The Festival staff compensated for the Dreams of Dust cancellation with a substitute ticket for the gay British thriller Surveillance on Tuesday night, so that will be my last screening appointment until the big Savages finale on Wednesday. Further and greater compensations have been furnished by the films I have actually seen, both within the Festival program and among the concurrent multiplex releases that I have squeezed in between commitments. I hope you've enjoyed the reviews so far, and I promise to keep turning them out, for Michael Clayton and Yella, two suspenseful dramas from the world of work, with more similarities than they superficially admit; for 4 Months, 3 Weeks, and 2 Days, the Romanian Palme d'Or winner that's every bit as galvanizing as you've already read elsewhere; for Taxi to the Dark Side, one of the year's most urgent and best-assembled documentaries; for Catherine Breillat's The Last Mistress, one of the program's few outright misfires, and not as interesting a misfire as one might rightfully expect from Breillat; for the engagingly sweet if undeniably thin Lars and the Real Girl; and for James Gray's We Own the Night, a Sony/Columbia release that mostly got drubbed at last spring's Cannes Film Festival. The short report, timed for its debut in wide release today, is that I loved We Own the Night, with its crystal-clear and classical form, its superb sound design, and its canny positioning of all the scenes you saw in the trailer into stages of the narrative where you won't expect them. Go out and catch itgive the movie that opening-weekend boost that it needsand check back here in the next few days for a fuller tribute.
(And for all you dear souls who wrote earlier this week with birthday wishesGod bless you every one! Personal replies forthcoming when this delicious madness subsides...)