Drama

Michelangelo Antonioni – Identificazione di una donna AKA Identification of a Woman (1982)

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Michelangelo Antonioni’s Identification of a Woman is a body- and soul-baring voyage into one man’s artistic and erotic consciousness. After his wife leaves him, a film director finds himself drawn into affairs with two enigmatic women: at the same time, he searches for the right subject and actress for his next film. This spellbinding antiromance was a late-career coup for the legendary Italian filmmaker, and is renowned for its sexual explicitness and an extended scene on a fog-enshrouded highway that stands with the director’s greatest set pieces (-Criterion) Read More »

Mario Soldati – Tragica notte aka Tragic night (1942)

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Released from jail, Nanni (Checchi) punches prison guard Stefano (Ninchi) who has
denounced him. In order to take revenge, Stefano suggests the suspicion that, during his
absence, his wife has had business with the Count Paolo (Rimoldi). A few days later, at
night, a deadly ambush will be prepared. Read More »

Bernard Émond – Tout ce que tu possèdes AKA All That You Possess (2012)

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Pierre Leduc leaves his job as a university lecturer in an effort to escape the world, only to have his plans thwarted as two family members reach out to him: first, his dying father, who wants to leave him a fortune of ill-gotten gains, and then the young daughter whom he abandoned years ago.

Québécois cinema has often explored the bonds that keep us together, but rarely has the subject been addressed so elegantly or so powerfully. An obsessed scholar attempts to withdraw from the world but finds personal ties drawing him back into the family he had left behind, in this novelistic, beautifully modulated drama from acclaimed Québécois filmmaker Bernard Émond. Tout ce que tu possèdes is characterized by a meditative style, a novelist’s eye for detail and startlingly beautiful grace notes. @Tiff Read More »

Mohsen Makhmalbaf – Nun va Goldoon AKA A Moment of Innocence (1996)

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Analyzing the intricacies and variances between differing film titles is something of an indulgence for film critics, especially when they’re searching for a quick, utilitarian lead into otherwise complex films. Mohsen Makhmalbaf’s film à clef revisitation (or, rather, a cinematic palimpsest) of a violent 1974 encounter from his past as an angry young fundamentalist went by the title A Moment of Innocence in its European and American releases, but its original Farsi title was actually Bread and Flower. The latter title refers to the two objects that play into the all-important remembered event, when Makhmalbaf stabbed one of the Iranian Shaw’s policemen in an attempt to snatch his gun away, an attack that led to the future director’s incarceration. (Makhmalbaf hid his knife under a circle of flatbread; the policeman was holding a flower he intended to offer the entrancing young girl who, unbeknownst to him, was actually a decoy intended to distract the cop so Makhmalbaf could steal his firearm.) Some 20 years later, while a reformed and de-radicalized Makhmalbaf was directing Salaam Cinema, the now former-policeman approached Makhmalbaf again, their meeting (and triggered memories) spurning A Moment of Innocence, a title of which seems to echo the film’s aura of reflective enlightenment and mutual cooperation between the two men (as opposed to the Farsi title’s emphasis on the fragmented multiplicity of memory). Read More »

Nadir Moknèche – Goodbye Morocco (2012)

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Single mother Dounia lives with a Serbian architect in Tangiers—a scandalous relationship in the eyes of her Moroccan family. The couple supervises a construction project, where earthmovers uncover 4th century Christian tombs decorated with ornate frescoes. Dounia embarks on a lucrative but illegal trade in the hope of making some quick money so she can leave Morocco with her son and her lover. But one of the construction workers disappears… Read More »

Lisa Barros D’Sa & Glenn Leyburn – Good Vibrations (2012)

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A chronicle of Terri Hooley’s life, a record-store owner instrumental in developing Belfast’s punk-rock scene.

IMDB user comment: It’s the morning after the night before, and I’m feeling more than a little fragile as I may have overdone the celebrating a bit. I very rarely drink at all, but I got caught up in all the reminiscing and nostalgia last night. My head is splitting and I’m croaking like frog, yeah! As you’ve probably already guessed it was a killer night.

The’Good Vibrations’ movie has been a longtime coming – jeez, the film has been in the pipeline for around 13 years and it’s been over two years since the excellent 10 minute fund raising pilot film was made and then screened one Sunday afternoon in Feb 2010 at the ‘QFT’. Understandably I couldn’t wait to see this film.

I’m absolutely delighted that the ‘Good Vibrations’ film is here at last, and not only is the movie making its high profile red carpet debut it’s also launching the ‘Belfast Film Festival. For the first time ever there’s a big screen erected especially for the premiere in the historic Ulster Hall which is celebrating its own 150th birthday this year. There was TV coverage all through the glorious day on the local news bulletins. which is not surprising as this is the true (ish) story of a most unlikely Belfast anti hero & the hottest ticket in town for quite some time. Requests to attend the premiere far out stripped supply so two more screenings were quickly arranged (& sold out) to cope with the overwhelming demand. Read More »

Hans Petter Moland – Kjærlighetens kjøtere AKA Zero Kelvin (1995)

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The opening sequence of Zero Kelvin scrolls across a bleak, vast Norwegian wilderness that is virtually inhospitable for men and most beasts. This white, magnificent landscape exudes tremendous beauty, but it also represents death for those foolish enough to fight its dominance. What happens to a civilized human being when he spends enough time is this environment? In this tightly constructed character study, director Hans Petter Moland explores the effect of this land on the fragile human psyche.

Gard Eisvold is a restless, poor young writer living in Oslo who decides to get a little more worldly by joining an Arctic fur-trapping expedition. Leaving behind his girlfriend, Eisvold travels to Greenland, where he’s confronted with the dual harshness of the elements and his profane station-captain, played with brilliant malevolence by the great Stellan Skårsgard. The captain doesn’t take kindly to having a violin-playing, poetry-writing college boy around the cabin, and he begins to torture Eisvold in a cunning if none too subtle fashion. Soon, of course, they’re at each other’s throats despite each needing the other’s help to survive the wilderness.
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