Wild and Precious (2012) Poster

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Maverick film making
Phil_M_A_Kerr20 October 2012
Wild and Precious is a Maverick filmmaker's film because with it Mousoulis provides the best modern example of how to fully exploit the freedoms of a low-budget production without veering from narrative form. Here he is taking on a global theme with a handful of true artistic talents. W&P has Greece's recent and dramatic socio-economic troubles as a back-drop, a unique, mature and charismatic lead, engaging, diverse and well-cast supporting characters, and a simple yet seductive narrative all under Mousoulis' deceptively subtle direction. I was transported to two foreign lands and languages (I've never been to Greece nor to Italy) and I met eclectic characters that were, amidst a backdrop of seething tension, rendered so human by delicate and committed performances given within the restrained story arc. There were 2 brief moments during Mousoulis' low-budget art film when I asked myself if I was watching either a documentary, or THE documentary within the film's narrative. The simple fact that I never bothered to answer that question belies Mousoulis' true talent as a filmmaker. He has the ability to construct out of drama, story arcs, 3 acts, etc., a window through which we look at real people, us, dealing with real life. That, ie 'real life', doesn't sound at all as, yep, wild and precious in my sentence as it is in this film. Congratulations to all involved.
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Fighting for beauty
yorgosmanolis10 October 2012
Warning: Spoilers
Wild and Precious is indeed a film made of pieces. They are crafted together to convey a sense of what life is like for all of us, but especially for Giulio, the film's protagonist. He chooses to place himself squarely in the midst of the Greek financial crisis, which he probably loves to hate. The two sided coin is by no means lost with this movie. The antagonist is the rotting system which leads countries and lives to ruin, and "Mona Lisa" smiles all the while, unaffected. Like a figure in a dream, Giulio weaves his way through life, led by his aspiration to be a film maker of substance. The role, played by Alessandro Figurelli, is delivered with honesty and with a very engaging presence, as is the same with all the other cast members. They have all been very well chosen and deliver beautiful performances. Like one of Greece's stray dogs, Giulio walks on with persistence, caught in a grip, and proceeds with that quality which makes life hard to squash. His head in the clouds and one foot on the ground. He wants to experience and capture life as it really is and he doesn't mind getting his hands dirty and his feet wet. I get the sense that he was born this way, and it is not an affliction. He gauges there is something important going on and proceeds to try to understand it, document it, and even try to solve it. The opening segment, where Giulio introduces himself, is a poignant soliloquy; he is obviously no-ones fool. He has thought long and hard. He has sacrificed a lot for his ambitions but holds on to a memory of what life could be like, albeit with a flimsy grasp. Unfortunately, it seems the years he was absent from his daughter, in pursuit of his mission, has created a chasm between them, yet he is trying to resolve this as best as he can. By the end of the film, he has yet to attain this goal, which for me, adds to the realism. You can never fully undo the past. Memories linger. He has tasted the tears of his losses but nevertheless, he is propelled by the smell of revolution. It is an enigmatic film which manages to portray life without melodrama. Life is rarely some kind of perpetually marvelous or grievous thing, and the real film maker here wants us to know it. It moves at a steady pace, unfolding, re-folding and unfolding again. Like many of Bill Mousoulis' films, a dream like quality infiltrates the narrative, because surely, dream-like is what real life is like. I also get the feeling this film is somewhat autobiographical. Wild and Precious is a cut and paste, bareback ride, into fleeting glimpses of knowledge and oblivion. It is a must see film for anyone who seeks to fight against injustice, yet still finds time to smell the roses, even if it's just for a little while. After all, it's beauty that the best wars are fought for. An excellent excuse to go wild, for the sake of what is precious. Wild and Precious is a film about loss and gain, where loss is gain and gain is loss. I recommend this film for anyone who dwells outside the narrow confines.
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