Ferzan Ozpetek – Hamam AKA Steam: The Turkish Bath (1997)

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If postmodern marriage is between equals, Francesco (Alessandro Gassman) and Marta (Francesca d’Aloja) have been computer selected. He is slim, tall, charmless, cold. She is slim, tall, charmless, cold. He is irritable and insensitive to other people’s feelings. She is angry and sensitive to her own feelings. They bicker and fight and work for a design company (their own) in Rome. They fit neatly into the high-stress, workaholic, image-conscious lifestyle, in which eating and talking and loving is snatched between phone calls and client consultations. Continue reading

Hynek Bocan – Cest a sláva AKA Honor and Glory (1968)

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This historical film by Hynek Bočan touches upon the indecisiveness of the Czech nation, ready to bend the backbone in face of foreign rule. Situating the story at the close of the Thirty Year War enabled the depiction of the misery of the people that affects even an impoverished aristocratic milieu. Rudolf Hrušínský appears here in the role of an indecisive knight, persuaded for a long time and in vain to join the anti-Habsburg movement. The story does not only captivate through the depiction of manifold human characters, intrigues and sycophancy, but also through the circumstances ruling over the devastated farmstead, sunk in mud and crudeness. One of the best films with an updating tendency has come into being here, rightly being named along the such greats as Kladivo na čarodějnice (Witches’ Hammer). Continue reading

Çagan Irmak- Prensesin uykusu AKA The Sleep of the Princess (2010)

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Aziz works as an assistant in a public library. He is alone, he does not have many friends but he is not really embittered against life. He just seeks an emotional refuge in someone who will care about him. Once he has new neighbors: Secil and her daughter, they put some color in his monotone life. The little girls dreams trigger some real life events. The trio will try to change the fate.

Prensesin Uykusu is a smiling and optimistic drama. Continue reading

Michael Tully – Septien (2011)

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Sydney Film Festival wrote:
If Ingmar Bergman had wandered into rural Tennessee and downed a few too many shots of moonshine he might have made something like this bizarre and compelling family drama. Mixing elements of Southern Gothic, sports drama, situation comedy and backwoods horror with biblical overtones, Septien takes us to the very strange farmhouse of the Rawlings brothers. Cornelius (played by writer-director Michael Tully), a Christlike figure and brilliant sportsman, has returned after an 18-year absence. Amos creates grotesque art in the barn, while Ezra dons a frock and does the housework. Then there’s Wilbur Cunningham, who lives in a tyre in the backyard. When a plumbing problem needs fixing the you-know-what really hits the fan. A disturbing, fascinating and darkly comic portrait of family ties, obsession and redemption, Tully’s movie is an American original that’s not to be missed. Continue reading

Ferzan Ozpetek – Le Fate ignoranti AKA His secret life (2001)

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AIDS doctor Antonia’s husband is killed by a car. She gets depressed until she learns he had been cheating on her with a man. Following her newly born curiosity for life, she goes to see her husband’s lover, Michele, and finds a huge apartment that he shares with gay and transgendered friends, including a Turkish immigrant and a prostitute. Antonia is reluctant to tell these people of her relationship to the dead man, but needs prompting to move on to a new phase of her life. Written by Sujit R. Varma Continue reading