Halloween approaches and the Denver Film Festival rolls on, just another October in Colorado.
First, seven shorts and a feature to watch this week at DFF:
Shorts 1: Narrative collection — seven shorts, all of them good, three of them great: Lance (In a Neck Brace), the story of a young man trying to get over a failed relationship with the assistance of an audiobook; White Eye, a stolen bicycle reveals a world broken by intolerance; and Exam, a sister becomes her brother’s drug mule. Looking to get the most bang for your festival buck? Start here.Boulder Weekly Vol. 28, No. 11, “Seven shorts and a feature“
Moving now to feature-length fare, Undine — the latest from German filmmaker Christian Petzold — is a curious little mystery about one woman, two men and a whole lot of water.Derived from the Latin word for wave, unda, Undine is a water nymph in European mythology, which ought to clue you in to what kind of character Undine (played by Paula Beer) is. She’s a historian by trade — the city of Berlin is her métier — and she’s in love with two men: Johannes (Jacob Matschenz), who we learn little about, and Christoph (Franz Rogowski), a diver who maintains a dam turbine in the mountains outside of Berlin.
But it’s Halloween this Saturday, shouldn’t we watch something on the scary side? You better believe it. How about 1978’s Invasion of the Body Snatchers?
Released in 1978, Invasion of the Body Snatchers was the second time Hollywood adapted Jack Finney’s 1955 novel. The previous incarnation — released in 1956 and directed by Don Siegel — was a Cold War classic. Most saw the emotionless dupes as an allegory for communism, though a few wondered if the criticism was pointed in the wrong direction. Might these mind-numbed masses stand-in for McCarthy-era groupthink?Home Viewing: ‘Invasion of the Body Snatchers’
That fear takes a much deeper root in the 1978 version, directed by Philip Kaufman from a screenplay by W. D. Richter. In this version, the presence of a surveillance state only adds to the willies. Blank faces watch Matthew and Elizabeth’s every move, compromised government officials are always one step ahead, and no one knows who’s been duped and who hasn’t until it’s too late.