It has been 18 years since I was last associated with a Hollywood movie—I had a very minor credit on Pumpkinhead II, starring the amazingly talented presidential brother Roger Clinton as “The Mayor”—and this week, at the Venice Film Festival, felt like a walk back in time. In addition to covering the festival for The Observer, I was there to see off my small investment in an independent movie called Kiss of the Damned, which was closing the festival.
Venice is like a smaller Cannes: lots of premieres, stars and glamour, but without the large scale-madness of its French counterpart. Medium-sized commercial movies play alongside smaller, niche pictures. Harmony Korine’s Spring Breakers, Robert Redford’s The Company you Keep and Brian De Palma’s The Passion all premiered, as did a retrospective of Michael Cimino’s Heaven’s Gate.
My only criticism of the Venice Film Festival is that it’s hard to motivate oneself to go to these movies during the day, when you have a combination of perfect weather, one of the world’s most beautiful cities and whatever residual bleariness from covering all those late-night parties. Read More