Thursday, May 31, 2012

Amintiri din epoca de aur (Tales from the Golden Age) (2009)

Directors:  Hanno Hofer, Cristian Mungiu, Constantin Popescu, Ioana Uricaru, Razvan Marculescu
Writer:      Cristian Mungiu
Language: Romanaian
Tales from Golden Age is composed of five whimsical yet blackly comic short stories, each set in the late communist period in Romania and based on urban myths from the time, reflecting the perspective of ordinary people. The title of film refers to the alleged 'Golden Age' (by communist propaganda) of the last 15 years of Ceausescu's regime.

Another film that can be added to some great films that came out from Romania over the last 15 years.

Rating: 4/5

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Hugo (2011)

Director: Martin Scorsese
Writers:  John Logan, Brian Selznick
Cast:      Asa Butterfield, Chloe Grace Moretz, Ben Kingsley
Set in 1930s Paris, an orphan who lives in the walls of a train station is wrapped up in a mystery involving his late father and an automaton.

Film is incredibly shit with stale script and very wooden acting which makes the two hours unbearably long. Scorsese might have concentrated too hard on 3D elements forgetting the basic elements of a good film. James Cameroon was supposedly impressed. He would be as his Avatar was equally shit.


Friday, May 18, 2012

Through the Wormhole (TV Series-Season 1) (2010)

Presented By: Morgan Freeman
Hosted by Morgan Freeman, Through the Wormhole will explore the deepest mysteries of existence-the questions that have puzzled mankind for eternity.

The presentation and explanations are not as good as the BBC documentaries like Horizon and Wonders of Universe. But it covers more ideas in a deeper way although the simplicity in explanation is uneven. Still a very good series and a must watch for those who wants to know about Cosmology and Particle Physics.

Rating: 4/5

Monday, May 14, 2012

La Promesse (1996)

Director:   Jean-Pierre Dardenne, Luc Dardenne
Writers:    Jean-Pierre Dardenne, Luc Dardenne
Language: French
Igor and his father, Roger, are making a decent living renting apartments to illegal immigrants and sometimes working them illegally (among other scams). Things begin to unravel when a worker falls from a scaffold and dies.

Its a good film whilst not being great overall. Reminded me of films for Majid Majidi.

Rating: 3.5/5

Dekalog (The Decalogue) (1989)

Director:   Krzystof Kieslowski
Writers:    Krzystof Kieslowski, Krzyzstof Piesiewicz
Language: Polish
Ten television drama films, each one based on one of the ten commandments.

Stanley Kubrick described it as the only masterpiece during his lifetime. Originally it was intended to be directed by ten young polish directors, but after finishing the scripts Kieslowski did it all himself. Two of the films were expanded to films as 'A short film about Love' and 'A short film about Killing'. The connection with the commandments are based loosely only. Undoubtedly Kieslowski's best work.

Rating: 5/5

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Le gamin au vélo (The Kid with a Bike) (2011)

Director:   Jean-Pierre Dardenne, Luc Dardenne
Writers:    Jean-Pierre Dardenne, Luc Dardenne
Language: French
Abandoned by his father, a young boy is left in a state-run youth farm. In a random act of kindness, the town hairdresser (Cecile De France) agrees to foster him on weekends.

The performances of the two leading roles are good but the rest of the characters and plot didn't seem convincing and felt like a very cliched story. Very unlike the usual Dardenne films.

Rating: 3/5

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Rosetta (1999)

Director:   Jean-Pierre Dardenne, Luc Dardenne
Writers:    Jean-Pierre Dardenne, Luc Dardenne
Language: French
Emilie Dequenne stars as young and impulsive Rosetta who lives with her alcoholic mother, moved by despair, she will do anything to maintain a job.

Camera mostly follows Rosetta or otherwise its shown as her POV angle. There is only natural soundtrack. Excellent film showing an unusual girl struggling with poverty and her nobility.

Rating: 4/5

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Stand by Me (1986)

Director: Rob Reiner
Writers:  Stephen King, Raynold Gideon, Bruce A.Evans
Cast:      Wil Wheaton, River Phoenix, Corey Feldman, Jerry O'Connell
A writer recounts a boyhood journey to find the body of a missing boy.

Beautiful film without any Hollywood glossing over. Excellent performances and a very good ending.

Rating: 4.5/5

Saturday, May 5, 2012

Le fils (The Son) (2002)

Directors: Jean-Pierre Dardenne, Luc Dardenne
Writers:    Jean-Pierre Dardenne, Luc Dardenne
A joinery instructor at a rehab center refuses to take a new teen as his apprentice, but then begins to follow the boy through the hallways and streets.

The film is shot mostly over the shoulders of the protagonist, Olivier played by Olivier Gourmet. It can be a bit difficult to watch but the effect that it produces is great. The story in itself is very simple but that's the beauty of this film. Gourmet got the best actor award at Cannes for his performance.

Rating: 5/5

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

La double vie de Véronique (The Double Life of Veronique) (1991)

Director:   Krzystof Kieslowski
Writer:      Krzystof Kieslowski
Language: French, Polish
Veronika lives in Poland. Veronique lives in Paris. They don't know each other.

Films is exquisitely shot with great soundtrack and excellent performance from Irene Jacob who is also there in Three Colours: Red. Film might need to be looked at again to appreciated fully.

Rating: 3.5/5