Emulating Renato Castellani, who had previously in 1960 filmed Romeo and Juliet on location in an Italian hill city, Franco Zeffirelli, veteran stage and opera director, combined the neo-realism of Italian cinema with the unabashed sentimentality of a Puccini opera in making this enormously popular adaptation of Shakespeare’s tragedies of young lovers. Moreover he filtered the action through the lens of Leonard Bernstein’s West Side Story to make the experience totally palatable to the rebellious youth of the late Sixties. What he sacrificed in Shakespeare’s language (and perhaps half or more of the text disappeared), he attempted to compensate for with a colorful and visually appealing panorama of life in a northern Italian city. Zeffirelli had previously accomplished much the same results with his filmed 1966 Taming of the Shrew (598) starring Richard Burton and Elizabeth Taylor. Moreover he also brought to the venture considerable experience as a director of staged Shakespeare for the RSC and other companies. Hundreds of aspirants were auditioned before lucky, then 14-year-old, Olivia Hussey snapped up the prized role as Juliet
Description from Shakespeare on Screen : an International Filmography and Videography by Kenneth S. Rothwell and Annabelle Henkin Melzer. Continue reading
Geneviève, 17, lives with her widowed mother, who owns an umbrella shop in Cherbourg. She and Guy, a twenty-year-old auto mechanic, are secretly in love and want to marry, but when she reveals this to her mother, her mother objects on the grounds that Geneviève is too young and Guy is not mature or well-established enough, particularly since he has not yet done his required military service. Shortly after this, Guy is drafted to serve in the war in Algeria. Before he leaves, he and Geneviève consummate their love for each other, which results in her becoming pregnant. While Guy is away they drift apart, and Geneviève, strongly encouraged by her mother, accepts a marriage proposal from a well-to-do gem dealer named Roland Cassard, who has fallen in love with her at first sight and has promised to bring up her child as his own. (The character of Cassard is continued from Demy’s earlier film Lola (1961).) Continue reading
All About Anna is a Danish film released in 2005, directed by Jessica Nilsson and starring Gry Bay and Mark Stevens. The film is explicit in its exploration of sexual relationships. It avoids being classified as pornography, however, through avoidance of closeup views of genital/genital contact.
It is a co-production between Innocent Pictures and Lars von Trier’s Zentropa Productions, and is the third of Zentropa’s sex films for women, following Constance (1998) and Pink Prison (1999). All three films were based on the Puzzy Power Manifesto developed by Zentropa in 1997. Continue reading
Keiko is a 23-year-old lonely virgin who lives in a tiny room, and hopes to meet someone in the cafe she frequents. After a bad affair with one of the other diners, she vows to give up men. She then begins a happy lesbian relationship with her co-worker Kazuyo. However she is under constant pressure from her father to marry. Continue reading
A prostitute (Evdokia) meets a sergeant (Yorgos). They fall in love and get married after a short love affair. Her profession, however, is a barrier for their relationship. They try to stay together and overcome their inner conflicts, but the social environment crushes them.
Many people who seem not to like originality and non-happy endings, are trashing this movie whilst others (amongst them myself) consider it one of the most important movie of the Greek cinematography. The movie is very very low budget but this doesn’t take away from the wonderful social critic, the very original direction and the amazing performances of most actors. When coupled with the beautiful music of Manos Loizos, it makes a movie really worth watching. The story as well as the character development is very well presented. Continue reading
Multi award-winning film, starring Maggie Cheung, Leon Lai and Eric Tsang. The film also features a role by renowned cinematographer Christopher Doyle (who has shot many of Wong Karwai’s films, and also shot films by Chen Kaige and Zhang Yimou).
The film’s Chinese title (Tian Mi Mi) is the name of a song by Teresa Teng which plays throughout the film. It translates as “Sweet Honey”, but also implies a close loving relationship. (Leon Lai sings the title song for the ending credits.) The film shows the love that Chinese people have for the famous singer, who died the year before the film was released; the film is considered a love poem in memory of Teresa Teng. Continue reading
Illia is Piraeus’s most popular person: an energetic prostitute, full of life and good humor.
Every day, she swims at the pier, entertaining the dock hands. Sundays she has an
open house with food, drink and song. Homer Thrace, an amateur philosopher from
Middletown, Conn., arrives in town to find out why Greece has fallen from ancient
greatness. He decides Illia is a symbol of that fall, so he sets out to study and to save
her. Unknown to Illia, he gets the money for the books and all else he gives her from Mr.
No Face, the local vice boss who wants Illia retired because her independence gives
other whores ideas. Whose spirit is stronger: Homer’s classical ideal or Illia’s? Continue reading