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Keeping Rosy [soilers]: after losing her job and taking it out on her cleaner, Charlotte goes from very successful businesswoman to a murderer – and worse – in a couple of days. This is a microbudget microdrama that’s impeccably shot (if you don’t mind relentlessly cold, grey, minimal / clinical visuals) but feels at home on your TV screen. There’s only a handful of actors in this, but none of them are given more depth than their borderline offensive off-the-shelf character sheet: cold career focused woman; rough northern girl; spying security guard; businessman that likes affairs… In saying that, the acting is solid for the most part. The film’s pitched as an ‘hitchcockian’ thriller, but ends up being a bit of a comedy by the end, with some large – and visible a mile away – twists and turns. My biggest problem is that the film asks you to feel sympathy and root for a cleaner-killing, child-abducting lead – who’s setup as a ‘bitch’ from the start. Keeping Rosy has promise, but feels very muddled with its messages and execution.

Score: 3.5/10

 

 

 

Senna: documentary on Ayrton Senna – a Brazilian F1 racing driver and superstar – from the late 1980s to his career-ending bender in 1994. Director Asif Kapadia misses a massive trick putting the emphasis on the Formula One seasons and not making more of the personality, background and life story of Senna – a great, highly watchable, person with a ton of charisma and charm to spare – it’s definitely more of a racing documentary than the biopic title would suggest. As the film pans out we see the trials and tribs of several seasons – focusing on the politics of F1 and the Senna/Prost rivalry – most of which is dramatic and juicy enough to keep a non F1 fan like me interested. There’s a couple of crashes that turn your stomach and the odd interview clip of Senna. An unfortunate aspect is that the picture quality is piss poor, being mostly lifted from VHS archive footage that becomes more tolerable towards the end as TV technology improved. While it’s a decent enough picture, i walked out feeling I didn’t know much more about Senna than when I went in, which was a bummer as he seemed a fascinating person.

Score: 6/10