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Hello, and welcome to Best Film. We're live, and if you want to get
in touch, the details are on the screen. Coming up on tonight's
show: There's trouble in paradise as
George Clooney struggles with family tragedy in The Descendants.
Who is he? I would like to know who the guy is my wife was seeing.
Worthington goes all out as Man On A Ledge as an escaped convict who
will do anything to prove his innocence. Today is the day, and
everything changes. And going the distance - Felicity
Jones and Anton Yelchin play tragic lovers in Like Crazy. I am going to
stay. You can't do that. Why? visa.
We asked Danny to chat to David Cronenberg. Descendants stars
George Clooney trying to raise two daughters after a father involved
in a serious accident. 23 days ago my wife was launched from a power
boat and hit her head. If this weren't enough... You might not be
ready to hear this now, but she was lonely. Who is he? I would like to
know who the guy is my wife was - seeing. What I liked about it is
this man who has been cuckolded decides to go find his wife's lover
and tell him she's going to die even though he wants to murder the
guy. I liked that. Does he love him? Drop it, dad. You
have way bigger fish to fry than confronting some guy. It's this
awesome story of a family who is very dysfunctional and disconnected
through very tragic circumstances are forced to become a family again
and functional and open up communication in their household.
Get out of my underwear, you freak. Back inside. Put on a swimsuit.
Why? Now. A real good job you're doing. That's part of why I brought
you here. You have to help me with her. I don't know what to do with
her. He has been asked this question - what's it like for you,
this bachelor, to play a father and all that? He says he's played a
father before - in One Fine Day. I have never seen it. I can't say
what he's done in this film is different than what he's done in
his other films. I haven't seen all his other films. I know looking at
him as an actor because I sense inside of him a full human being.
My friends think just because I love in Hawaii I live in paradice.
Are they insane? Our families are just as screwed up. Our heartaches
are just as painful. You can make a good film -- you can't make a good
film out of a bad script. The director I had wanted to work with
a long time. I thought I was going to do it no matter what the script
is because quite honestly I haven't seen him miss yet as a film-maker.
One thing you feel in Hawaii is you feel your own punyness against the
vividness and grandeur and force of nature. That's what I wanted to get
across. I have really sort of tried to focus on the best screenplay as
possible, and the second thing I tried to do is make sure the
directors I am working with, we're on the same page and want to do the
same kind of films. You can protect yourself as an actor if you work
with really good people. It can hide a lot of flaws along the way.
The film starts out with quite bannal shots of street life in
Honolulu. By the end you have mountains and skies and more grand
shots. Those are visual references to something going on inside of the
man, inside of George Clooney's character. We're going to make it
out OK - you and Scottie and me. Hello. Hello to you. What did you
think? Alexander Payne has made a series of good films - that kind of
crotchety middle-aged man. You would think it might be more of the
same, but it springs a few surprises on you - it's more comfy
and cuddly than that it's a snugly blanket of a film. I would say it's
a chick flick in Y fronts. I don't mean that as a criticism. There is
a lot I like about the film. It's often very funny. I think George
Clooney is superb, you know? I think he's great as pinning down
his character. He's flailing around, doesn't know what direction he's
going in. He's even transformed himself physically, put on a few
years. He doesn't look movie star handsome anymore. He's bland. That
brings me to the problem I have with the film - the blandness. It's
a little bit too neat, a little bit too pleased with itself. I think if
you're after true emotional drama, you would be better off watching
people go and shoe shop, to be honest. The film is being sold as
it will make you laugh. It will make you cry. It will make you
laugh,definitely, but if it makes you cry, a pregnancy test might be
advisable - don't look at any puppies. Can't be pregnant again,
can I? Fair enough. I'll tell you just this - you and I can say what
you want, but my mum and her best friends - hello, girls, have
already booked Man On A Ledge... Can I go? She'll eat you alive.
George Clooney as a family man, they love it. There is a massive
buzz about this film. We don't have a long time to talk about the Oscar
nomination, but it was all about The Descendants against The Artists.
