Fernando Fernán Gómez – El Extraño viaje AKA Strange Voyage (1964)

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Plot (From the DVD jacket):
In a small town close to the capital lives a family with three siblings: the serious and dominating Ignacia and her timid and withdrawn brother and sister, Paquita and Venancio. The monotonous life of the town is only shattered on Saturdays, when a band from Madrid comes to play their songs for the weekend dance. One stormy Saturday, Paquita and Venancio, frightened by noises, enter their sister’s room. There they think they see a mysterious fourth person. But their sister Ignacia denies it..
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John Paizs – Crime Wave [Director’s Cut] (1985)

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A Canadian cult classic.

A seminal film in Winnipeg independent film-making in the 1980’s Crime Wave is a work of incredible imagination and inventive ideas. Upon its release in the mid 1980’s the film played to terrific acclaim at film festivals across North America. Crammed with B movie gags and pop cultural references the movie follows the story of Steven Penny, a crime writer who wants to create the perfect colour crime movie but he is only good at writing beginnings and endings (and not the stuff in the middle.) Continue reading

Nick Donkin – The Junky’s Christmas (1993)

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Quote:
Based on the short story by Burroughs or the same name this is a short clay-mation released by Francis Ford Copolla.

Narrated by Burroughs, we follow Danny a junk sick and broke bum on his aimless wanderings to find that christmas fix, his eyes are sting and all he can feel is the raw ache in his bones, only the warming rush of Junk will make his at ease. Severed leg’s, drunk Doctors and and a 1/4 grain all go into making this a superb little tale that every family should gather round come christmas morning. Continue reading

Robert Downey Sr. – Pound (1970)

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Quote:
There’s something liberating about director Robert Downey’s films, even when by rights they should be put on a leash by their small budgets and settings. Never was the case truer than in POUND, the kind of project that major studios would run a mile from. Long out of circulation, Downey’s film populates a dog pound with different human characters who pace about their cage, uncertain about their future. Some wait in hope for their owners to redeem them, others plot to escape, but most wait to see if they will make it to the end of the day without getting ‘The Needle’. It seems like a cute gimmick to have human characters playing dogs, but Downey has never been one to play by the rules, even if they would provide an interior logic to his story. The dog-human switcheroo isn’t as straightforward as it should be: the first camera angle inside the pound shows us the characters as dogs, the second shows them again as people. But are we still to treat them as ‘dogs’? They have a TV set in their cage; can understand human speech; and are revealed in flashbacks as having human lives outside of the pound. Continue reading