Monday, 1 August 2016

Versus: The Life and Films of Ken Loach

Just fresh from a screening of the 2016 documentary Versus: The Life and Films of Ken Loach, which I thought was superb and a very useful primer for someone like myself who has always approached Loach's films with a sense of trepidation, to the point of keeping them at arm's length. For a film maker who has made a career out of telling harsh even angry stores (which it must be said, needed to be told), Ken Loach himself comes across as very nice man, soft spoken, gentle, and I found it particularly moving when Loach discussed the death of his five-year old son in a car accident. That quiet disposition is tempered somewhat though by Gabriel Byrne's sly comment that you crossed Loach at your peril.

Nice to see clips from Kes again, and I must see Hidden Agenda, and make some inquiries about the 6-disc Ken Loach at the BBC collection. One complaint about this otherwise excellent documentary, was the scope framing which necessitated the film clips (which I presume were filmed in more modest ratios) to appear re-framed to the point of ugliness - a bizarre stylistic choice on the behalf of the producers. And one minor quibble right at the end of the documentary, when Alan Parker compares Loach to Marlon Brando in Rebel Without A Cause - a mistake that goes uncorrected. I actually sat thru the credits expecting to see an outtake of Parker correcting himself but not so. Surely Parker could have been offered a second take ?

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