Mill Valley Film Festival 2012: “Beyond the Hills” and “Jayne Mansfield’s Car”

Beyond the Hills

Attention film enthusiasts, especially those of you who have 4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days positioned somewhere within the last decade’s top 20 films list, assuming of course that you are the type who enjoys list making every bit as much as I do.  Watching director/writer Cristian Mungiu‘s latest film while trying not to compare it to his previous full-length entity, may not be the easiest task you take on at Mill Valley, but trust me, not only can you do it, but the reward for doing so will hopefully be as good for you as it were for me.  Myself, having been introduced to Mungiu’s cinevoice with Beyond The Hills, didn’t have much trouble going into the film without jaded exppectations, and when all was said and done, to say I was anything less than flabbergasted would be a pin-point accurate assessment.

The story of two friends (ex-lovers?) trying to reconnect from their shared tough upbringing isn’t just plot fodder existing for the sake of good drama.  Nor are the many long takes, exceptional framing, lighting, and terrifying undertones that Compliance director Craig Zobel was trying to…. whoa, whoa, whoa.  Honestly, to elaborate any further, even though I barely scratched the surface of this slow burning tale of conviction gone awry, would only do a disservice to those who have not seen this yet.  Boy, are you in for a treat.

Jayne Mansfield’s Car

If Billy Bob Thornton were trying to make a movie to launch his new Lifetime For Men channel this would be it.  For the record, as far as I know there are no plans for a LFM channel.  Thank god for that at least.

This entire affair reeked of over dramatic and poorly directed performances all taking place within a whirlwind of never-ending after-school-esque generic musical cues.  I don’t ever want to see this many great actors (Billy Bob Thornton, Robert Duvall, John Hurt, Kevin Bacon, Shawnee Smith, Robert Patrick, Tippi Hedren) in a film this bad ever again, nor do I want to continue writing or thinking about this any more than I already have.

Showtimes for Beyond the Hills: Saturday, Oct. 6th – 11:45am (Sequoia 1)

Friday, Oct. 12th – 12:00pm (Rafael 1)

Showtimes for Jayne Mansfield’s Car: Sunday, Oct.7th – 7:00pm (Rafael 1)

Sunday, Oct. 14th – 5:00pm (Rafael 1)


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Categories: Reviews


  1. Jayne Mansfield – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia – PHOTOS – IMAGES- BIOGRAPHY « Netflowers – HOME - October 12, 2012

    […] Mill Valley Film Festival 2012: “Beyond the Hills” and “Jayne Mansfield’s Ca… ( […]

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