*All three films were amazing
Despite my love for film, I’m not that big on writing about the films I see. I’m not sure what it is exactly, but for better or worse “reviews” tend to put an idea in ones head about whether or not a film is going to be good. The problem with this of course is that, at least I believe, a lot of the reasons why we like a film, have to do with our experiences in life. And that’s why it’s possible, at least to me, for films to be good despite their recognition within the film community.
The film community, like most “communities”, tends to be a bit sheepish at times when it comes to discussing films that they feel aren’t good because they don’t meet a certain criteria that they feel should be present for a film to be good.
That’s why I prefer to say very little about the films I see, because I think it’s best for whoever is interested in the film, to go into it, without any prior notion to whether or not it has been validated as an exceptional film.
NOW I WILL TALK ABOUT THE FILMS
That being said, in my opinion (take that for what it is), the films I saw today were very well told stories.
My favorite, and this is no surprise, was Waiting For Lightning. The film followed legendary skateboarder Danny Way, and the events that lead up to his world famous jump over the Great Wall of China. Now for fans of skateboarding, this is something you would have known about for many years now. Surprisingly though, the film featured a lot of about Way’s family life that I hadn’t known about. I think the reason I enjoyed it the most, was because I could tell from the noises in the audience that people were sort of really experiencing skateboarding for the first time. The triumphs and downfalls, and the journey of this extraordinary man who has taken the sport beyond its limits time and time again. When a film transcends borders like that, you know it’s well done.
The second film I saw was The Invisible War. The film looked at the sexual abuse of both women and men within the military (Army, US Coast Guard, Navy, etc.), and how it was and has been more or less swept under the rug for decades. First off I’ll say that the film was very polished. Not that makes or breaks a film for me, but I just think it does help the audience, at least myself, become a little more engaged. There’s really not too much to say about the film. I thought it was excellent. It combined statistical information, a long with the stories of rape victims (mostly female, one male), and how they are coping with the events that transpired while serving for their country. I think that was the most emotional part of the film and the stories. The fact that these people had, and still have the desire to serve their country, but are so scarred (rightfully so), not only because of the traumatic experience, but because those they trusted the most turned on them in their time of need.
The final film I saw was Waiting Room. The film took place in Oakland, California, and looked at the day in the life of both patients, and residents of a county hospital. Of course it isn’t news that those without insurance have to go through a much more prolonged, and uncertain type of healthcare system. The filmmaker really did a good job though of helping the audience create relationships with both the patients and employees of the hospital. The film has its humorous moments, but also makes me (as a Canadian) appreciate the universal healthcare that I have. I thought it was edited very well, and the film flowed perfectly as a result. I also appreciated the fact that the film didn’t enter the political realm, and focused specifically on the people.
That’s it. See these films if you can.