What To Watch Thursday: Gravity and Gangs of Wasseypur

What To Watch Thursday: Gravity and Gangs of Wasseypur

Oct 17, 2013 |  by  |  Art, Event
About the author
Born and raised in this amazing city, Steven (25) remembers quite vividly the first film that as a young boy got him addicted to cinema: The Neverending Story. And it really is a never-ending story, his grand film study has gone on ever since. Since then his taste has extended beyond such a fantasy coming-of-age film and will now guide you to what to see and what to skip.

What To Watch Thursday is Overdose’s weekly film injection: every Thursday we will tell you which cinematographic pearls can’t be missed! NB: It’s been a while since my last post and what better way to kick off the new season than with this horrible weather! I have two incredible films lined up this week.


Anticipation: Mexican director Alfonso Cuarón made a name for himself with the visually stunning, slightly controversial and very bleak film Children of Men (2006), where he collaborated with perhaps one of the greatest cinematographers of our time Emmanuel Lubezki (Tree of Life). A match made in heaven it seemed, but ever since, the wait was on. Gravity took a few years to make and had a production budget of about $100 million. Quite the gamble for a film with barely any story to it and only two real characters in it: two astronauts Dr. Ryan Stone (Sandra Bullock) and Lieutenant Matt Kowalski (George Clooney) floating in space as they are detached from a shuttle. But let me tell you Cuarón more than delivered here!

Appreciation: On paper this film is nothing like the blisteringly inventive sci-fi flick it turns out to be. It really is visually absolutely astounding cinema we are talking here. But honestly I don’t want get into it too much, since this one just has to be seen to be believed: guaranteed Academy Award winner this year.

Length: 90 min.

Verdict: ★★★★★ – A new milestone in the history of cinema: visually hands down the best film you’ll see all year.

Where to see: Watch this film in Pathé’s IMAX Arena (seriously, do it! It’s worth the extra money, you have two weeks left before it’s just regular 3D screenings for this one) and Pathé’s City, De Munt and Tuschinski. Also in Cineville’s The Movies.

Gangs of Wasseypur (I + II)

Anticipation: It’s sufficient to say that Bollywood and Indian cinema in general have a pretty bad name in European art house circuits. Unless it’s Danny Boyle directing –who staked his claim for British director of the moment with the horribly overrated Bollywood-inspired Slumdog Millionaire– you’ll probably never see most of the films from Indian soil. Recently fierce Indian film laws were relaxed a little and I suppose Gangs of Wasseypur is a result of that. Screened at Cannes it recieved nothing but great reviews, The Guardian named it “a possible turning point in Hindi cinema”.

Gangs of Wasseypur tells the story of an ongoing conflict between the families Khan and Singh. The film covers three generations against the shrill backdrop of post-colonial India. With Gangs, director Anurag Kashyap shows the new direction Indian cinema is taking: it is one hell of a ride, gritty, powerful and epic! Not to mention the amazing and inventive eclectic score. It has received various raving reviews, in which it has quite often been named the Indian equivalent of –not just because of its length of 320 minutes– The Godfather. But another striking resemblance comes to mind: of that other grand maffia film, Goodfellas. Notable for its musical and cinematographical style in which it comes quite close to that of the amazing Martin Scorsese. All in all, Gangs is a must-see modern masterpiece!

Special: Friday 18th there is a singular and special screening at Kriterion. Starting at 19:30, the evening will open with the screening of part one, followed by a half-hour break around 22:30 in which you can lean back with a drink and an Indian snack. Around 23:00 we’ll continue with part two, after which there’s plenty of time to have another drink and discuss this lengthy masterpiece. Definitely worth seeing back to back, but make sure to catch at least one part!

Length: Each part 160 min.

Verdict: ★★★★ – This is the coolest (Indian) thing you’ll see all year. Epic and violent: this is India’s homage to The Godfather.

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