminder that superstition and child abuse are still problematic in Africa – well acted and always menacing
  • Which witch was which?  A sad tale of corruption and child abuse in dark Africa
  • Directing and editing unprofessional.  Boring.   Tradition interestingly frightening.  Does it still go on?  Was the poor child killed because she didn’t bring the rain?  Were all the other ‘witches’ turned into goats at the end?
  • One to ponder on
  • I suspect there is more to this film that meets the eye and that the film maker has a back story we would benefit from hearing.

Audience Reaction: Sweet Bean (An)

AUDIENCE REACTION: Sweet Bean (An)

A huge turn out for members for our last film of the season (39 out of 91 members)– the only film which had higher attendance this year was Manchester by the Sea.

Votes as follows:

14 Excellent
18 very good
7 good
1 average

Which gives an overall rating of 78.12%

COMMENTS:

  • Peter Bradshaw may have thought the film sentimental and slightly preposterous but I rather liked it
  • Gentle and touching insight into Japanese culture but just a bit too slow
  • Evocative, sensitive, and delicate.   Like cherry blossom and bean paste I guess.   Not sentimental but sad
  • Beautiful, still and poignant.  Very moving description of loneliness and people overcoming damaged lives
  • A lovely film on so many levels, culture and the role of people of all ages.  Great
  • An emotional spiritual film about life.  Slow but I enjoyed,  guess you have to be in a melancholy mood to watch.  Well acted, real tears, a very reflective film.
  • Touching, charming film
  • I was a bit sceptical at first but the film became compelling and I enjoyed it
  • Moving story  very strong message about the influence of rumours
  • I was quite surprised by this – not what I was expecting from the trailer
  • They all had their problems but blossomed together
  • A sweet tale – great that the main character was an elderly, disabled, marginalised woman who was the source of the sweetness
  • Beautiful – the perfect antidote to Hollywood
  • Very touching, lovely film but sad

Our Next Film: I Am Not a Witch

Tuesday, 16 January 2018, 2:00 pm & 7:30 pm

2017, UK/France, 93 minutes, (15) subtitled
Director – Tungano Nyoni

From the Welsh/Zambian director a tale of a 9 year old orphan girl who is identified as a witch by her local community and is forced to choose between life in a travelling witch camp or being transformed into a goat.

A pulsingly odd and strikingly original debut’, The Guardian

TRAILER:

LINKS:
IMDb – I Am Not A Witch
Rotten Tomatoes – I Am Not A Witch

AUDIENCE REACTION:

Oh dear, a rather mixed reception for ‘I am Not a Witch’ resulted in an overall score of just 52.69%

The voting was as follows:

Excellent  3
Very Good 13
Good 15
Average 5
Poor  3

COMMENTS:

  • Witch or goat?  I suspect watching a goat for an hour and a half might have been slightly more interesting!
  • A seriously weird film — but, having said that, one containing many seriously funny moments. A sort of “satire meets magical realism”. A few shots were over-long, I thought, but there was some fine acting, especially from the 8-year-old (?) lead.
  • Left many questions but shone a fine light on societal acceptance of abuse
  • Arresting scenery and great use of music and scenery
  • I like slow paced films but this I must say was too much.  But some interesting shots
  • Very interesting and unusual film but astonishing at the same time.  Very good photography
  • Weird but interesting
  • A fascinating blend of ancient and modern culture. Beautifully photographed
  • Perplexing and interesting
  • Sadly subtitles and cataracts don’t go
  • Excellent
  • Too many questions unanswered but fascinating
  • A sinister reminder that superstition and child abuse are still problematic in Africa – well acted and always menacing
  • Which witch was which?  A sad tale of corruption and child abuse in dark Africa
  • Directing and editing unprofessional.  Boring.   Tradition interestingly frightening.  Does it still go on?  Was the poor child killed because she didn’t bring the rain?  Were all the other ‘witches’ turned into goats at the end?
  • One to ponder on
  • I suspect there is more to this film that meets the eye and that the film maker has a back story we would benefit from hearing.

Our Next Film: Sweet Bean

Tuesday, 19 December 2017, 2:00 pm & 7:30 pm

2015, Japan | France | Germany, 113 minutes, (PG)
Director – Naomi Kawase


Struggling street food vendor Sentaro finds himself confronted with Tokue, an odd but sympathetic elderly lady looking for work. When he reluctantly accepts its not long before Tokue proves to have an extraordinary fit when it comes to making ‘an’ the sweet red bean paste filling used in his dorayakis – which starts a relationship that is about much more than just street food.

