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Criticwire Critics Rank Tribeca; 'Yossi,' 'Planet of Snail' Among Standouts

Photo of Steve Greene By Steve Greene | Criticwire April 27, 2012 at 10:10AM

Unlike this year's Sundance, where “Beasts of the Southern Wild” cemented its status as the Sundance feel-good after seemingly everyone got behind it early, the Tribeca Film Festival program has divided critics. Rather than one film catching the attention of the masses, the reviews from our Criticwire members were more spread out at Tribeca. C and C+ grade averages dot the landscape. Nevertheless, there have been a handful of films that have either fared well or gained notoriety for various reasons. Here's a look at some of films that have provoked strong reactions from critics.
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The Bizarre Titles of Varying Success

"Eddie the Sleepwalking Cannibal."
"Eddie the Sleepwalking Cannibal."

In case you’re wondering, "Eddie - The Sleepwalking Cannibal" offers a quite literal depiction of the title character and his odd personality quirk. The film stars Thure Lindhardt (who, with this movie and "Keep the Lights On," is having quite a 2012 so far) as Lars, who soon discovers Eddie’s dark somnambulant side after sheltering him. DB Borroughs is convinced that "Eddie" is destined for cult classic status, writing that "it's a damn funny movie that milks its twisted take on things all the way to the end."

The Playlist’s Christopher Bell is less convinced, but still acknowledges that some audiences will likely revel in the dark laughs. "Save for some screenwriting hiccups (which are eventually overshadowed anyway) and a general lack of flair in the horror department," Bell writes "it's a very competent black comedy, one that should please audiences looking for something with some bite."

"Francophrenia."
"Francophrenia."

If James Franco has mastered one thing over his last decade of being in the public eye, it’s generating a buzz. The actor’s latest project, “Francophrenia (Or: Don’t Kill Me, I Know Where the Baby Is)” is the product of his stint on the soap opera “General Hospital.” Repurposing footage from his time on set, the resultant offering is a mixed bag of horror and satire that has failed to win over critics. The feedback has ranged from the loathsome (Joe Bendel declares that "'Francophrenia' is not a film, nor is it a concept") to the exasperated (Melissa Hanson says of the runtime, "even at 70 minutes, it felt like 3 hours, as nothing is resolved or accomplished.") However, one notable outlier is The Playlist’s Brandon Harris, who concludes his review by hailing the film as "a true marvel of the doc/fiction hybrid, a slender and seductive treatise on the edges of madness that may one day compare favorably with other works of American filmic experimentation as masculine meltdown, such as Jim McBride's "David Holzman's Diary" or Moses Milton Ginsburg's 'Coming Apart.'"

Eddie - The Sleepwalking Cannibal: B

Francophrenia (Or: Don’t Kill Me, I Know Where the Baby Is): C-

This article is related to: Tribeca Film Festival, Your Sister's Sister, Sleepless Night, Yossi, War Witch (Rebelle), Planet of Snail, Journey to Planet X, Francophrenia (or: Don't Kill Me, I Know Where the Baby Is), The Flat, Side by Side, Searching for Sugar Man


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