The film that impressed me the most at MIFF this year was The day will come (Es kommt der Tag, 2009), an intense drama about a young woman in search of the mother who abandoned her as a child. The problem is the mother has been in hiding ever since as she’s a former member of a 1970s terrorist group.
Air doll (Kûki ningyô, 2009) is a surreal Pinocchio style story about an inflatable sex doll who comes to life. I thought it may be rather fetishistic and creepy, but it was unexpectedly light and charming until the inevitable Japanese weirdness set in and the sweet naive doll became an accidental murderer.
The kids are all right (2010) is a delightful family comedy drama about a lesbian couple whose teenage children go in search of their biological father with unexpected consequences. The cast are all fantastic and the combination of characters is most amusing.
Splice (2009) is a science fiction action thriller that, like Gattaca and The island, is concerned with the rapid advances in genetic science and its ethical implications. Adrien Brody’s emo hair is ridiculous, but if you can ignore that then this is a very cool film.
Radiant child (2010) is a documentary about the American artist Jean-Michel Basquiat. I first became fascinated with his art when I saw one of his works, Andy Warhol’s jacket that he had painted, at a Warhol exhibition in the 1990s. This film examines his art and life and gives an insight into the 1980s art scene with vision of Basquiat with contemporaries like Warhol, Julian Schnabel and Keith Haring. If you’ve seen the astonishing biopic Basquiat (1996, made by Schnabel) and want to know more this film is extremely rewarding.