Edinburgh Film Festival 2011/ Take 7

Day 7

Meet Monica Velour **

Director Keith Bearden/ 98 mins 

After spending some time with Sex in the City, Kim Cattrall returns to the big screen with this obscure, independent comedy.

 

An awkward teenager Tobe (Dustin Ingram) sets off on a road trip to meet Monica Velour, an ’80s porn star for a rare live appearance hundreds of miles away. He discovers that the 49-year-old single mom lives in a trailer in rural Indiana, performs at seedy strip clubs to make ends meet. A starry-eyed Tobe  befriends Monica, further complicating her difficult life. 

 

The role of Monica is perfectly tailored for Cattrall and she is easily the best thing in this very unbalanced film. Her character is more subdued and vulnerable than the role she plays in the hit HBO show. 

 

The biggest problem is with the character of Tobe. It is hard to understand why the filmmakers have picked an actor who looks like and acts like Jon Heder. In fact if the title wasn’t shown in the credits, it would easy to mistake this for a sequel to Napoleon Dynamite.

 

While the story can be quite sweet and quaint, it does not know which angle the audience is supposed to follow. By telling two different character stories it loses focus, it would have been better to concentrate on Monica’s life.

 

At the end of the day, the film is just to plain and only thing the audience will remember is the unsightly image of Brian Dennehy’s ass at the end of the movie.

 

 

Bob Marley: The Making of a Legend *

Director Esther Anderson & Gian Godoy/ 90 mins 

What should have been a fitting tribute to a musical legend turns out to be a dull, lifeless mess

 

The documentary explores the rise to fame of Bob Marley and the Wailers using archival footage and talking head interviews.

 

There are no words to describe how terrible this film is, but judging how many people walked out of the screening (34 if one critic is to be believed) should show how bad it was.

 

The footage that was shot during the 70’s by Esther Anderson is not only of bad quality, but is highly irrelevant as well. All the audience is provided with is images of Marley smoking lots of dope, talking rubbish and basically doing pretty much nothing. 

 

The narration provided by Anderson also gives us no insight into Marley’s character or personality and is delivered in a expressionless tone. While the audience is introduced to people in his life without being given any detail about who they are or what they did. Even the one to one interviews are overused. There are no cutaways or different camera angles, but just the same static shot during these pieces to camera.

 

Only die hard fanatics will enjoy this dire piece of filmmaking and even then it may be a bit of a struggle. If Bob could see this he would be spinning in his grave. A tribute? More like a tragedy.

 

Reviews by Paul Logan

 

 

 

 

 

 

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