It was about right. It was. George Clooney sat on the sofa talking
about running - a brilliant shot of him running, then, of course, Tom
Cruise, Mission Impossible, tiny, like a toddler - then there is a
brilliant scene in this which George Clooney does brilliantly - I
promise you Dr Shoals up a hill, a flapping, panting run - I don't
know why I want to mention it, but it's a good scene. I think it's an
adorable film. Sunday, 5.00pm, you're going to be delighted.
a perfectly good feel-good movie. By the time he's thrown his
daughters in the car and gone on a trip, you are thinking, it's Little
Miss Sunshine. I just think that Alexander Payne thinks it's more
high flat outing than that. The film is essentially Warhorse. I
don't have a problem with that. loved that movie. What he's done
with Sideways, with Election - he's made great films about really
unpleasing characters who you get to know. Here, Matt King, George
Clooney's character, he's such a nice guy to start with. I can't
help but think that's cheating. It has a lot to recommend it. Next A
Man On A Ledge, a thriller starring Sam Worthington and Jamie Bell.
Breaking news - the eyes of the city are riveted - 20 storeys up on
the man on the ledge. Any person who stands on a ledge 200 feet in
the air, you think they're obviously going to commit suicide.
It attracts so much attention. By doing that, he can bring attention
to the real reason he's there. guy who stole the diamond? A $40
million diamond I knew I recognised this mutt. What the hell is going
on? What did his note say? I'll exit as I entered. He wants people
to think he doesn't do it. Has he lost his mind? That twice of the
set-up makes you second-guess his motivations in what he's actually
doing. Is there a bomb? You asked for my trust - and then this.
This is the moment you make your choice, remember? He steps out on a
ledge and makes it feel real and shoot it in a way that's never been
seen before - I think is a crazy ordeal, and the scope of that, the
scope of how it's shot I think is sort of mind-blowing. You go out on
a ledge, and for 200 feet up, for the first couple of days up there,
your experiences are real. The fear doesn't go away, and I don't really
like heights myself. You just kind of tap into it, and it helps the
scenes roll. I don't know how Sam did as many hours as he did out
there. I know after a certain point, you probably get a little bit more
comfortable, but I don't think you can ever be totally comfortable,
given that you're 262626 storeys up in the air - granted, you're
strapped in, but leaning over - it - you know, it is still terrifying.
He's probably someone who is not serious about going over. Now it's
a question of, does he want attention? What's going on? We come
to find out, he's on the ledge to cover up a massive heist he's
running across the street. Nick, you see me? OK, Joey, you know what
to do. Don't worry. Everyone is looking at me. I think this film
falls into the realm of entertainment. I don't think it's
about anything earth shattering. It's not trying to teach some big,
huge moral lesson. Everybody is pulling for you, kid! It's about an
exciting story that hopefully keeps people on the edge of their seat.
The guy's on the edge of a building. Hopefully people stay on the edge
of their seats. Today is the day everything changes - one way or
It's absolutely amazing - I wanted to use the word "masterpiece"...
don't think you should use that word. No, no, no. It's obviously
absolutely terrible, but in a brilliant way. I cannot recommend
it enough. I just need to show you a still shot. This is Jennifer
Lawrence -- genesis Rodriguez - there we go. She's gone to steal a
diamond - who - she's wearing a pink push-up bra and a pink earring.
The whole thing is breathtaking... I don't have any problem...
course you don't have any problem - but what's going for it is it's a
pleasurable watch. You and I watched it together. We hooted. We
whooped. At one time somebody turned to us and said "He has very
honest eyes". You sort of don't know which way it's going. If you
know a 15-year-old boy and take them to see this, you'll be
brilliant. I only whooped to make you feel better. Here, the opening
scene, you've got a man. You have a ledge. The man looks at the ledge,
climbs out the window, the man stands on the ledge - an overweight
New York cop - what situation do we have here? We have a man on a ledge.
He's not making this up. It's helpful, informative and useful
because the script does take its time explaining why he's up there -
I think it's supposed to be suspenseful. I found it confusing -
Dog Day Afternoon - which is a piece of cheek - is it like that? I
think it reminds me more of the Joel Schumacher film Phone Booth.
