So, you are in the video store looking for something to watch. How do you know whether a movie is going to be good? Turn over the case and if it says Focus Features, stop looking and rent it. If you get your movies through netflix or the library, this is what I suggest: Go to the Focus website and put every single movie in their catalog in your queue.
I am telling you, this studio is incapable of producing a bad film. It could be because they work with some of the world’s greatest directors including Mira Nair, Ang Lee, Wong Kar-wai, Joel and Ethan Coen, Todd Haynes, Gus Van Sant, Jim Jarmusch and Woody Allen.
You’ve probably seen some Focus films. After all, they put out Being John Malkovich, Lost in Translation, The Pianist, 21 Grams, Motorcycle Diaries and Brokeback Mountain.
If you dig a little deeper into their catalog there are some real little gems in there.
I just checked the site and have a bunch of new films on my list to check out. Life is good.
Postscript: In looking for photos to post here, I discovered that there are plenty of people who found some of these films boring and not worth watching. If you have the patience for stories that unfold slowly, and spend more time on character than plot, you’ll be rewarded. I developed a taste for this style of filmmaking back in Austin when I was in school. I tried to watch every foreign film at Vulcan Video, country by country. Non Hollywood movies are different. The French and Chinese especially like to linger and let you get into a character. I’m glad to see, years later, the “independent film” movement in America getting differnt kinds of movies out there. And Focus, the “art house” division of Universal Pictures, is now putting out some quality film for us to enjoy.