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Close-Encounters

What's On? 16.09.17

The big movie event this weekend is Mother! starring Jennifer Lawrence and Javier Bardem (with Michelle Pfeiffer and Ed Harris supporting), a disturbing psychological horror about terrible things in the adult world, to follow last week's It and the focus on childhood. I'm looking forward to Mother! because I could really do with a grown-up disturbance, something that shakes me and shocks me. Last week's Stephen King horror, at times, made me roll my eyes. Clowns aren't as scary as I thought they would be.

But what's caught my eye for this weekend is the re-release of Spielberg's Close Encounters of the Third Kind. I think I remember my first-time exposure to it, as a young child, visiting relatives in Cardiff. It was on in the background on TV, and it looked scary as hell – the scene where the mother loses her child to the bright lights that surround her house as he disappears through the catflap.

It is, if I remember, a pretty dark film, and shouldn't be dismissed for its happy-ending. It covers the experience of a middle-age meltdown, of an inexplicable obsession, and of a disparate community brought together while everyone else thinks they're crazy. In this respect, the trans metaphor is suitable, but it's also a film about the heavens and the global community, with one of music history's most memorable five-note pieces. It is a film that I'd like to think was ahead of its time and has stood the test of time, a precursor to X-Files and Independence Day but much more beautiful, heart-felt and sophisticated. This weekend at Cameo cinema, I'll find out.
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