Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Out of practice

When you go six weeks between film reviews -- the last film I reviewed was Zootopia on March 10th -- you start to worry about your skills dulling. In fact, you wonder if you even remember how to do this at all.

Those six weeks more or less coincide with a visit from family, who came over from the U.S. starting on March 3rd. But they've been gone a week now, so it was time for me to get back on the horse.

Or the sheep, as it were.

The other thing about having a long layoff between reviews is that you'd kind of like to get started again with something easy. You know, a light comedy or a dumb action movie. Something where you can write the first line or two of the review even before you've seen the movie.

Rams, perhaps the only movie I've ever seen that was made entirely in Iceland and by Icelanders, would fit none of those descriptions. It's a drama (described as a deadpan comedy in some quarters) about sheep farmers who are brothers in rural Iceland, who haven't spoken in decades because of a never-named beef, and who are both competing for the prize of top ram in their local community of fellow sheep farmers. The movie itself won top prize in the Un Certain Regard category at Cannes last year.

After I left the 8:40 screening on Tuesday night -- utterly exhausted from my younger son's third straight 5 a.m. wakeup call -- I had no idea what I would write about the movie. The beginnings of a review were not forming themselves in my head, trying to burst out of my fingers before I could get them to my keyboard. Simply put, I had nothing.

Had I met my match? Was this one layoff too long?

I'm relieved to report, no. My son's fourth 5 a.m. wakeup call actually did me a favor, as I had the whole thing written before anyone else in my family even got up. Anyone else but him, that is.

And I'm rather proud of it, actually. It's here if you want to read it.

Now lest you think I'm suddenly into big-upping my own writing, really, I just wanted to get up another post so that I didn't start to stagnate here too. It's been since Saturday, which would be Friday in the U.S.

But it won't be another six weeks before I write my next review. Midnight Special is opening tomorrow, and I'm seeing it after work on Friday. Review to follow shortly thereafter.

If that one doesn't burst out of my fingers, well, I guess I'll have to hope for my son making it a week straight of serving as our personal rooster.

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