This Must Be the Place is a film which frustrated me. In amongst its less appealing aspects are some great camera work, interesting ideas and flawless deadpan performance from Sean Penn but this is all stifled by a script which doesn’t know what it wants to be and despite introducing some heavy topics, doesn’t have anything to say. The film centres on an aging and bored American Rock Star called Cheyenne (Sean Penn). Cheyenne, still dressed in his Goth rock attire, shuffles around his Irish Mansion and into town where he stares aimlessly at supermarket shelves. His lack of vigour is stark contrast to the joyful expressions of his wife Jane (Frances McDormand) who occasionally attempts to remove the gloom from her husband’s life. One day Cheyenne decides he is going to attempt to reconcile with his estranged father and travels back to New York to see him. Arriving too late he instead takes it upon himself to go on a road trip and track down the 90 year old ex-Nazi who persecuted his father in Auschwitz.
Friday, 5 April 2013
Saturday, 26 May 2012
"What kind of bird are you?"
It’s 1965 and pre teen pen pals, Sam (Jared Gilman) and Suzy (Kara Heyward) agree to run away from home and meet up a year after meeting for the first time. While the two of them head off into the wilderness of Suzy’s twelve mile long home island a search party that includes Island Policeman Bruce Willis, Scout leader Edward Norton, Suzy’s parents Bill Murray and Frances McDormand and Sam’s fellow Scouts set about trying to hunt the eloping children down in the days preceding a huge storm.
I should say from the outset that I am a huge Wes Anderson fan and have absolutely loved all of his films with the exception of Fantastic Mr Fox so I went in expecting great things. My expectations were matched and even perhaps exceeded. I loved this film.
sets up Suzy’s home life in a fantastic opening sequence which features some exquisite
tracking shots through the family home. Before anything is said it is already
obvious to the audience that Suzy is a loner who longs for something bigger,
something more. Her parents do not get on and are never even seen in the same
room, let alone talking to each other. She has three younger brothers who
appear to get along very well. Her house is large and well furnished,
indicating wealth if not happiness. All of this is established in one long
sequence of beautiful camera movements which last no longer than a couple of
minutes. Sam’s life with his Scout troupe is shown in a similar manner although
it soon becomes apparent that he has already escaped in search of his love,