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Es werden Posts vom Juli, 2014 angezeigt.

Sholay (Ramesh Sippy, 1975)

Two petty criminals are hired by a former police officer to protect his village from an evil gang.
This is the first of the 'classic' Bollywood movies from the early days that I watched. There is an acceptable amount of singing, the over-the-top comedic acting and the Western-inspired morals. Most of the scenes seem to have been lifted straight out of the American films and some suspiciously simple comedy films - I suspect mostly cartoons and silent comedies.
Things become more original when our two heroes settle in the village, fall in love and act so incredibly dumb that I couldn't help myself smiling. The characters are grotesque most of the time. The screenwriter came up with a very exaggerated idea for the old police officer, but it still worked nicely.

There are some of the more absurd details and the situations in the film that are interesting for pointing out. They are all here for comedic relief and I was trying to find with some 'typical' comedy siutatio…

Morocco (Joseph von Sternberg, 1930)

A legionnaire falls in love with a nightclub singer.
Possibly best known for it's ending, the film has a strange pacing - I haven't seen that many Sternberg films yet, but I do remember that he seems way more interested in the inner life of the characters than in the display of any kind of action. The story is there alright, but Sternberg's transformation to the screen makes it strangely static - an effect I noticed even more in "Shanghai Gesture".

1.1 00:03 Legion arrives in the city. The legionnaire (Cooper) checks out the women. He is scolded by his sergeant for that.


1.2 00:06 A nightclub singer (Dietrich) and a rich gentleman (Menjou) arrive on the boat. She ignores his advances.


1.3 00:09 A large nightclub. The gentleman is introduced as important. People gossip. Cooper arrives in the nightclub.


1.4 00:12 Dietrich in her dressing room, getting ready. Fights with the club owner.


1.5 00:16 Dietrich goes on stage and sings…

Ivan's childhood / Ivanovo detstvo (Andrei Tarkovsky, 1962)

Young Ivan goes on dangerous missions for the Russians behind the lines of the German Nazi army still having traces of childhood in him.

As all the other Tarkovsky films this one has been discussed to death in a plethora of books, articles and possibly anywhere else. There are plenty of good analysis websites out there: Jean Paul Sartre's comments are here.

As I went through the movie I found a lot of three-layer deep-space compositions inside the 4:3 frame. Tarkovsky and Yusov's imagery consists of a lot of these setups. I collected a couple of them here - although there are way more during the course of the movie.

As Ivan is 'accepted' by his fellow comrades, he drinks from a glass. All their gazes focus on the center of the picture. It seems a classical deep setup in three layers.
Here there is the commander trying to prevent Ivan from going back behind the lines. The composition is more extreme, with the foreground cut off and the space between the kid and the com…

The Killing Fields (Roland Joffé, 1984)

An American journalist witnesses the atrocities of the Khmer Rouge hostile regime first hand in Cambodia.
The story is gripping and interesting. It switches point of view from Schanberg's more detached perspective to Dith Pran's spectacular flight from Cambodia into a refugee camp. The film is so densely packed with atmosphere and many details that I couldn't look away for the two and a half hours. The ending is touching and doesn't feel over the top at all. I believed all the horrible events Dith Pran had to live through. (There is a brilliant young John Malkovich, too)
It is also a film about Western ignorance and without being moralistic about it, the film makes a very clear point. We just don't care, after all. Even when we pretend we do.
The cinematography was stunning, so was the editing. I decided to look at the first battle scene around minute 27. The Khmer are attacking and Schanberg has wants to document this for his newspaper. They arrive on site in an …

The Descendants (Alexander Payne, 2011)

His wife in a coma, husband discovers she had an affair - he goes to confront the lover.
 Descendants is a quieter film, trying to amplify the subtleties of the luxury problems of an upper-class family in Hawaii with native forefathers. Although it has a nice story, at first I was confused by the fact that George Clooney was cast. Although he does well what he does it took me more than an hour to forget his larger-than-life persona with all the clichés that go with it. Shaylene Woodley was fantastic, had no idea she was already famous. Darn.
Once I got around that, though, I could really enjoy the film. Going through the second time, I am interested in how the different stories interweave.



Matt & Wife
Matt & Daughters
Matt & Family
00:02
Wife is in a coma




00:03


Scottie has problems at school and Matt needs to apologize


00:07




Will he/and the family sell the piece of ground? For a billion dollars? (Yes)
00:11
Wife's condition is det…