Vladimir Carvalho – O País de São Saruê AKA The Land Of São Saruê & 3 shorts (1971)

29f7c043f76a2bde437fd0d52a185152

Plot Outline: Documentary about a region in Northeast Brazil, situated in an area subject to severe drought, and the evolution of its economic activities.

quote:
The Land Of São Saruê, one of the most important Brazilian documentaries, was produced in 1970. It was banned by censorship until 1979 when it wasselected for the Brasilia Festival and wont the jury prize. The film, now restored, was hot in 16mm and then copied onto 35mm. The 16mm original has disappeared. The restoration was made using the extant 35mm internegative. The treatment given to the original sound generated a new re-equalized and remixed sound negative. Within the constraints of an optical restoration the restorers tired to eliminate imperfections caused by improper handling and storage. Due to the poor conditions of the original material some scenes couldn’t be totally restored. This optical restoration will enable such defects to be minimized through digital treatment in the future. Restoration was made from March 2003 through September 2004 by Francisco Sergio Moreira, under the supervision of the original director, Vlamidir Carvalho with Myrna Brandão and Carlos Augosto Brandão from the Brazilian Cinema Researchers’ Center. Continue reading

Lino Brocka – Maynila sa mga kuko ng liwanag AKA Manila in the Claws of Light (1975)

29f7c043f76a2bde437fd0d52a185152

Quote:
Manila: In the Claws of Darkness is the most impressive of his films noirs, made with bows to the American cinema, to Italian neo-realism and to his own country’s tradition of star-driven melodramas, but with the force of a third-world director determined to say something about his own society.It is the richly romantic but realistic odyssey of a boy named Julio, who arrives in Manila from the country to search for his childhood sweetheart. The darkness of the title refers to the capital itself, which, said Brocka, exerts an invisible force on the lives of its people. Continue reading

Sergei Parajanov & Dodo Abashidze – Ashug-Karibi aka The Hoary Legends of the Caucasus (1988)

29f7c043f76a2bde437fd0d52a185152

Synopsis: Wandering minstrel Ashik Kerib falls in love with a rich merchant’s daughter, but is spurned by her father and forced to roam the world for a thousand and one nights – but not before he’s got the daughter to promise not to marry till his return. It’s told in typical Paradjanov style overlaid with Armenian folksongs. source Continue reading

F.J. Ossang – Le Trésor des Iles Chiennes AKA Land of the Dead [+Extra] (1990)

29f7c043f76a2bde437fd0d52a185152

Synopsis
The world after the atomic age. An engineer disappears, together with his consortium (Kryo’Corp) and his discovery: a new energy source powered by the fusion of two primary substances. Ulysses, Kryo’Corp’s heir, organises an expedition to the only place these substances occur… Continue reading

Alain Robbe-Grillet – Glissements progressifs du plaisir AKA Successive Slidings of Pleasure (1974)

29f7c043f76a2bde437fd0d52a185152

Quote:
When you think of art house directors you probably think of some of the more famous filmmakers like Werner Herzog (Aguirre, the Wrath of God), Peter Greenaway (The Cook, the Thief, His Wife & Her Lover) or Alejandro Jodorowsky (Holy Mountain). Someone you may not know is French writer and filmmaker Alain Robbe-Grillet. Robbe-Grillet was part of the “nouveau roman” novelist movement which diverted from the classical style of writing and deviated from the norm with experimental prose. The same could be said with his film Glissements progressifs du plaisir (literal translation is “Gradual shifts of pleasure”) aka Successive Slidings of Pleasure where he blends dreamlike visuals with eroticism and, oddly, nunsploitation. Continue reading

Özer Kiziltan – Takva aka A Man’s Fear Of God (2006)

29f7c043f76a2bde437fd0d52a185152

A man’s fight between his religious beliefes and his instincts and desires. The atmosphere during the religious ceremonies makes a thrilling contrast to the priest’s everydays somehow dirty business in Istanbul where all is only about money. For the viewer these contrasts are sometimes amusing and sometimes shocking. The not-too-bright main character Muharrem is played by the fantastic Erkan Can. The director manages to show Muharrem’s troubled emotions in fantastic pictures. In one of my favourite scenes Muharrem is almost haunted by display mannequins wearing sexy lingerie while he is on duty for his brotherhood.
–totorochi Continue reading

Hsiao-Hsien Hou – Feng er ti ta cai AKA Play While you Play AKA Cheerful Wind (1981)

29f7c043f76a2bde437fd0d52a185152

The pop-star leads from Hou’s first feature, Cute Girl, are reunited in the director’s follow-up, a brisk work of bubble-gum romance that begins to experiment with the rules of the genre. This time, Taiwanese singing sensation Feng Fei-fei plays Hsing-hui, a trendy photographer visiting a seaside village in Penghu with her successful boss/fiancé. When she happens upon a flute-playing medic blinded in an ambulance crash (Kenny Bee), sparks fly, songs are sung, and she’s left with the tough decision of who to say “I do” to. Despite the eye-rolling premise, Hou infuses the film with enough formal ingenuity (long takes, telephoto lenses, on-location shooting) that a case can be made for its auteurial significance. Continue reading