TRAILER:

LINKS:
IMDb – Sweet Bean (An)
Rotten Tomatoes – Sweet Bean (An)

AUDIENCE REACTION:

A huge turn out for members for our last film of the season (39 out of 91 members)– the only film which had higher attendance this year was Manchester by the Sea.

Votes as follows:

14 Excellent
18 very good
7 good
1 average

Which gives an overall rating of 78.12%

COMMENTS:

  • Peter Bradshaw may have thought the film sentimental and slightly preposterous but I rather liked it
  • Gentle and touching insight into Japanese culture but just a bit too slow
  • Evocative, sensitive, and delicate.   Like cherry blossom and bean paste I guess.   Not sentimental but sad
  • Beautiful, still and poignant.  Very moving description of loneliness and people overcoming damaged lives
  • A lovely film on so many levels, culture and the role of people of all ages.  Great
  • An emotional spiritual film about life.  Slow but I enjoyed,  guess you have to be in a melancholy mood to watch.  Well acted, real tears, a very reflective film.
  • Touching, charming film
  • I was a bit sceptical at first but the film became compelling and I enjoyed it
  • Moving story  very strong message about the influence of rumours
  • I was quite surprised by this – not what I was expecting from the trailer
  • They all had their problems but blossomed together
  • A sweet tale – great that the main character was an elderly, disabled, marginalised woman who was the source of the sweetness
  • Beautiful – the perfect antidote to Hollywood
  • Very touching, lovely film but sad

Our Next Film: Frantz

Thursday, 30 November 2017, 2:00 pm & 7:30 pm

2016, France | Germany, 113 minutes, (12A)
Director – François Ozon


A stylish black and white film set in the aftermath of WWI. When a young German woman grieving for the death of her fiancé meets a mysterious Frenchman who visits the grave to lay flowers.

TRAILER:

LINKS:
IMDb – Frantz
Rotten Tomatoes – Frantz

AUDIENCE SOCRE: 87.96%

Votes as follows:

Excellent  16
Very Good 9
Good 2

COMMENTS:

  • I’ve not been so affected since first reading Birdsong regarding the First World War.  Acting by all leads very very good.   Narrative line about responsibility profound.
  • Beautifully filmed and lovely music
  • Love, loss, self sacrifice – it was just deliciously emotional
  • Finding a way to continue to live after loss and pain
  • Strong statement made by parents against war
  • Extremely moving and believable story.  Totally gripping
  • Rather too many improbabilities in the story line, but an interesting film with some very nice photography
  • Really touching
  • A beautiful and moving examination of the lies we tell ourselves and others
  • Brilliant thought provoking film
  • WAR and PEACE  both painful and complicated.  Black and white gave it the ‘old movie’ feel
  • The futility of war!  Excellent acting and good music
  • Not sure of the ending
  • Beautiful film with some good plot twists.  Very moving
  • Sad but lovely – loved the music – sad times
  • Powerful emotional film – very special and lasting

Our Next Film: The Red Turtle (La Tortue Rouge)

Thursday, 26 October 2017, 2:00 pm & 7:30 pm

2016, France | Belgium | Japan, 80 minutes, (PG)
Director – Michael Dudok de Wit


A man is shipwrecked on a deserted island. He is desperate to escape until one day he meets a strange, giant red turtle and begins a friendship that will change his life. Exquisite wordless animation from Studio Ghibli.

TRAILER:

LINKS:
IMDb – The Red Turtle (La tortue rouge)
Rotten Tomatoes – The Red Turtle (La tortue rouge)

AUDIENCE SOCRE: 79%

Votes as follows

Excellent 21
Very Good 13
Good 6
Average 1
Poor 2

COMMENTS:

  • A simple story realised with such beauty and an emotive and heart-wrenching score
  • Was a bit long but I liked the crabs
  • A sweet tale – almost believed in the cartoons
  • Really enjoyed the Welsh short films – Turtle – confused – will have to think about it
  • Too many adverts
  • Haunting music and a charming tale with reminiscences of ‘Castaway’ and ‘Water Babies’ excellent animation
  • Don’t recommend
  • Simplicity at its best  beautiful wordless film  the 3 shorts were also outstanding – excellent evening
  • Beautiful gentle and absorbing.  Very pleased my wife made me watch it
  • Moving, mysterious and magical
  • Beautiful images – but hopeless storyline
  • Beautiful animation (of course) loved the music.  Another excellent choice
  • Wonderful animation and story- a beautiful film – enjoyed the short films too
  • Absolutely enchanting – lots of tears shed
  • The grainy, lush animation style is so lovely to rest your eyes on!   What a heart warming and lovely story about mankind/womankind and nature.  Than you for showing this
  • The short films were brilliant
  • Gorgeous, detailed and captivating