Thursday, 31 January 2013

Capital Celluloid 2013 - Day 44: Wed Feb 13

Punch-Drunk Love (Anderson, 2002): Prince Charles Cinema, 8.45pm

This film is screening as part of the Paul Thomas Anderson retrospective at the Prince Charles. All the details are here.

Jigsaw Lounge website review:
'Boogie Nights and Magnolia are two of the most thrillingly audacious American films of the nineties. Punch-Drunk Love is, nevertheless, a quantum leap forward in every respect: watching it blaze across the screen, you get some idea how those Parisians might have felt back in 1895 when the Lumiere brothers turned on their projector for the first time. The art-form has been redefined, and nothing will ever be quite the same again.

This is, to say the very least, not an easy film to describe, though strictly speaking it is an Adam Sandler comedy: he’s Barry Egan, a hapless, somewhat dweeby loner who runs a small business selling novelty sink-plungers in suburban Los Angeles. Emotionally stunted and prone to fits of depression and violence, Barry stumbles into a romance with Lena (Emily Watson), an English friend of one of his seven sisters. He buys large quantities of chocolate mousse when he realises a marketing error will allow him to accumulate millions of air miles for relatively little outlay. And he’s also being viciously persecuted by a Utah phone-sex company’s extortion racket…

All this may sound like a recipe for some kind of desperately zany weirdness and in other hands that’s probably what might have resulted. But Anderson’s mastery of word, sound and image transforms unpromising material into a stunning emotional experience that dazzles on every level. Cinema’s rules have evolved in fits and starts over these 108 years — it’s staggering to watch one man come along and so beautifully shatter them all.'
Neil Young

Here is the trailer.

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