Star & Crescent film reviewer Zach Lockwood provides an exclusive guide to this week’s screenings at No. 6 cinema.
Thursday, 22nd October: Iris (12A)
Who would’ve thought that a film about a 93-year-old style guru and fashion icon would be so engrossing, entertaining, and watchable? I knew nothing of Iris Apfel going into the film, having no interest in fashion at all. Coming out of the film I felt I had gained a remarkable insight into one of the global icons of the industry. If Edna Mode from Pixar’s The Incredibles was based on anyone real, Brad Bird’s inspiration must have been Iris Apfel.
The film details her life from her beginnings as an extrovert dresser to becoming an interior decorator in the White House, collector of outlandish jewellery and inspiration for so many male and female fashion styles. The documentary is broadly biographical, in the sense that it surveys her life so far, and very intimate, a one-man camera filming Iris as she travels the various shops and markets of New York searching for the latest fashion trend.
This film might be niche, but for a layman it’s a wonderful exploration of a life in fashion I would otherwise be unaware of. Get down to No. 6, be entertained and find out something new.
Zach’s rating: 8/10
Friday, 23rd October: Me, Earl and the Dying Girl (12A)
One of the surprise films of the summer, Me, Earl and the Dying Girl tells the story of Greg, amiable with everyone in his high school and, with his friend Earl, a parody-remake filmmaker. Greg’s family coerce him into spending time with Rachel, who has recently been diagnosed with cancer. What follows is a beautiful, comedic and heartfelt film although, in the words of Greg, ‘not a love story.’
Me, Earl and the Dying Girl is in a similar vein to 2013’s The Fault in our Stars, and every John Hughes movie (Breakfast Club, Ferris Buellers Day Off). The film blends teen comedy with Wes Anderson-esque visuals and dialogue to create a film that is not only hilarious but also touching and poignant.
This is the indie version of The Fault in our Stars, and far, far superior.
Zach’s rating: 8/10
Saturday, 24th October: Irrational Man (15)
Yes, it’s yet another film from Woody Allen, arguably America’s greatest comedic filmmaker. Joaquin Phoenix plays a miserable philosophy professor who moves to a new college and tries to settle in with his co-workers. One of whom is Emma Stone, who falls for him.
The prevailing theme of Irrational Man is murder, as in Love & Death and Match Point. Lovely stuff. In Allen’s hands murder often makes for a funny movie, but not this time. In his latest offering the script feels tired, lifeless and we’ve heard it all before in far superior movies. The characters are stereotypical Allen, with nothing new or mould-breaking bringing them to life.
When you look at Allen’s recent movies, particularly Blue Jasmine and Midnight in Paris, it’s hard not to think that Irrational Man is re-treading old ground, with Allen running out of the ideas needed to fuel a coherent story.
For those unfamiliar with his previous work, this might be an enjoyable two hours. For Annie Hall-ettes, though, this is not one for you.