Wednesday was a day of transitions – first-week guests left and second-week guests had not yet arrived, and the Filmhouse was like a ghost town as everyone took off to watch the World Cup.
Feeling listless after transcribing interviews for hours (lots to come, keep an eye out!), I caught the 5pm screening of Bored to Death.
The HBO showcase featured 3 back-to-back episodes of one of their newest and best shows. Adapted from a short novel from writer Jonathan Ames, it’s the story of a novelist, aptly named Jonathan Ames (Jason Schwartzman) who is struggling to write his second book. His girlfriend has just left him, so he turns to Craigslist, advertising himself as an unlicensed private investigator.
The charming series set in Brooklyn and Manhattan co-stars Zach Galiafinakis and Ted Danson, and just wrapped its second season which will screen this autumn in the US. After the screening, Mr Ames was present to field questions from the audience. He discussed his previous work as an author and teacher and his transition into television. A film based on his novel, The Extra Man, is also screening at the festival. Look out for it!
It was a quiet day from there on out – I caught up with a few groups of friends for a drink and then dinner, and tottered off home for a well-deserved early night.
Thursday was a little more eventful.
I began the morning with Ollie Kepler’s Expanding Purple World – a promising UK drama which the programme boasts as “Donnie Darko meets Billy Liar”. It’s a colourful film in which its protagonist, Ollie Kepler, is fascinated with star stuff. With beautiful colours and a strong first half-hour, it was a promising watch, but is a tough one to get through. Unfortunately it rather rambles through the middle, and loses track of its point as Ollie loses his marbles. Disappointing.
After work, I decided on a whim to catch a screening of the German picture My Words, My Lies – My Love, starring Daniel Brühl (Goodbye Lenin, Inglourious Basters) and acclaimed German actor Henry Hübchen. It’s a literary rom-com in which David (Brühl) goes from being a waiter to Germany’s biggest literary star – without ever writing a word.
Though slightly predictable, it was an enjoyable film with plenty of giggles and an excellent cast. Good, light-hearted entertainment. Swiss director Alain Gsponer gave a Q&A session in which he discussed working with the stars of the film, the novel Lila Lila on which the film is based, and seeking distribution outside of Switzerland.
In the evening, I attended Nick Cave’s Irregular event held at Roxy Art House. Hosted by Canongate publishing house, the evening featured some poetry readings from the host Celena – whose work is both hilarious and sexy; a reading from BED; a performance from an excellent up-and-coming band who are currently called The Sea The Sea; and readings from Nick Cave from his upcoming novel.
In association with EIFF, there were also screenings of 3 short films, including the hilarious award-winning The Archivist and a reading from Tilda Swinton. Not at all what I had anticipated, it was an unexpectedly excellent evening. There will be more Irregular events to come – I recommend you check one out.
As the festival begins to wind down, Day 10 (Friday) features Superhero Me and more that remains to be seen.