Friday, 11 September 2009
Last night I attended Jason Wood's book launch at the Riverside Studios, where a brand-new, second edition of his book 100 AMERICAN INDEPENDENT FILMS was being promoted. A fantastic BFI pocket edition, it features 100 great indies and is essential reading for anyone interested in the subject.
Legendary filmmaker Nicolas Roeg (DON'T LOOK NOW, PERFORMANCE, THE MAN WHO FELL TO EARTH, WALKABOUT) was there and when the first film due to screen (SUTURE) was cancelled, I ended up having a few drinks with the director and his lovely wife Harriet.
Turns out Nicolas grew up in Brighton as a child, and has great childhood memories before his parents moved to London. He's a humble, friendly guy whose personality doesn't match the superb, epic catalogue of films he's created. We talked films (he loved INGLOURIOUS BASTERDS) and technology (he loves YouTube) and memories (he shot a film with Joan Collins at the Riverside Studios in the 50s).
If only the screening of THE GIRLFRIEND EXPERIENCE had been as memorable. The new Soderbergh is flat - unsexy, boring and a tad pretentious.
It's a rare thing that you get to have a fun, relaxed and informal conversation with someone you admire so much. I've raved about Roeg's films for many years and I think he's due a revival - certainly most of his work is timeless and features some of the most striking cinematography ever committed to film. It's up to the chaps at the BFI to get a retrospective going.