8 April 2022.
This week has a strange batch of releases, of which only two will be covered here. I would therefore recommend you hurry to the fine films that have been on the screens already. They will soon disappear, as did WILD MEN, the hilarious “Fargo”-like, Danish/Norwegian gem which probably no one saw. I gave it ***1/2. Pity that it’s gone.
SO, don’t miss HOUSE OF GUCCI, EN CORPS, NOBODY HAS TO KNOW (L’Ombre d’un mensonge), LAURENCE DEONNA, BELFAST, NOTRE DAME BRÛLE, MAISON DE RETRAIT, MAIGRET or HISTOIRE DE MA FEMME. The last two are showing at The Grutli. All reviewed before and all excellent!
SWAN SONG ***
Udo Keir, the veteran German/international character actor with piercing, turquoise blue eyes, carries this whole film. Director Todd Stephens, who specializes in films about gays, has created this movie from his memories of an old hairdresser he knew while growing up in his hometown in Ohio.
Mr. Pat, the gay coiffeur is now living in a nursing home and exists from day to day, not even wishing to remember his glory days when he was the toast of the town in all his queen-like splendor. They called him the Liberace of hairdressers.
When he is called upon to coif his loveliest, most wealthy client (Linda Evans, from TV’s “Dynasty”), now dead and lying in a funeral home, he begins a meandering journey through the dilapidated town, discovering a changed world with none of its former allure.
The heavily-accented Keir plays Pat Pitsenbarger to the hilt, at times tender, at times irritable, but always above the curious, the ordinary and the memorable people he crosses on his slow way to the funeral home, remembering the heyday of his youth.
This is the director’s loving homage to a flamboyant man whose difference made him feel a tingling of his own nascent gayness. The film is slow-going but worth the ride, for all the places and characters it comes across. Like its subject, the movie is both touching and queer.
(Showing at the Cine17)
EN MÊME TEMPS *** (vo French)
Speaking of queer, you’ve never seen anything quite like this crazy French satire about politicians. Let’s just say it’s not for everyone, though it is hilarious.
But then, that’s what the two directors, Gustave Kerven and Benoit Delepine, are known for – their usual irreverent look at the foibles of French life. This might be their ultimate innovation.
The film is not easy to describe without any spoilers. Suffice it to say it follows one evening of the extraordinary coupling of two rival politicians, one left and one right. Despite all the misadventures they get into – from champagne bars to the fanatically crazy feminists they encounter – they manage to almost get by with their usual political blather.
This is a highly entertaining attack on corruption, political correctness and the too-often stupidity of our elected officials. What else is new?!
Beyond films, this weekend has a fabulous offering of two concerts on TANGO and FADO – see below. For the following weekend programs, go on their website.
For more reviews click here.
Superb **** Very Good *** Good ** Mediocre * Miserable – no stars
Neptune Ravar Ingwersen reviews film extensively for publications in Switzerland. She views 4 to 8 films a week and her aim is to sort the wheat from the chaff for readers.