RR Films: Work

I was tempted go go with ‘Happiness’ as this week’s topic, as yesterday was the United Nations’ International Day of Happiness, but I couldn’t bring too many films to mind*. Instead, as more stories surface of restaurants not paying the minimum wage and self-employed drivers being charged for being unable to work, this week I’m looking for films set in and around the workplace.

Compliance was my first thought – and the tyranny of fast food management is still very much with us – but instead I’ll look back to happier times, when complete incompetence was no great barrier to earning a crust, and kick off with Clerks, Kevin Smith’s only good film (discuss?)……

What films about work would you recommend?

*Or, if you prefer, films about happiness.


RR Films: Futility

So that’s it then. The ball is rolling, the timid resistance of the Lords being the final attempt to guide its direction in any way. Resistance is futile.

Sorry, but I don’t really understand where the world is going any more, and trying to find positives seems futile too (well, almost: I got an A-lister for the RR Songs topic…).

But there’s often black humour to be found in futile situations, even when the local authority decides it’s going to take your property and destroy you in the process. As in Leviathan:

What films featuring futility would you recommend?

RR Films: Spying

As if eavesdropping on Donny’s conversations would be of any use to anyone! Whatever he says one day changes the next, he uses words for effect instead of meaning and he wouldn’t recognise the truth even if it kissed him on the nose…..But it’s all part of the double-think game he’s suckered folks into playing for quite some time now. Let’s just hope everyone gets tired of it soon and starts completely ignoring him.

Anyway, films about spying. An industry in its own right, perhaps, but good ones aren’t all that common. Coppola’s The Conversation is a good one, however; the paranoia seeps into every scene as well as Gene Hackman’s head.

What spy films – even Bond films – would you recommend?

RR Films: Mistaken Identity

After mistakenly identifying La La Land as this year’s Best Picture, PwC managed to pick the correct envelope and steer the Oscar to Moonlight with only a minor kerfuffle (aka Disgrace! So Bad! Unfair! #LaLaTrueWinner). I’ve only seen the latter but I’m glad it prevailed, if only because it is filled with genuine humanity rather than jazz hands.

I’m looking for films this week in which someone/something is misidentified, such a mistake being material to the story. The 2012 documentary, The Imposter, is a fascinating tale of a boy who claims to be the missing son of a Texan family. How that claim is tested is quite mind-boggling.

So, Dudes, what films involving mistaken identity would you recommend?

RR Films: Change Of Mind

It may be that he simply ran out of alternatives – and it is bigly boring – but it looks like Donny has had a change of mind and appointed someone with a functioning brain, and maybe even some perspective, to an important job. Lucky the guy can’t say no to his C-in-C.

Films that involve a change of mind this week then. Either a main character doing so, or events changing several minds, or maybe that rare thing, a film that changed your mind.

I’ll kick off with Two Days, One Night (Deux jours, une nuit). Despite not being a Marion Cotillard fan, her character’s attempts to change her co-workers minds raised issues that engaged me.

What films involving mind-changing (not chemically; that seems like a possible future topic) would you recommend?


RR Films: Falling In Love

As this week’s episode falls on Valentine’s Day, we have to be looking at films about love, don’t we?

I have probably made great efforts to avoid things like Love Story, so the love films that stick in my mind don’t come smothered in flowers and choccies. I was going to recommend Mother, my favourite film of 2010, about the extent of a mother’s love for her son, but that’s a little too downbeat. So let’s go with Some Like It Hot, in which Tony Curtis and all heterosexual males fell in love with Marilyn Monroe, and Jack Lemmon acquired a suitor too. The story starts exactly 88 years ago today…..

What films about falling in love would you recommend?

RR Films: Refusal

John Bercow may be a puffed-up ego on short legs but I applaud his rejection of the tiny-fingered one and his attempt to prevent Parliament from hearing more of his bile. It’s a start.

Lets celebrate films about refusal then, those where the little man or woman digs their heels in to stop the big bully. 2012’s No, about RenĂ© Saavedra’s advertising campaign to defeat Pinochet in a referendum in 1988 fits the bill perfectly but I’ll kick off with Made In Dagenham instead.

Again, based on truth, the women refusing to take their lowly status any longer are also fighting against the patriarchy; which seems to fit the moment even better.

What films about refusal would you recommend?