I was hesitant to post it, but I thought it’d definitely get responses!
Lists always stir up a bit of debate
They’re made by idiots, i.e. people I don’t agree with.
Especially that Guy Lodge farktard!
Seriously, who rolls with a name like that Noonan.
Sounds like a steambath in Commercial Road in the eighties.
A decent list, but let’s face it, this is an impossible task. The list is a set up to promote discussion, which all such lists really do.
From this list, l have the following viewing experiences.
Nosferatu (FW Murnau, 1922, Germany) (seen once in the 1980’s, l have also seen the Klaus Kinski remake.)
The Passion of Joan of Arc (Carl Theodor Dreyer, 1928, France) (Own it on DVD.) 10/10 1928 110 min.
Co–written and directed by Carl Th. Dreyer with Rene Falconetti (Joan), Eugene Sylvain (Bishop Cauchon) & André Berley. Magnificent and superior silent version of the trial of Joan of Arc, made in the 1920’s. Falconetti is fabulous in her portrayal of Joan, which is far superior to any other version l have seen of her trial. The film was thought lost but an intact version was found in a closet in an insane asylum in 1981. The quality of the print is also outstanding.
Daisies (Věra Chytilová, 1966, Czechoslovakia) 10/10 1966 76 min
First seen August 2012. My review.
Director, story & screenplay: Vera Chytilová with Ivana Karbanová, Jitka Cerhová and Marie Cesková.
Those of us who are old enough remember where we were and what we were doing when certain momentous events took place in the 1960s, like the assassination of JFK. One of those other events that shook the world in that decade was the Soviet invasion of Czechoslavakia in 1968. l was in Adelaide on a high school exchange trip, when l saw pictures of the Russian tanks rolling down the main streets of Prague, splashed all over the front page. Well this movie was made 2 years before the tanks began to roll and would have horrified the Russians. Simply put it is a blatant exercise in hedonism and would have outraged the communists with their attempts to turn the whole world into one great, ugly and inefficient tribute to the excesses of Stalinism.
For the time, this film is incredibly creative. lts use of new editing tricks and techniques was revolutionary, and put it well ahead of its time. Every few minutes or so, the camera begins to do something, bold, new, effective and inventive. lt is a dazzling technical triumph on that level, but the tricks themselves are not just done for their own sake. They are well integrated into the corpus of the film, l hesitate to use the word plot, because the film is more of a playful adventure than anything else.
Two teenage girls indulge themselves in ways that were pretty much unimaginable for the time and place. They tease men in order to be fed and the consumerism and over indulgence in all things fashionable is surreal in style. ln between they muse over their own lack of direction and ponder what will become of them, but they never take themselves too seriously. A point probably lost on the Russian invaders, 2 years later. At the time the film was made and the country was invaded the Czechs were considered the most liberal of the Eastern bloc countries, and therefore the most likely to want to break away.
That the film was written by women and made by and about women would have horrified the Kremlin leaders no end. As IMDB says …’ as a fun romp, a sign of the times, and a historical piece, Daisies is superb.’
Céline & Julie Go Boating (Jacques Rivette, 1974, France)
(Own in on DVD and have seen it once. I thought it was okay without being great.)
The Enigma of Kaspar Hauser. (Werner Herzog, 1974, West Germany)
(seen in a cinema in the mid 1970’s)
The Tree of Wooden Clogs (Ermanno Olmi, 1978, Italy)
(Own it on DVD. Set in the late 19th century, the film details the lives of a group of ltalian serfs. Theirs is a harsh life and they struggle to provide for their families, providing an intimate glimpse into their hopes, dreams and fears. The film uses a group of local farmers and their families instead of professional actors. The results are outstanding.)
Talk to Her (Pedro Almodovár, 2002, Spain)
(Have it on DVD, but never got around to seeing it, same goes for Tie Me Up, Tie Me Down. I also own and have seen Broken Embraces, All About My Mother, Bad Education, Kika & Open Your Eyes.)
Uzak (Nuri Bilge Ceylan, 2002, Turkey)
(Have not seen this one, but l have seen Climates, 2006, an award winner at Cannes. It is an excellent contemporary urban based relationship drama.)
Talk to Her has a really weird scene with Paz Vega wearing her usual outfit…nada!, but is about two men looking after women in comas - one from a road accident, the other after being gored as a matador. Both men are chrome-domes.
Javier Cámara is in most Spanish films these days (Los Pasajeros Amantes, Vivir es Facil con los Ojos Cerrados, Truman, La Reina de España). Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown is good, as is The Skin I Live In. I skipped Bad Education (after 15 minutes - not into gay films). I can’t remember the English name of Los Pasajeros Amantes - nothing like a translation.
I suppose ‘Lobster’ is classified as an arty movie, so I’ll leave this here -
Do yourself a favour - skip it.
Lobster??? or The Lobster??
I watched the latter a while back and commented on it in the Movie thread. Farrell was really good I thought, “Bruges” level good.
Yep, I agree with your description.
