John Malkovich

  • Volker Schlöndorff – Der Unhold aka The Ogre (1996)

    By STEPHEN HOLDEN
    In its most unsettling scenes, set at a castle being used as a military training school for Hitler youth, Volker Schlondorff’s film “The Ogre” suggests the stirring cinematic equivalent of a Wagner opera.

    As you watch hundreds of adolescent boys being hyped with a messianic blend of heroic German mythology and Nazi ideology and participating in torch-lit rituals and athletic contests, you sense of the thrill of being a boy swept up in the demented pageantry and passion of the Nazi cause.Read More »

  • Michelangelo Antonioni & Wim Wenders – Al di la delle nuvole AKA Beyond the Clouds (1995)

    Synopsis:
    The many ways in which men are fascinated, compelled, and confused by their attraction to women are explored in this four part drama. As a filmmaker (John Malkovich) tries to sort out his plans for his next film, he considers several stories about women and the men who love them. Silvano (Kim Rossi Stuart) meets Carmen (Ines Sastre) and immediately asks her for a date, but despite his attraction, he can’t follow through on his feelings for her. The director spies a woman on the streets (Sophie Marceau) and follows her obsessively, but when he finally meets her, he’s disappointed, despite their mutual physical attraction. Read More »

  • Manoel de Oliveira – O Convento AKA The Convent (1995)

    Quote:
    The story centers on the unconventional American professor, Michael Padovic, and his stunningly beautiful wife, Helene, who journey to an eerie Portuguese convent to prove that Shakespeare was, in reality, a Jewish Spaniard. They journey to the spooky old convent of Arrabida where they are housed by the sophisticated, but rather creepy guardian of the monastery, Baltar, who immediately seems attracted to Helene. In order to spend more time with her, Baltar arranges for Michael to spend all his time in the convent’s great library; he is assisted by a beautiful young librarian. It is the wicked Baltar who tries to tempt Michael (in the way that Mephistopheles tempted Faust) into becoming immortal through his research and writing.Read More »

  • Jane Campion – The Portrait of a Lady (1996)

    Jane Campion directs this notable adaptation of the Henry James novel, The Portrait of a Lady of 1881.
    Independent woman Isabel Archer (Nicole Kidman) refuses two suitors, Lord Warburton (Richard E. Grant) and Caspar Goodwood (Viggo Mortensen), when they propose marriage. Instead she travels to Florence, where family friend Madame Merle introduces her to Gilbert Osmond (John Malkovich) and his daughter Pansy. Soon Isabel finds herself falling for the mysterious Osmond. They are engaged to be married within three months, but much unhappiness lies ahead.Read More »

  • Liliana Cavani – Ripley’s Game (2002)

    Tom Ripley (yes same character from The American Friend – Dennis Hopper and Bruno Ganz – and The Talented Mr. Ripley – Matt Damon ). Some are more loosely based on the initial written character than others and occasionally bear only slight resemblances. I’ll wager reams have been written about this intriguing film, but on the surface we have a character study of a man who has chosen to live his life devoid of empathy (selective) to his fellow man. Quite a cynical microcosm of modern humanity. But the debate, of course, is how accurate that is. Is Ripely a true sociopath? Are we, as a society, all moving in the direction of the intense selfishness of Mr. Ripley? is that how our society has evolved? – to squash those who would stand in the way of our economic benefits. Read More »

  • Raoul Ruiz – Klimt [Director’s Cut] (2006)

    Ruiz, in an a propos to the film: ‘Above all this film should not be seen as a biography of the painter Gustav Klimt (what these days we call a ‘biopic’). It is indeed a fantasy or, if you prefer, a phantasmagoria, a fresco of real and imaginary characters revolving around a single point of focus: the painter Klimt. You see images in the film as if it were Klimt himself who is seeing them. Or rather who is dreaming them. Because this film will be a daydream: exuberance of colours, distortion of space, extreme complexity of camera movements. It would take too long to explain the processes I intend to use in order to record this era, one of the richest, most contradictory and most disturbing in the history of humanity.’Read More »

  • Raoul Ruiz – Klimt [Director’s Cut] (2006)

    Synopsis
    Ruiz, in an a propos to the film: ‘Above all this film should not be seen as a biography of the painter Gustav Klimt (what these days we call a ‘biopic’). It is indeed a fantasy or, if you prefer, a phantasmagoria, a fresco of real and imaginary characters revolving around a single point of focus: the painter Klimt. You see images in the film as if it were Klimt himself who is seeing them. Or rather who is dreaming them. Because this film will be a daydream: exuberance of colours, distortion of space, extreme complexity of camera movements. It would take too long to explain the processes I intend to use in order to record this era, one of the richest, most contradictory and most disturbing in the history of humanity.’Read More »

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