Is it like that? No. OJ Simpson's scriptwriter - a touch of class. I
think my favourite line is when a character is told, "You have to be
careful, one of these days you're going to get your - BLEEP - stuck
in a door." I think, that's not likely. Tell that to fas bender -
no, it's an extraordinary film. haven't even talked about Sam
Worthington. It's another great thing about the script because we
have a male lead who can't deal with one syllable at a time. He
cocks his ear the whole time like a little dog. Augie from The Artist
is this year's big star. I think he may have some competition. You must
see it, then call me. Man On a Ledge is on nationwide release from
Friday, 3rd February. Now it's time for the top five. This week
Catherine counts down her favourite Families - you can't live with them.
You can't legally maroon them on an island somewhere, but they do make
for some fantastic cinema as we're about to see in these top five.
number five, they're creepy and they're kooky, it's The Adams
family. More Tischia and Gomez fancy the pants off each other. The
whole family attend charity events together, and the kids play
contendedly on an electric chair. Children, what are you doing?
going to electrocute him. But we're late for the charity auction.
They are pretty sweet bunch. But we can only imagine how offended they
would be that -- by that! The Texas chainsaw Massacre. Murderers
cannibals they may be. But at least the horrific leather faced clan
make the time to sit down together for a nice family meal. But even
for a family of cannibals, their table manners leave a lot to be
desired. He ties their dinner party guest to the chair anyway? At least
the younger family members put fresh meat on the table for their
At number three is The Royal Tenenbaums. The Royal Tenenbaums
are one big messed-up brood. Coming from Wes Anderson, you probably
wouldn't expect anything different. Now cough up. It is kind of hard to
pick who is the most eccentric of this bunch. But it's probably
patriarch Royal, and his shameless bid for the sympathy vote back-up.
I'm dying. I'm sick as a dog. I'll What are you talking about? Where
is the doctor? Wait a second. Listen, I'm not dying. But I need
some time. A month or so, OK? I want us to... What wrong with you?!
At number two, Chinatown. It is only after a long and tangled
investigation that Private Eye, played by a rarely bettered Jack
Nicholson, discovers the dark secret at the heart of Roman
Polanski's contribution. I'll tell you the truth. Good, what's her
name? Catherine. Catherine who? She's my daughter. I said I want
the truth. For she's my sister. She's my daughter. My sister, my
daughter. I said I want the truth! She's my sister and my daughter.
doesn't get more dysfunctional than inter-generational incest. At
number one, it is Psycho. She's just a stranger, or she's hungry
and it's raining out. As if men don't desire strangers. And Alfred
Hitchcock's all-time classic, neither Norman Bates nor his dear
old mum are exactly pictures of sanity. But his mother's spiky
speculation about Norman's sex like that really pushes his buttons. But
in the end nothing gets in the way of a son's love for his mother.
Don't you touch me, don't! The even if she's been dead for years! Put
me down. Absolutely brilliant. We've had hundreds of tweets, I've
got to read some out. The kids are all right. Somebody else says the
Skywalkers in Star Wars. Home alone, we've had a lot for that. Joel says,
if the family in we need to talk about Kevin isn't dysfunctional, I
don't know who is. Next, Like Crazy. A story of first love story and
Felicity Jones and Anton Yelchin. What are we going to do after we
graduate? Don't think about it. Like Crazy is about two young
people who meet when they are at college and on 19 years old. I play
Anna. She is from England. She falls madly in love with a young
American student called Jacob. Jacob, I've made a decision. I'm
going to stay. I'm going to stay for the summer and then I'll just
go back for the wedding and then I'll come back after that. As much
as I'd like that, you can't do that? Why? They fall deeply, madly,
passionately in love it. Then and I get deported and isn't allowed back
in the country because she overstates her visa. The place you
on the plane immediately and you return back to the UK. I think what
makes it irresistible is everyone has been through it. Everyone has
loved somebody. Everyone has made decisions about whether -- without
knowing whether it was the right thing to do or not but they did it
because they loved somebody. Hello? Do you want to come over? Come over
now. I will just be here. Yeah. style and the way the film was shot,
it's very documentary in its field. Drake said it was shot as though
every scene was a sex scene because when you are shooting a more
conventional film, when you do the sex scene everyone has taken off
the set. It is with that intensity we made every film -- seen in this
film. Don't be embarrassed... You are being grown-up, you are being
adults? Yes. I think it is a story of fighting to get over somebody
you can't get over. What it is like to go through the experience of
debilitating your ability to move on. I thought I understood it but I
didn't. Only the smudge of it. The If The Descendants is a chick lit
for middle-aged men, Like Crazy is a week before hipsters. There's a
lot I like here, the performances of the leaves are fantastic. When
they are falling in love, it's a film about young love and falling
in love, it's great, Swede and touching. It feels very real. It
almost bears comparison to things like before sunrise and weekend.