The Lobster was same director as the Favourite. Lobster started out ok but lost it pretty quickly.
The Favourite was on down here last Friday. I skipped it for the BBL semi.
The people I spoke to were decidedly unimpressed and couldn’t understand whyit was winning any awards.
I went to a preview screening of a film in this year’s French Film Festival, The Ideal Palace (L’incroyable histoire du facteur Cheval). Because I’m lazy, here’s the summary from IMDB:
At the end of the 19th century, Joseph Ferdinand Cheval (Jacques Gamblin), is a simple postman who travels every day along the Drôme, from village to village. Alone, he is upset when he meets the woman of his life, Philomena (Laetitia Casta). From their union Alice was born. For this child he loves more than anything, Cheval then throws himself into a crazy gamble: to build her with his own hands, an incredible palace. Never spared by the ordeals of life, this ordinary man will not give up and will devote 33 years to build an extraordinary work: “The Ideal Palace”.
It’s based on a true story: the palace today is a French National Monument. I wasn’t expecting much but it was a delight. Directed by Nils Tavernier (son of Bertrand), very simple, no gimmicks. Bit of a tearjerker. Well worth a look. 7.5 out of 10. (I deducted half a point for the farking hand-held cameras.)
Saw two films from the French Film Festival today and both were very good.
First was The Promise of Dawn, based on the autobiography of French author, war hero, diplomat and screenwriter, Romain Gary. He was brought up by his mother (Charlotte Gainsbourg) in Warsaw and then Nice, and she had great plans for him. He escaped to England after the French surrender and was a navigator in bombers. During the war,he spent many hours writing his first book, European Education. He was later a diplomat at the UN, screenwrote the famous D-Day film, The Longest Day, married Jean Seberg, the US actress, and won the most prestigious French literary award under two names. Well worth a squiz.
Second one was a tour de force by Juliette Binoche - Who You Think I Am. She plays a university lecturer whose husband abandoned her after 20 years’ marriage for a girl 27 years younger. She takes a much younger lover, who dumps her and his roommate gives her the brush-off. She ends up friending the roommate on Facebook, posing as a much younger woman…but anyway…you still would despite her being 55 (yesterday). He falls pretty hard. This has got some great twists and turns. Just waiting for the Yanks to ■■■■ it up when they make their version.
I’ve seen two more today, Family Photo and Memoir of War.
Family Photo was family drama at its best, the way the French do it so mych better. It’s essentially about 3 thirtyish siblings, Gabrielle, whose son wants to live with his father, Eva, who desperately wants to conceive but can’t and has such a cranky attitude that everyone calls her Dragon, and Mao, who has his issues too and designs video games.
Their parents split up years back, and Dad bolted with a much younger girl who’s going to give the siblings a baby brother. The film primarily is about Grandma who’s suffering from dementia and who’s decided she wants to die in Saint-Julien where they spent some happy holidays. Very engagingly done. All the characters are great.
The second film was Memoir of War which is an autobiographical story about French author Marguerite Duras, who wrote the screenplay for Hiroshima Mon Amour. It starts in June 1944 before the liberation of Paris. She’s working for the Vichy and appears in reality to have had an affair with a French Gestapo officer, but that’s pretty sanitised. Her husband has been arrested as a resistance member (not germane to the story is that François Mitterand was in the same resistance cell) and is transported to Buchenwald then Dachau. She spends what seems to be an interminable time waiting to see if he’s died or is coming home. The actual dates involved seem to belie that.
I think this is too sanitised to be particularly believable.
Donned the black skivvy again last night and headed off with Shelton_10 to see The Summer House, starring, written by, directed by Valeria Bruni Tedeschi.
I don’t know what all the French words are for ‘steaming great pile’ but ‘de merde’ sums it up.
Absolute load of rubbish and this year’s Slack Bay.
0/10, and only because I don’t do negatives.
One more at lunchtime today before heading home…Non-Fiction with Juliette Binoche.
Last one…I enjoyed Non-Fiction, which is essentially about the publishing industry in Paris and how it fits into the present.
Two couples - Alain, a publisher, and his wife Selena, played by Juliette Binoche, who’s a TV actress.
The other couple is Leonard, a novelist who writes thinly-disguised novels where the other characters, ie the women he’s bedded, are easily identified, and his wife, Valerie, who’s a political operative for a socialist pollie.
Laure has been employed by Alain to handle digital publishing and naturally he’s doing her too.
Being French, they seem remarkably tolerant of each other’s affairs.
A nice little bit towards the end is where they discuss an audible version of Leonard’s latest and moot using the real Juliette Binoche as the narrator…while she sits opposite him in the guise of his wife.
I enjoyed it, but it’s a solid 7.5-8 out of 10.
Out of the six films, i’ve had 2 nines, 2 eights and six and a zero.
The English film gets a three and the Spanish one a nine.
I saw a danish film on the plane recently. The Guilty. Fantastic.
Interestingly, probably a better feel for the drama with a screen close to my face and headphones on.
It’s also one of those movies where the less you know about it the better. Just watch.