Drama

Lech Majewski – Wojaczek (1999)

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Description

A portrait of socialist Poland circa 1971 that recounts the last years of Polish poet Rafal Wojaczek, a rebel who became a legend.

Review from the New York Times

Wojaczek is a charming, maddening poète maudit whose every waking moment is a rebellion against the world around him. That world, Poland in the late 1960’s — the real Wojaczek died in 1971, at the age of 26 — is presented in gorgeously grim black and white. Mr. Majewski’s camerawork has an almost classical austerity, and for its first half the movie seems as static and distant as his shots. But just as Wojaczek’s nihilism has a core of passionate wit, so too does the movie as it moves deathward, picking up glimmers of humor amid the gloom. The funniest scenes — which might have come from the imagination of Jim Jarmusch or the young David Lynch — take place at a cavernous literary cafe, where a band called the Secret performs deadpan pop tunes while Wojaczek glowers and rants. Mr. Majewski’s view of him is candid, but also unmistakably romantic; he would rather present Wojaczek’s enigma than unravel it. Read More »

Zeki Demirkubuz – Yazgi aka Fate: Tales About Darkness (2001)

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“Turkey’s most promising new film-maker … the overall impression is that of a fresh talent on the verge of becoming a favourite of the arthouse circuit.”

Screen International

“Take the ennui of Camus, the soul of Bresson and the unwavering gaze of Kiarostami, and you might get something like Zeki Demirkubuz’s Fate.”

The Guardian

Synopsis:
Musa, who works as a bookkeeper in the customs office, believes in the emptiness and absurdity of life. He doesn’t struggle to change his life; he lets himself flow along with events because he thinks that it all leads to the same end. The death of his mother doesn’t affect him. Although he loves her, her death makes him joyful. In order to avoid making any decisions he marries a girl whom he doesn’t like, because she wants it. Whereas in his world, people deal with their fate by their own will and power. Musa is arrested for the death of a mother and her two kids. However, he doesn’t react to this event either… Read More »

Ingmar Bergman – Persona [+Extras] (1966)

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“Heavily artistically infused this chamber piece from Bergman lauded numerous international awards for both the film and the performances. It’s beautiful imagery from Sven Nykvist’s magnificent cinematography, its high level of pretension and its inability to be comprehensible have given it a unique place in cinema history. “Persona” can causes a myriad of personal reactions. Perhaps its greatest triumph is forcing the viewer to allow “it” to penetrate… to open yourself to its deeply felt expressions and perhaps have it touch upon your own. “Persona” is rife with universal emotions; pain, love, desire, regret, longing. This is a film that can be viewed multiple times garnering more from each visit … or less, depending on how you allow it to brush your subconscious… that part of you filled with emotions which you rarely, if ever, openly discuss. Read More »

Niall MacCormick – The Song of Lunch (2010)

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Quote:
A publisher leaves a Post-It note on his computer screen bearing the words “Gone to lunch” before heading off to meet an old flame at what was once their favourite London restaurant. But it becomes painfully clear to the publisher (Alan Rickman) that everything has changed. The restaurant isn’t the casual, noisy Italian with Chianti in raffia bottles it once was, and his old flame (Emma Thompson) isn’t the girl he once knew. Both restaurant and ex-lover are sleeker, more sophisticated and emotionally at a remove.
The Song of Lunch is a prose poem by award-winning writer Christopher Reid. It’s an unusual structure for a drama (the poem is Rickman’s interior monologue, though both characters chip in with dialogue), but it works fluidly and beautifully. Reid’s writing is gorgeous, and funny whether he’s articulating the courtesies of a restaurant visit (he describes catching the waiter’s attention as “the demure flutter of restaurant semaphore”) or matters of the heart. Throughout The Song of Lunch wears its cleverness lightly, and Reid’s use of language is a joy. Read More »

Michael Kalesniko – How to Kill Your Neighbor’s Dog (2000)

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Shy, chain-smoking, insomniac Peter McGowan is an L.A. playwright with a string of hits that preceded his current ten years of failed productions. His mother-in-law is sinking into senility, a stranger is meandering the neighborhood claiming to be him, neighbors have a new dog that barks all night; his wife wants to have a child, and he does not: he’s become impotent. He’s working on a new play when a single mom moves in next door with her 8-year-old daughter. His wife immediately invites the girl into the McGowan household. Will this child stir Peter’s paternal feelings? Will she also help him get his dialogue right? And what of his doppelganger and the neighbor’s dog? Read More »

Yves Allégret – Une si jolie petite plage aka Riptide (1949)

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Summary
One rainy night, a stranger arrives in a nondescript seaside town and checks into a cheap hotel. All that is known about him is his name – Pierre – and everyone he meets is suspicious of him. He appears to know the area well; he looks to be in good health. But why is he here? Why is he so sad? The answers emerge when another man appears on the scene, an acquaintance of Pierre who knows the crime that he has committed and who intends to use the information to his own advantage… Read More »

Tinto Brass – Capriccio (1987)

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Jennifer and her husband Fred seek out their old lovers for another fling in this erotic drama. Fred hooks up with the prostitute Rosalba, while Jennifer returns to the arms of the handsome pimp Ciro. The unfaithful couple return to each other after the affairs prove to be less satisfying then the memory of their initial experiences. Read More »