They captured perfectly those moments of falling for someone. But
they very much are contained, those two movies, in that moment. The
thing about Like Crazy is in the relationship they are forced to
live apart. The film follows them over months and years. That is not
great for the relationship. I also think it isn't that great for the
film. One of the problems is the device which keeps them apart, the
immigration and the visa, the mistake they make, and I know they
are both supposed to be young but neither of them have sustained a
recent head injury. You lose a lot of sympathy for them. When they are
kept apart I understand that he is in a state and she is in London.
But it's not like she is up a tree in Papua New Guinea. They could
I thought it was a beautiful film. I think Felicity Jones is brilliant.
You could watch her for hours. He is also fabulous. Their love is
palpable. That scene when they are just touching each other, although
not, through glass, I found it incredibly moving. I loved Jennifer
Lawrence in it. She is not in it enough. What was interesting about
her character, almost at the end you feel you don't know whether
they should be together boast a maybe he is better suited to her. I
think you think about whether love becomes a habit. I thought it was
lovely. I'd quite like him to have made something other than just a
chair. There are things I like about it but I disagree about
Jennifer Lawrence. I think she should have been in it more. It is
the director cheating. It is the same with Felicity Jones, this
unsuitable British guy she cooks up with, you don't want them to be
together. You want Felicite Jones and Anton to get together. You may
be right, I may be better. The weird thing about this film is it
is six months after they leave university. He's running this
incredibly successful furniture design company, despite the fact
that he can only design one chair. She is editing Vogue or something.
Six months after university I was working in a video shop in Soho.
David Cronenberg has been making feature films for over 40 years.
This is his 19 feature, A Dangerous Method. Danny went to meet him.
Male. Family. Child. Divorce. Professor Freud. I simply opened
the door. It's for the young man like yourself to walk through it.
Perhaps she's the one for experimental treatment. Tell me the
first time you were beaten by your father. It excited me. Having made
A Dangerous Method, I'm wondering what sort of relationship you think
there might be between making films and being a psychoanalyst. There's
a lot in common. There's an accepted version of an official
reality that we are presented with. Then we have the desire to not
accept that as the full reality, to dive underneath that and find out
what is going on under it. I think there's quite a parallel in terms
of what we feel our functions. should we put so much effort into
suppressing our most basic natural instincts? Never repress anything.
