I spent yesterday at a local cinema. I dedicated all that time to honor two very special New York films and I wanted to make sure I could watch them both on the same day. Both were so incredible and explored love and sexuality in two very different, raw and pure ways. Neither film glorified sex or nudity, even though they had a fair share of both (one WAY more than the other, but again, it wasn't glorified and was very very much justified). As an audience member, I was really really moved by both films. As a person who works in film, I had a few notes, but I will try to keep them short as to allow more gushing."Shame" explores the life of Brandon Sullivan, a sex addict. Honestly, this film really educated me, because I (like many people) felt that all men were sex addicts, and they used it as a medical term to get away with being creepy perverts. Wow. Just wow. I stand corrected. An addiction is an addiction, whether it be drugs, alcohol, or in this case Sex. Director, Steve McQueen did a tremendous job expressing that. Wealthy, attractive and successful Brandon would often times resemble a junky when he is trying to get his fix. This is where I give a small kudos to the Costume Designer, David Robinson. At first I didn't understand what he was trying to accomplish, but the minute I saw which way the film was headed it all made sense and immediately earned my respect. In fact I found it rather genius.
I'm going to take a minute to objectify Michael Fassbender. He should change his surname to Assbender because that's exactly what he is in this film. Superb performance. He really really gave himself to the character and I applaud him for going that far with it. I loved him in Inglorious Bastards and have been looking forward to seeing his beautiful face onscreen again. I got more than what I wished for; I got to see more than his face. Thank you, Jesus. YES.
Mr. Assbender is a very very handsome man, but his talent and IQ make him uber sexy. It would be a pleasure/dream/fantasy to dress/undress him.
Carey Mulligan plays Brandon's sister, Sissy. She was good. All I have to say is, whenever I saw her in her white outfit, I kept thinking she looked and sounded like Drew Barrymore as Casey from Scream.
This is from my absolute favorite scene in the movie. I really enjoyed the cinematography in this film because of its long, uneasy shots. This particular scene (and shot) was very long and I felt like my heart was going to explode. It was so intense in so many ways yet with hardly any movement at all. So uncomfortable, but so incredible.
Pariah was an absolutely amazing story. I felt like there were technical issues with sound and man did this crew desperately need a tripod. The uniforms in this film were unconvincing, and took me right out of it but it was only for the length of the scene.
I promise, those are my only notes...Pariah introduces us to Alike (pronounced uh-LEE-kay), a lesbian struggling with sexual identity, risking friendship and family; a true pariah.
It's so refreshing to see a story about gay characters who aren't victims of rape, hate crime, or AIDS or as some over exaggerated flamboyant butt of a joke. This film deals more with life at home and school, something we can all relate to.
The ending made me cry, which is hard to do. I'm still haunted by Alike's final poem.
Much respect to Eniola Dawodu, the Costume Designer of Pariah. She doesn't have much experience, but I was quite impressed at how she was able to dramatically transform such insanely beautiful women to a pair of masculine "AG"s.
Adepero Oduye is absolutely stunning as a fem and an AG. Job well done. Her performance still haunts me.Pernell Walker's transformation blew me away as well, as did her performance.
Before I close, I have to mention Kim Wayans. Like Mo'Nique in Precious, I was quite impressed with this comedienne's approach on such a serious role. She made it easy to hate her, which means she served the character well. I will always prefer Ms. Wayans in the comedy world, but very much appreciated her work and dedication in Pariah.