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FISH TANK Discussion
#1
Small British movie directed by Andrea Arnold (who did Red Road), about a 15 year old girl living in a pretty dysfunctional family on a housing estate, who dreams of escape. As someone who works a lot with teenagers going through shit, I really empathised with this, and thought the portayal of Mia by Katie Jarvis was fantastic.

A lot of it is shot handheld, and I felt very much like I understood this existence. Michael Fassbender is, as usual, superb as the partner of Mia's mother, who develops a relationship with Mia. The movie is pretty downbeat, and there's a real desperation running through the whole thing, which is totally true to the situation and never feels forced, and whilst there is a scene at the end that I found slightly out of place, it doesn't try and smuggle in a happy ending. I thought this was terrific, and I'm hoping some more peope here seek it out.

Oh, and the kid who plays Mia's younger sister is hilarious and gets all the best swearing, but manages to be really endearing.
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#2
Not sure on the etiquette of posting reviews from other sites, but here's Beaks' :-

http://www.aintitcool.com/node/43852

He didn't he like it. Some of his criticisms I can't answer, particularly the ones about influences as I haven't seen most of the movies he mentions. My like for the movie did come to a large extent out of being able to recognise in the movie a lot of truth in the social situations and character work. Even if the movie isn't for you though, it's worth watching solely for Katie Jarvis performance, which is a phenomenal debut of confusion, anger, and yearning.
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#3
Quote:

Originally Posted by AdrianDyka
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Small British movie directed by Andrea Arnold (who did Red Road), about a 15 year old girl living in a pretty dysfunctional family on a housing estate, who dreams of escape. As someone who works a lot with teenagers going through shit, I really empathised with this, and thought the portayal of Mia by Katie Jarvis was fantastic.

A lot of it is shot handheld, and I felt very much like I understood this existence. Michael Fassbender is, as usual, superb as the partner of Mia's mother, who develops a relationship with Mia. The movie is pretty downbeat, and there's a real desperation running through the whole thing, which is totally true to the situation and never feels forced, and whilst there is a scene at the end that I found slightly out of place, it doesn't try and smuggle in a happy ending. I thought this was terrific, and I'm hoping some more people here seek it out.

Oh, and the kid who plays Mia's younger sister is hilarious and gets all the best swearing, but manages to be really endearing.

I saw it much like you Adrian. Exactly like you it seems. I can see where Beaks was coming from but I didn't get caught up on the references as much as he did.

How did you like the aspect ratio? At first I thought the 4:3 (which seems almost 1:1 at first) was a projectionist error, because the last two films I'd seen at the little theatre I was in had started out with the ratios fucked up, but once I got my bearings and saw that the people didn't have the body proportions of grey aliens I settled into it really easily. In fact, for a film with an anti-widescreen frame it still feels plenty cinematic.

And those performances, from every single actor, are superb. Even when the plot stretches a little to far to feel genuine (the headbutt scene, the deal with the horse, the outing with Connor's daughter) Katie Jarvis and her support players are real enough to keep the story's momentum up.

I need to hunt down Red Road now.
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#4
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Originally Posted by Bucho
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How did you like the aspect ratio? At first I thought the 4:3 (which seems almost 1:1 at first) was a projectionist error, because the last two films I'd seen at the little theatre I was in had started out with the ratios fucked up, but once I got my bearings and saw that the people didn't have the body proportions of grey aliens I settled into it really easily. In fact, for a film with an anti-widescreen frame it still feels plenty cinematic.

Yeah, I was a little thrown off at first as it's not what I'm used to. I don't know if it was done purposefull, but the 4:3 increases the sense of claustrophobia, particularly in the scenes inside the flat, and the sense of Mia being trapped, although I'm pretty sure you could get the same effect with widescreen.

Getting some distance, I really like Jarvis and Fassbender's performances, and their characters feel real to me, but that reality isn't necessarily maintained in the plot. Hopefully the Fassbender love around here will encourage more people to check this out, as it's worth it for him and Jarvis.
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#5
I hear Andrea Arnold is tackling Wuthering Heights next. Not a film I'd normally be that bothered about but I'm very intrigued to see what someone like her will do with the material. Might be a very different kind of costume drama. I'm also glad she's challenging herself.
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#6
The acting was terrific. Of course Fassbender sold the character like no one. Walking the fine line between creep and charming.
Jarvis was so believable, hard to swallow that this is her first role. When she dropped Connor's daughter into the river, holy shit!
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#7
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Originally Posted by Tati
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Jarvis was so believable, hard to swallow that this is her first role.

She was very compelling to watch in this, and really perfect for the role, but I wonder how much of it was acting and how much of it was just her comfort in playing a version of herself.
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#8

I don't remember Jarvis smoking in this movie. She did a bunch of drinking. The little sister smoked though.

It's the slums of Essex, but the movie is shot beautifully. For it's 4:3 aspect ratio everything works well.  I consider it more of  a stylistic choice. There's only once scene that the limited ratio shows it's problem. The story has me so hooked that I hoped some of the shady aura one of the characters gave off would not reach fulfillment. When it does, it's gut punching scene for all involved.

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#9
ACaught this by accident again last night. Still a very fine piece of work.

Any Fassbender fan who hasn't seen it isn't a real Fassbender fan. Trust me, I've checked the rules in the Fassbender Fan charter.
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