Arthouse

Emil Loteanu – Moy laskovyy i nezhnyy zver AKA A Hunting Accident AKA The Shooting Party (1978)

There is a lot to admire in Emil Loteanu’s film My Tender and Affectionate Beast aka Moy laskovyy i nezhnyy zver (1978). First of all, the music by Evgeniy Doga, especially the Wedding Waltz, lives its own life, has become very popular and often performed piece in Russia, and is truly amazing. Camera work is very attractive, so are costumes, sets, and landscapes. Very famous and talented actors play principal characters. Among them -Oleg Yankovsky, the narrator, the tender beast of the title, Kirill Lavrov, a weak and corrupted count, and Georgiy Markov, the middle-aged widower who had hopes for new love with the girl of his dreams. Read More »

Krzysztof Kieslowski – Trois couleurs: Bleu AKA Blue [+Extras] (1993)

SYNOPSIS:
In the devastating first film of the Three Colours trilogy, Julie, a woman reeling from the tragic death of her husband and young daughter, attempts to free herself from the past while confronting truths about the life of her late partner, a composer. Read More »

Alain Resnais – Les herbes folles AKA Wild Grass (2009)

Marguerite is a successful dentist with a busy practice and an offbeat hobby, flying small airplanes. One day, Marguerite loses her wallet, and it’s found by Georges, a seemingly happy man with a wife, Suzanne, and two children. As Georges looks through the wallet and examines the photos of Marguerite, he finds he’s fascinated with her and her life, and soon his curiosity about her becomes an obsession. Read More »

Carlos Diegues – Joanna Francesa (1975)

Joana is a sophisticated, beautiful woman, so she has a choice of lovers, and destinies. She will let down Pierre, the French consul at Sao Paulo, and with him the frivolity of tea-parties and comfort. Her wild inner-soul will develop into the wild forest surroundings of a landlord’s farmhouse. To the extent she will defend her land like a 19th century owner – of lands and men alike… Read More »

Chi Zhang – Dixia de tiankong aka The Shaft (2008)

In a poor mining town in western China, stories of a father and his two children intertwine. The misfortunes of son and daughter alike unravel to illuminate the complicated relationships masked by their community’s hard exterior. Read More »

Christoph Schlingensief – Mutters Maske AKA Mother’s Mask (1988)

Quote:

Mutters Maske aka Mother’s Mask is a free adaptation of the film Opfergang (1944) aka The Great Sacrifice of Veit Harlan.

Schlingensief exposes his source material’s dangerous proximity to kitsch and camp by reducing the genre conventions known from Harlan, Sirk, Fassbinder & Co to the level of a daily soap: set within a noble family from the German Ruhr, Schlingensief’s story revolving about Willy von Mühlenbeck’s tragic love to terminally ill neighbor girl Äls (Susanne Bredehöft) and the inheritance intrigues by his evil brother Martin von Mühlenbeck (Helge Schneider) creaks with melodramatic devices and self-conscious dialogues. Rather than being a mere spoof, “Mother’s Mask” is perhaps Schlingensief’s purest black comedy. Read More »

Leon Hirszman – São Bernardo [+Extras] (1971)

Synopsis
In the interior of Alagoas, the son of peasants Paulo Honório, is a peddler who wanders through the midlands negociating all sorts of things, from cow to religious artifacts. He grows an obsession: to take the São Bernardo farm from the hands of its inept owner, the indebted Luiz Padilha, making him his employee. Read More »