The first clue that What If, the
new film from Michael Dowse, might be a subtle veering off course from
the typical journey can be found in the performance of Daniel Radcliffe
as Wallace, the lovelorn chap at the center of things.
Karpov (Grigoriy Dobrygin), a Chechen Muslim, enters Hamburg, Germany
illegally, weaving his way through sewers, stowing away on a cargo ship, hiding
in plain sight beneath a dirty hooded sweatshirt and a scraggly beard.
Throughout his circuitous journey, though, Issa makes time to pray.
Boyhood, as you've probably already heard, is a
different kind movie. Shot over the course of 12 years with the same
cast, filmmaker Richard Linklater's perceptive ode to family and the
life of one specific boy (played by newcomer Ellar Coltrane) from age 6
to 18 is also about the simple passage of time...
For fans of the current wave of independent filmmaking,
there’s a certain romantic curiosity surrounding the power-trio of Brit
Marling, Zal Batmanglij and Mike Cahill. Marling holds the center,
anchoring and serving as the face of the trio’s projects together.
There’s something fitting in the work of Zach Braff — the star of successful television comedy series Scrubs,
which sang, danced, and laughed its way through the madcap years of med
school residency for its hapless trio of would-be doctors — because
Braff, settling in at the helm of his second feature film, has a
not-exactly morbid curiosity with life and death.
Instead of starting off with questions
about what I learned about international film culture from attending the
Munich Film Festival, it would be far more instructive to kick off with
a discussion about what the experience made me think about in terms of
what it means to be modern.
Earth to Echo wastes no time
setting up its premise. Three young teens — Alex (Teo Halm), Tuck
(Astro) and Munch (Reese Hartwig) — as awkwardly nerdy as can be, land
themselves in the middle of quite an adventure when they begin
investigating cell phone disturbances in their soon-to-be redeveloped
community in Nevada.