29 October, 2007

Film of the Week: "Me You and Everyone We Know"

"A lonely shoe salesman and an eccentric performance artist struggle to connect in this unique take on contemporary life." imdb

The key word there is 'unique', it's pretty clear that the voice belongs to the writer-director Miranda July and no-one else. I think this is useful to look at in terms of the interesting characters and where story can take you if you allow your imagination free rein.

"With most new filmmakers, it takes the audience a couple of films to nail down their sensibility, scan their preoccupations, begin connecting the dots that define their aesthetic identities. But Miranda July's mind has all the lucidity of a crystalline prism. The outside world goes in, and then emerges, refracted, rendered mystic yet concrete, through her magical, melancholic sensibility. Her tone and touch are so assured and her vision so fully developed that it's hard to believe that this is only her first feature film." Girish

"Miranda July is a performance artist; this is her first feature film (it won the Special Jury Prize at Sundance, and at Cannes won the Camera d'Or as best first film, and the Critics' Week grand prize). Performance art sometimes deals with the peculiarities of how we express ourselves, with how odd and wonderful it is to be alive. So does this film. As Richard slowly emerges from sadness and understands that Christine values him, and he must value her, for reasons only the two of them will ever understand, the movie holds its breath, waiting to see if their delicate connection will hold.

"Me and You and Everyone We Know" is a balancing act, as July ventures into areas that are risky and transgressive, but uses a freshness that disarms them, a directness that accepts human nature and likes to watch it at work." Roger Ebert

"True to her movie's title, Ms. July proposes a delicate, beguiling idea of community and advances it in full awareness of the peculiar obstacles that modern life presents.

One of these is the tendency of city dwellers - the movie takes place mainly in the flat, drab inland neighbourhoods of Los Angeles - to live hermetically sealed inside their own minds and habits. Individuality itself makes communication difficult, but the drive to be yourself does not dispel the longing to find (and maybe also to become) somebody else.

This longing is addressed in various ways, some of them touching, some funny, some borderline creepy." A O Scott

Official site
Miranda July interview

Miranda July's much talked about promotional site for her book of short stories

Monday 29 October,
Channel 4, 11:40pm - 1:25am

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