In Conclusion: The Best and Worst of the Edinburgh International Film Festival

After almost two weeks of festival events and screenings, I have posted over 30 items about the festival.  So here is a breakdown of all the films, ranked along the scale: Awesome, Good, Eh…, Bad.  Click the title of the film to read the review.


1. Monsters
It has recently been reported that Monsters will be released in the U.S. October 29, 2010 in New York and L.A. with a wider release to follow.  I cannot wait for others to see it so I can talk about it without concern for spoilers.  My absolute favorite at the festival.

2. Winter’s Bone
Currently screening around the country; go see it, like right now.

3. World’s Greatest Dad
First off, I would advise against reading any plot summaries or any information about this film, as most sources spoil a major plot point – which is part of what makes this movie so great. Second, black comedies don’t tend to do well in the U.S., but for those who enjoyed Death to Smoochy, you should like this. You can currently find it streaming through Netflix.


1. The Illusionist
This is a ballsy animated film that will sock you in the gut with its poignant conclusion.

2. Au Revoir Taipei
Fun romantic comedy that should define the genre, instead of the trashy chick flicks from Hollywood.

3. Soul Boy
A kid goes on a local quest to save his father’s soul.  An energetic ride, really cool.

4. HIGH School

Funny and features Adrien Brody as a corn-rowed drug dealer.

5. The Dry Land
Good film about PTSD.

6. Two Eyes Staring
A horror film that’s a bit long, but the ending makes it worth it.

7. Jackboots on Whitehall
Not as funny as Team America: World Police, but a funny puppet movie nonetheless.


1. Snowman’s Land
Fun little movie.  Takes a while to get up to speed.  I’d rent it.

2. 22 Bullets
It promotes itself like a sequel to Leon: The Professional, but not nearly as great and not even the best action film.

3. The Last Rites of Ransom Pride
Interesting use of the Western.

4. Red Hill
This one is right in between “Eh…” and “Bad.”  Could have been so much more.


1. Police, Adjective
Interesting to analyze, boring to watch.

2. The Hunter
See Police, Adjective comment.

3. Cigarette Girl

4. Putty Hill
REALLY boring.

Cinematic Experiences
For those films that are beyond traditional storytelling:

Evil in the Time of Heroes
A Greek zombie movie constantly changing its tone.

My Son, My Son, What Have Ye Done?
Moody film about being crazy.

I didn’t want to ghettoize the documentaries, but there are different expectations from this style of filmmaking than fiction films.


1. The Oath
A documentary about one of Osama Bin Laden’s bodyguards. Very interesting character analysis…

2. Restrepo
The senselessness and banality of the U.S.’s current war in Afghanistan are on full display.


1. The People vs. George Lucas
Geek community accessible to all and raises interesting points.

2. Blank City
An informative documentary on transgressive and No Wave cinema.


1. Lucky
Analyzes lottery winners, but fails to press the class divide.

2. Countdown to Zero
A documentary about nuclear weapons that totally glosses over some basic history of said weapons.

One response to “In Conclusion: The Best and Worst of the Edinburgh International Film Festival

  1. Agree with your top three. Monsters and Winters Bone were amazing.

    Love your ‘Cinematic experiences’ bit. Totally agree.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s