I want you to punish me. There seemed to be echoes of your earlier
films scattered around. Are you conjures of those when you are
making a film? I just address what the film was. It tells me what it
once and I give it what it wants. That means not imposing some
preconceived idea of what is Cronenberg or not. You have fans, I
have fans of my early horror films who wish I would make those movies
again. I can't give them that again. If they are really interested in my
work there have to follow me where I go. If not, it's fine. People
sometimes confuse all seemed to confuse the films with your
personality. Is that something you still experience? Yet, even Martin
Scorsese famously said to me that he was afraid to meet me after my
first couple of films. I said, but you made taxi driver. I'm afraid to
The flies seemed to be the movie which broke out and made you a very
commercial prospect. -- the five. How was that? I thought it was
possible that by accident what I do and what the mainstream once will
converge. It will be by accident, though. It happened relatively
early with The Fly in 1986. How are you doing? You tell me. Am I
different somehow? It is still my most successful film. I've never
And then moving into Dead Ringers, at that point there was such a
degree of attention around you. Dead Ringers seemed like a
deliciously perverse film to make. I've been around a bit and I
thought I'd seen some creepy things go on in the movie business but I
really have to say that this is the most disgusting thing that's ever
happened to me. I doubt that. is it with you? You can't get it up
unless your brother is watching? This was a bad idea. It was a movie
which took me 10 years to make. All the classic Hollywood things
happened. You'd be sitting in a room with an executive and he'd say,
OK, you've got the story about twin gynaecologists. Couldn't they be
lawyers? They both die at the end, could and one of them survive? The
answer to that was no. Then there answer to you was, then no to you,
too. We are not going to make this movie. I'm afraid I'm not familiar
with these instruments, Dr. I've just had them made. They are brand
new. No. Them one at a time. Give me the one that I asked for. Around
that time when Hollywood was knocking on the door, there is a
whole series of films that were almost David Cronenberg movies but
didn't quite happen. Flashmanned is famously one of them. Top gun. Do
you see any of those films as missed opportunities? Not at all. I
just felt that I was not the Best Director for those movies. And
probably abide done/dance it would not have been a success. We are
sitting in Soho in London, I think that has a particular resonance
because it was Westminster council who famously banned your film,
Crash. That is correct. What was that like to experience at the
time? The response to the film in England was amazing, amazingly
horrible. But car crash is a fertilising rather than destructive
event. A liberation of sexual energy. Mediating the sexuality of
those who have died with an intensity that is impossible in any
other form. To experience that, to live that. That is my project.
have it banned, you feel that very ignorant people have too much power
and really are doing it for absolutely the wrong reasons and
don't understand your movie, in fact they probably haven't seen the
movie. Therefore it brings home the hideousness of censorship. On the
other hand, it kind of pleases you because it means that you have not
yet achieved a status as a boring director. 36 years ago there were
questions being asked in the Canadian Parliament about your
moral fibre. Now you are travelling the world and almost being classed
as an elder statesman. Does bat fruit you out? No, I'm amused. It's
good to have a lot of medals and awards, so that when they come to
arrest you you can show them to them and say you can't arrest me! I
actually still think of it that way. Thank you very much.
You can see more from that interview with David Cronenberg on
the website. We will be reviewing A Dangerous Method in three weeks'
time. Next is Bombay Beach, a documentary said in one of the
poorest communities in southern You're fighting on the bus, and you
threw a rock at another child. Remember that? You hit her in the
head and made her bleed. Was it her? I thought it was William
because his head was bleeding. There was more than one. There was
three, actually. I know this one. This thing is
for... Yeah. This one is Ritalin. What this one does is - you know
when you run around a lot and you can't stop moving and you're very
hyper? This is supposed to make you where you don't do that. It calms
you down. Is that new, mom? that's not new. He has been taking
that for almost two years. And this one is for... Am I crazy?
you're not crazy. Don't ever think # I was thinking of a series of
dreams # When nothing comes up to the town
# Everything stays down where it's This is the most extraordinary
documentary, and if you'd told me before - because all the films on
different levels - are very strong this week. This absolutely blew me
away. The creator of this extraordinary documentary, which
has got a fantastic sound track from Bob Dylan and Beirut - it
centres on these three characters in this very impoverished community
- it's not condescending. There is no self-pity. They're all strong,
brilliant characters. There is Bennie, the little boy, but Red,
this older guy, is fantastic. And while you get a snapshot of their
lives, you also get these choreographed imagination sequences
like we saw with the boy and the fire engine. It is most powerful -
you'll sit there and go ah, and it will just whack you in the face. It
was extraordinary. I agree. The Salton Sea where Bombay Beach is
set in is amazing. It's an inland sea in California during the '50s -
it was a huge tourist resort. It died. Now it's a wasteland really.
It's full of abandoned buildings and cars. You could make an hour-
and-a-half full of just that footage. The director is much more
interested in the community. There are 300 people in the community.
