Drama

Bernardo Bertolucci – Novecento aka 1900 [Extras] (1976)

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Synopsis

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Bernardo Bertolucci’s vast historical melodrama used the massive popular, critical, and financial success of its predecessor, the scandalous LAST TANGO IN PARIS, to mount a production of epic scale. Cut down to four hours for its American release, the film utilizes an all-star Hollywood…
Bernardo Bertolucci’s vast historical melodrama used the massive popular, critical, and financial success of its predecessor, the scandalous LAST TANGO IN PARIS, to mount a production of epic scale. Cut down to four hours for its American release, the film utilizes an all-star Hollywood cast to tell its heavily Marxist tale of Italian peasants during the twentieth century. Two boys born on the same day are destined for divergent paths; Olmo (played by Gerard Depardeiu as an adult) is born to peasant parents and will become a passionate socialist, while Alfredo’s (Robert De Niro as an adult) bourgeois, landowning origins will lead him to ultimately embrace fascism. Driven by a sincere hope for and belief in political change, Bertolucci’s film is nonetheless made up of very humane individual stories; it concentrates on highly personal experiences of a politically-charged time, which color the little dramas of love, sex, family, and community. It is at once an epic poem and a political manifesto, and it is the product of a director who was unabashedly communist in his youth, contrasting markedly with later works like 2003’s THE DREAMERS. Read More »

Aki Kaurismäki – Likaiset kädet AKA Dirty Hands (1989)

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Aki Kaurismäki is a cult and prolific Finnish filmmaker known for his offbeat, deadpan style. One of cinema’s great humanists, his films explore the misfortunes of the misfits and disaffected of Helsinki with great affection and droll, sometimes black, humour.
Although influenced by filmmakers such as Robert Bresson, Luis Bunuel and Jim Jarmusch, Kaurismaki has a distinctive cinematic style of his own, recognisable by his spare, economical visuals, eclectic soundtracks of vintage rock and pop and use of a regular troupe of actors, including Kati Outinen, Marko Peltola & Matti Pellonpaa… and dogs. Read More »

Johnnie To – Cheung fo AKA The Mission (1999)

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Triad boss Lung, who has just escaped being killed in an assassination attempt hires the killers Curtis, James, Mike, Roy and Shin for his protection. Their grown solidarity is under compulsion when Lung orders Curtis to kill Shin in punishment for his affair with Mrs. Lung. Read More »

Alessandro Blasetti – La corona di ferro AKA The Iron Crown (1941)

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Storyline

A crown, supposedly made from a nail out of the Cross of Christ and the metal of Roman swords, becomes a legend and a symbol of justice.

Imdb user review:
Wonderul Vintage Epic from Italia!, 18 October 2003
8/10
Author: olddiscs from Fords, NJ

Bravo Blassetti ! Bravo Massimo Girotti ! What a surprise from Italy! An Epic saga..Mythological & religious…Sort of an Italian Star Wars meets Robin Hood meets Ben Hur ! Action ! Lust ! Mythological settings ! Forests, loincloths ,moats,chariots, swords, jousting & a story line which never loses your interest!!What a Spectacle !! predates most of our great spectacular films of the 1950s by many yrs (Ok, we had silent films King of Kings & 10 Commandments & some other De Mille Films, Sign of the Cross etc) but this mythological setting was unusual for the times… Cant wait to see again.. Massimo Girotti whose work I know from Senso & later Medea is excellent… rest of cast were not known to me & also not aware of director, Blassetti…. now I am !Will look forward to viewing The Iron Crown again,.and other films by Blassetti..Thanks again TCM !! Read More »

Aditya Assarat – Wonderful Town (2007)

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It takes place some time after the 2004 Tsunami in a now nearly deserted tourist town. An outsider (an engineer) comes to town and becomes involved with local life. The unfinished mourning process and grieving permeate the film’s atmosphere, diegetic pace is slow and lyrical. The town’s beachfront is being redeveloped, but the residents’ inner life seems stunted. Seemingly unable to contain mourning and guilt, the film steadily moves toward a notion of sacrifice and violence (see René Girard). The plot’s outcome is depicted with much moral restraint and emotional distance and the lack of closure left uncommented.

–stefflbw Read More »

Maria Speth – In den Tag hinein AKA The Days Between (2001)

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Twenty-two-year-old Lynn lives spontaneously waiting to see what the day brings. Earning money as a dancer in a trendy nightclub allows her to release her pent-up energy. Impulsive, she has difficulty relating to her disciplined boyfriend David, a professional swimmer with a strict practice schedule. Her love life takes a turn when she meets Japanese student Koji, who shares her sense of freedom, sensuality and abandon. –Celluloid Dreams Read More »

Khushboo Ranka & Anand Gandhi – Continuum (2006)

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Continuum

This film narrates simple enjoyable stories from everyday life that explore the continuum of life and death, of love and paranoia, of trade and value, of need and invention, of hunger and enlightenment. The five moments of its childlike innocence branch out into a more intricate gamut of an urbanscape, culminating into a space where the stories no longer exist as singular threads in their own vacuum but come across and play with each other to form a larger fabric of life. Read More »