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September 2008

Straighten Up and Fly Right

Save Me (2008)

First Run Features

Shot poorly and infused with too much melodrama, “Save Me” largely resembles one of those reductive message movies better served on Lifetime than the big screen. Badly acted, summarily unconvincing and filled with genuinely creepy characters, watching the picture often becomes an ungainly chore. Still, within the absurd milieu, director Robert Cary and the film’s three screenwriters pursue a thread of thematic honesty that keeps the picture functional, although it never avoids seeming very amateurish.

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Dispatches From the Capital of Sorrow

My Winnipeg (2008)

Jody Shapiro/IFC Films

The official story is that “My Winnipeg” is Guy Maddin's first documentary, commissioned by the Documentary Channel as a portrait of the director's hometown and a memoir of his childhood roots. Straight-faced press releases describe Mr. Maddin's qualms that the exacting demands of discipline and patience in the documentary form had put him off tackling one until now. Not for the first time, Mr. Maddin is having you on.

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