At a “half-open” detention facility and work camp on the island of Imrali, a group of hopeful, but resigned men ritualistically converge on the entrance of the main penitentiary ward: first, for the disbursement of weekly mail and subsequently, for the eagerly anticipated posting of the list of prisoners authorized for a one-week furlough. A soft-spoken, unassuming man named Yusuf (Tuncay Akça), dispirited by the scarcity of letters from home, seemingly finds his fortune changed when he finds his name among the privileged list of furloughed prisoners. Mehmet (Halil Ergün), a pensive and conflicted man faces his trip to Diyarbakir with great trepidation and anxiety, having found his marriage increasingly strained when his wife begins to question his role in her brother’s death during a bungled robbery.
A vibrant and self-assured young man, Mevlat (Hikmet Çelik), finds his romantic notions to reunite with his fiancée Meral (Sevda Aktolga) thwarted when her family dispatches chaperones in order to prevent the couple from being alone. An idealistic and apolitical man named Omer (Necmettin Çobanoglu) who daydreams of his idyllic life amid the lush, grazing open fields of his beloved village in south-eastern Turkey returns home to the chaotic sight of his town under siege by the military as they attempt to root out suspected insurgents in the closely knit community. Continue reading
Review from senses of cinema by Dan Harper :
A Tale of Springtime is, appropriately enough, the first of Rohmer’s “Tales of the Four Seasons”, and bears out its title with a portrayal of incipient love. It also reveals, somewhat playfully, how impossible it is to force love to conform to our designs. Jeanne is a high school philosophy teacher who meets Natacha at a party in Montmorency. Since neither of them knows anyone else at the party, they strike up a conversation.
Jeanne shares an apartment in Paris with her boyfriend, who is out of town. But he’s left the apartment in a shambles and Jeanne stays just long enough to take some clothes and two books with her – Plato and Kant. She then stops at her own apartment, but her cousin Gaelle is using it with her boyfriend, who is on furlough from the military. Continue reading
“Haunters of the Deep” takes us to Cornwall with a tale of a haunted mine. The American CEO of Aminco Mining Corp. wants to re-open the tin-rich Strangles Head Mine, despite the dire warnings of old local miner Captain Tregellis (Andrew Keir, who himself started his working life in a mine at the age of 14) whose childhood friend had lost his life there many years before. Warnings are ignored (there’s local employment to think of too) and its is up to Josh, whose older brother has taken a job in the mine, and Becky, the CEO’s daughter, to set aside their initial animosity and bring about a rescue when the mine walls begin to let in the sea. With its Cornish coastal setting and elements of the supernatural – Spriggans and Jack o’Lanterns and the ghost of young miner lost decades before – “Haunters of the Deep” makes effective use of its distinct local setting. Continue reading
An impressive, often powerful Iranian feature (1987, 95 min.) by Mohsen Makhmalbaf—who started out as an antishah activist and fiction writer—composed of three sketches dealing with the poor in Tehran (1987). The first, freely adapted from an Alberto Moravia story, follows the appalling misadventures of an impoverished couple with four crippled children as they try to get their fifth and latest child adopted, in the hope that she won’t wind up crippled as well. The second follows the equally pathetic life of a scatterbrained, spastic Jerry Lewis type who devotes his life to caring for his aged and senile mother. (The couple from the first part reappear briefly in this episode.) The third part, shot in film noir style, is largely devoted to the grim fantasies of a clothes peddler who’s afraid of being killed by fellow traffickers. Each episode has a different cinematographer and all are shot very adroitly and fluidly, though the more self-conscious stylistics of the third part sit rather oddly with the first two episodes, which are often much closer to neorealism. According to Makhmalbaf, the film as a whole deals with the three stages of existence—birth, “journey through life,” and death. Critic Gerald Peary has compared the film to Rossellini’s Paisan, and it’s certainly true that the first episode is as wrenching as anything in that film or in Germany, Year Zero. In Farsi with subtitles. By Jonathan Rosenbaum
Review by Jonathan Rosenbaum
A 1989 film by Mohsen Makhmalbaf about the upsetting discoveries made by a shell-shocked veteran of the Iran-Iraq war after he returns to his job as a photojournalist in Tehran and to his fiancee, the daughter of a wealthy merchant. As in The Peddler, Makhmalbaf shows considerable talent and passion for dealing with the contradictions of contemporary Iranian life, and the restless and eclectic style of his direction makes this one of his most penetrating and disturbing works. In Farsi with subtitles. 75 min.
This one is also on Rosenbaum’s top 1000 list. Continue reading
Vincent Canby @ The New York Times, August 27, 1982 wrote:
Like the major characters in most of Eric Rohmer’s comedies, Sabine (Béatrice Romand), the heroine of Mr. Rohmer’s new Le Beau Mariage, seems almost ordinary at first. She is pretty in a fresh but unspectacular way, articulate, and seemingly well adjusted to a kind of enlightened middle-class existence.
Part of the week Sabine works in an antique shop in Le Mans, where she lives with her younger sister and widowed mother, and the rest of the week she is in Paris, where she is studying—half-heartedly—for a degree in art history and carrying on a casual affair with a married painter named Simon. Continue reading
Shuji Terayama (December 10, 1935—May 4, 1983) was an avant-garde Japanese dramatist, writer, director, and photographer, noted for such films as Emperor Tomato Ketchup and Fruits of Passion.
In 1967, Terayama started an experimental cinema and gallery called ‘Universal Gravitation,’ which is in fact still in existence at Misawa as a resource center. The Terayama Shuji Memorial Hall, which has a large collection of his plays, novels, poetry, photography and a great number of his personal affects and relics from his theatre productions, can also be found in Misawa.
source: artandpopularculture Continue reading