Leeds film festival secondary phase

Now I’ve seen two more films. First up was Vera Drake. Vera is a “working-class” 1950s abortionist. She performs the “operations” because she genuinely believes the girls need help, and charges no money for doing it. Eventually she gets caught and prosecuted under the ‘Offences Against the Person Act of 1861’.

Directed by Mike Leigh and with Imelda Staunton as Vera the film is absolutely wonderful. It primarily tells Vera’s story, but comments on many other things, including the story of an upper-class girl who pays for a professional operation and everything goes fine and dandy. Being rich rocks eh? Also, Reg and Ethel were the cutest couple I’ve ever seen, heh.

Wednesday night I saw “Die Fetten Jahre sind vorbei”, or as it was titled for us English monkeys “The Edukators” and stars the guy from Good Bye Lenin. It tells the story of 2 male activists who break into rich peoples homes when they are on holiday, rearrange furniture and leave notes telling them they have too much money. Basically, a girlie gets in the mix and everything fall apart (those damn girls). They end up kidnapping a businessman and living with him for a week in the country, but he turns out to be an interesting chap.

The Edukators was good and bad. Parts of the scripting, especially the revolution rhetoric, was really unnatural and basically sucked. The first half is almost laughable in parts, but it really improves after that. It seems the actors got to know each other better during filming (I’m assuming it was filmed in this order) and the chemistry improved. It also has some intentionally funny parts and quips too. “Good Bye Lenin” was much, much better though.

Four more films to go. One tonight (“About Baghdad”), two tomorrow (“Steamboy” and “Ghost in the Shell 2”) and one on Sunday (“The Invincibles”).

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