Thursday, 9 September 2010

Missing film

I'm looking forward to the new film version of Kazuo Ishiguro's Never Let Me Go. Ishiguro (when you've set yourself up in the mood for his style) is one of the best, most engaging, and gently (or subtly) disturbing writers around. The book was good (though I await an attempt to film the excellent, perhaps unfilmable, The Unconsoled). The film is directed by Mark Romanek, director of the very good One Hour Photo  – and the excellent Static.

Or, as he likes it and as Time reports this week, "his single feature film (One Hour Photo)." Romanek is an example of the pitfalls of an artist having full control of their work. He doesn't like the superb Static and tries to wipe it from memory and release. (I guess journalists like the one from Time go along with his decision, or didn't fact-check, and there's no DVD version). It was one of the best independent small films I've seen – but can't see again.

I imagine Never Let me Go will be good. But I wish his "artistic temperament" (in quotes because he'd prefer you to remember his music videos than the quirky, tragic feature film from his younger days) would allow us to see Static again. There's only one video on YouTube which puts scenes of the movie to the main song (This is the Day by The The) from the soundtrack, and reveals rather too much. The withholding of the film is our loss – but Romanek's too.

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