She's picked three who live there. The story it tells is amazing. With
a documentary, the best work is often done off camera because it's
about building thees relationships with the people so they can go and
be themselves if front of the camera. She does that brilliantly.
You're right. The dance routines and dance sequences is such a brave
thing to do. It sounds odd. sounds kind of crass and silly, but
actually it works brilliantly because you hear the people
speaking. You get inside their live, then you also get inside their
imaginations. The dream sequences is how they want to present
themselves. I would recommend this movie to anyone - it's so
interesting. I know it's a small niche film, but your mum and Joyce,
Bombay Beach, why not? Yeah, the Descendants and then Bombay Beach.
What's your film of the week? Bombay Beach. That's my film of the
week for the rest of the series taken care of. You? Bombay Beach I
think, but you'll love Like Crazy, A Man On A Ledge - if you're 15,
you'll love it. Now it's the Director of Four Weddings and a
Funeral - the brilliant Richard Curtis.
At the moment, I find I would watch 500 Days of Summer quite regularly.
It's just so delightfully constructed. I find it very hard to
watch a film again and again if it's just one narrative cut, but
that film just has an extraordinary thing of flicking backwards and
forwards through these events, and every single scene is fun and
delightful. There is a fabulous completely unexpected dance number
to a Hall and Oats track. # Twist and shout
# Went out # And wrap yourself around me #
And then there's a fantastic scene at the end of the movie where you
see how he's hoping a night will go and how the night actually goes,
and it's so like real life that we set up all of these expectations of
the little flickers of a relationship, and many of the times
the two are the same, and then suddenly they jog out of sync when
he realises that she doesn't care about him at all. Nice.
Your tie... Hi. How are you doing? Good. How are you? Good.
# It's all right # It's all right #
The sequence of Woody Allen films - sort of the fall from Annie Hall,
Manhattan, Hannah and her Sisters, Crimes and Misdemeanors - that's
the most perfect curve for me as a director, and I never stop finding
Woody Allen funny. One crawled behind the refrigerator. The thing
about Annie Hall is every sketch is either funny or funny and
profoundly meaningful about human relationships. He found this way of
telling big truths through jokes, so the famous scene in which what
he's saying is interpreted by something completely different in
subtitles is just all our lives. Did you do those photographs in
there or what? Yeah. Yeah. I sort of dabble around, you know? They're
wonderful, you know? They have a quality. Well, I would like to take
a serious photography course. Photography is interesting because
it's a new art form and a set of aesthetic criteria haven't emerged
yet. Breaking Away is a really great cluster of incredibly well-
characterised friends. There are four different friends, completely
different, completely clear, and very funny together. It was
somewhere right along here that I lost all interest in life. It's a
real three-layered film and shot in a very kind of odd, relaxed, almost
documentary way. Even if a bicycling film seems an odd thing
to watch, this is the great bicycling film.
MUSIC This talk of Guilty Pleasures,
they're never really guilty, never things people are guilty about,
whereas my guilty pleasure is genuinely guilty in that between
the age of 18 and 22, my favourite films were definitely Emanuel 1, 2
and 3. I have something to tell you. It's not easy to say. The second
person I'd really fallen in love with in a hard-core way in the
movies was Sylvia Crystal, in the first, then Julie Andrews some
they're different levels of style and dress. I have never heard her
voice. That's something that really worries me. All I have heard is
this incredibly naff voice-over important thing - to have orgasms -
frequently. The best guilty pleasure ever. Isn't it? That's
brilliant. I couldn't believe it. That's all for tonight. In next
week's show we'll be reviewing Carnage; Martha, Marcy, May,
Marlene; Chronicle and Young Adult. Playing us out tonight, we
celebrate the 21st Anniversary of Thelma and Lousie. Thank you for
watching. Open the trunk. Want to step into the trunk, please?
Please! I have a wife and kids. Please don't. You do? Well, you're
lucky. You be sweet to them, especially your wife. My husband
wasn't sweet to me. Look how I turned out. Go on. Get in there.
Wait a sec. Excuse me. Wait a minute. Officer, could I have your
belt, please? Extra ammo. Good idea. Could I trade that with you maybe?