We'll tackle any film foreign or otherwise, paying exclusive attention to Arthouse, Indie & Cult features. Selected up to the minute News will also be given prominence.


January 27, 2011

Vivre sa vie








Director - Jean-Luc Godard

Genre - Drama


Starring Anna Karina, who was married to Godard at that time, this is a moving, real as nails picture about a girl slowly falling into the inescapable grasp of vice's long claws. Our attentions were unshaken as Godard let his love and muse command the screen with her graceful beauty. It was almost unbearably discomfiting when we see Nana (Anna Karina) gets more and more desperate, her soul replaced by nothingness. A life snuffed out little by little at the mercy of society's indifference. Godard's direction is masterful without being overbearing, stamping his mark all over the reels without surrendering the story. More than any other pictures about the plight of hookers, this Godard masterpiece is the most haunting, most unrelenting in its pursuit of telling it as it is.

5 STARS!

All about Vivre sa vie

January 19, 2011

El Topo








Director - Alejandro Jodorowsky

Genre - Adventure/Fantasy/Western


John Lennon was reported to have loved this and adored Jodorowsky. Whether this has anything to do with Lennon watching it when being as high as a kite is debatable. What we feel though is that this isn't Jodorowsky's best work. It is not as confident as his other pictures. Jodorowsky himself plays the lead here as a gunfighter who challenges various enemies to duel with him, in a pursuit to be the best there is. As his journey brings him closer to fruition, the glory he sought is no longer as apparent. 'El Topo' as he is called learns humility and is enlightened in the process. What we regret here is the lack of good acting in the part of 'El Topo' by Jodorowsky. The changes 'El Topo' goes through mentally should be felt deeply through his facial expressions and Jodorowsky is as wooden as an IKEA study table in that aspect. We did like his leather duds though. A cult film which will serve as a curious spectacle rather than a fine watch.

2.5 STARS!

All about El Topo

January 12, 2011

The Human Centipede








Director - Tom Six

Genre - Horror/Thriller


There are those amongst us who are capable of doing evil, horrific deeds. This may be a fictional story but for us it represents a culmination of all the worst, beastly nature inherent in our depilated society. In this film, a genius surgeon decides to create a new breed of life, naming it 'The Human Centipede'. Holding two attractive girls and a Japanese businessman hostage to do with as he pleases, this mad doctor begins his experiment, realizing his terrifying imagination little by little to the horror of his guests of (dis)honor. We are not exactly fans of gore and mindless bloodletting but let us assure you that Tom Six the director did an amazing job here, pulling back the violence when necessary and letting it reign when it counts. In short, this is a classy take on a subject which if left in the wrong hands, would turn as vile as stepping on a pile of fresh vomit. Here, we felt that we were always in safe hands, that the director knew exactly what he was setting us up for. Dieter Laser the actor who played said villain was suitably creepy too, with a face which will scare away even the most ferocious canines.

5 STARS!

All about The Human Centipede

January 3, 2011

Lola








Director - Rainer Werner Fassbinder

Genre - Comedy/Drama


Rainer Werner Fassbinder was one of the world's most prolific directors (41 films in 13 years!) and it is amazing to discover the gems he made despite the rapid work ethic he employed. Famously, he only allowed one take and this factor for us is how the honesty of his actors' performances are captured, how his films seem to bluntly mirror the ugly side of human nature. 'Lola', the title refers to a hooker who catches the eye of a goody two shoes building commissioner (Armin Mueller-Stahl). What Fassbinder has portrayed slyly in this picture is his often "half empty glass" view of love. The actress who played Lola (Barbara Sukowa) is just amazing, her various emotions lock and loaded on the pores of her face, ready to be utilized at any moment. Fassbinder had drenched the movie in bold candy colors, a stylistic maneuver which made pretty damn sure its uniqueness remain unquestionable. when an auteur's work is so rich in dishing social commentary and directorial style, you have to give it ample recognition.

4.5 STARS!

All about Lola