Film avoids temptation to become a fashion show

DESPITE receiving financial backing from an Italian clothing company, press delegates at the Edinburgh International Film Festival, watching yesterday’s screening of The Lives of the Saints, were pleased to be seeing a film and not a fashion show.

The Lives of the Saints is the directorial debut of Glasgow-born photographer, Rankin. The founder of Dazed and Confused magazine secured support for the feature from Italian denim brand, Meltin’ Pot, for whom he acts as creative art director.

Though the film features pieces from Meltin’ Pot’s latest collection worn by four of the principal characters, Spike was happy to spot only one of the brand’s logos, in an early scene in the film.

According to the Italian company: “The product placement is very subtle just like you would see in any other film and in keeping with each of the characters’ personalities.”

As Augusto Romano, managing director of Meltin’ Pot, explains: “Being involved in the production of a movie, rather than being just a sponsor, not only provides a brand with both the opportunity to support a great cinema project but also to be highly innovative in terms of conveying the brand values, without being blatant about it.”

Written by Toni Grisoni, who wrote the screenplay for Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, the film is billed as a “’modern day fable’. It centres upon the shady dealings of a gangster family in North London, whose lives are changed for the better, and then the worse, upon the discovery of a strange child who can predict the future and reveal one’s deepest desires.

Rankin’s artistic input is clear to see in the transformation of grimy North London streets and tower blocks into a mysterious, fairytale setting. This is also an impressive display from a young cast, though the portrayal of Mr Karva, the brutish and violent head of the family, borders on the stereotypical mafia boss. But this does not distract from the moral of the story which comes across loud and clear: when you get what you wish for, don’t get greedy.

The Lives of the Saints is being screened tomorrow at 1900 and Friday at 1700, at Cineworld.