Sitges 2009: Final two days (aka Zombies!)

October 14, 2009 at 3:06 pm (Festivals, Movies, Reviews, Sitges)

Last couple of days in Sitges were hectic. I had no time to write pretty much anything – hence the lack of reports and this extremely short post. Saturday was Zombie Day, and that meant almost 10 feature films with zombies, plus the worldwide famous Zombie Walk – another huge success, almost 4.000 fans dressing up as zombies and roaming the streets of Sitges. The start of the walk was given by the Zombieland cast, meaning Jesse Einsberg, Emma Stone, Abigail Breslin, and director Reuben Fleischer. All four of them also had a press conference at noon that I attended and that I’ll be posting shortly.

In terms of movies – I’ve seen another four: a good-looking but somewhat shallow drama (Accidents Happen), a good and tensed French zombie flick (La horde), a very bad attempt at another British zombie comedy that failed miserably on all levels (Doghouse), and a superbly fresh and inventive zombie comedy that’s totally worth all the hype and top 150 all-time rank on imdb (Zombieland).

Sunday started with the Viggo Mortensen press conference – useless, cause the man speaks fluent Spanish so – again – there was no English translation. At least director John Hillcoat spoke English. Then the award winners were announced – you can check it out here – and, to my total joy, two of my fave movies received the main awards, Moon and Enter the Void.

In terms of movies, I started with the Scandinavian thriller Millennium 2, that was surprisingly average. Maybe the biggest disappointment of the festival was The Immaginarium of Dr. Parnassus, which is a good movie. However I was expecting awesomeness, and, except for some breathtaking scenes, didn’t get any. The film looks terrific, but that’s it. I found the story surprisingly weak.

Last film of the festival was also one of its best. John Hillcoat’s The Road is cinema at its finest. It’s a very bleak and dark drama about a father and his son roaming the American wasteland after the world as we know it ended. Very faithful to the source material (Pullitzer winner Cormac McCarthy’s outstanding novel), the film is exactly as it’s supposed to be, and – Thank God – plays exactly as it should, without choosing the easy way of emphasizing the action, but playing as a character drama in a beautifully dark post-apocalyptic world. The acting is top notch from both main protagonists, while some of the scenes are nothing less than memorable.

In this report: Accidents Happen 6/10, La horde 7/10, Doghouse 3/10, Zombieland 9/10, Millennium 2 5/10, The Imaginarium of Dr. Parnassus 7/10, The Road 10/10.

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