Rome, 1984, Aria is nine-year-old girl. On the verge of divorce, Aria's infantile and selfish parents are too preoccupied with their careers and extra-marital affairs to properly tend to ... See full summary »
Documentary look at doomed male prostitutes in Prague, ages 15 to 18, who troll at the public swimming pool, the train station, a video arcade, and a disco. After the boys talk about how ... See full summary »
After his mother's death, 17-year-old Sven moves in with his dad Achim, a taxi driver, who had divorced his mother several years earlier. It is not easy for Achim to get used to an ... See full summary »
Torsten C. Fischer
Klaus J. Behrendt,
Gabriela Maria Schmeide
A particularly vivid and realistic portrayal of the emotional rupture between a father recently released from jail and his 12 year-old son, following a dark family tragedy that no one has strength enough to confront.
José Ramón Lafita,
Reine is supposed to go to a summer camp called 'Childrens island' but decides to remain in Stockholm over the summer while his mother is working at a hospital. She thinks he is at the camp... See full summary »
Áron is a happy child in his family. But at some point things take a different turn, and his mother starts to lose her health rapidly. As this happens, the man in charge decides what's best... See full summary »
The dysfunctional twenty-three years old Sarah takes her six year old natural son Jeremiah from the home of his beloved foster parents with the support of the social service to live with her. Along the years, the boy shares her insane and lowlife style and is introduced to booze and drugs and mentally, physically and sexually abused by Sarah, her lovers and her religiously fanatic family. Written by
Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
I can't say I "liked" this film, yet I can say it was better than I expected. Actress/Director Asia Argento is both the best and worst thing about this film. As director, she presented a story that had flow and made sense, and made a couple of very good choices as to when to use surrealistic and stunt casting tricks in service of the story. She also got excellent performances out of the cast generally. Except...
as an actress, she kept taking me out of the scene. If your reaction is the same as mine, just tune her acting out and let the story unfold.
I would also say that JT Leroy, writer of the prose on which this film is based, was involved in the production. Via letter, he introduced the film at various film festivals. The claim that this is a true story, that this is "my life" that Leroy makes, tends to inoculate the film from a lot of criticism. How can anybody say "the ending wasn't much of an ending" or "the mom was really over-the-top" if the person who lived the story says the movie is "true". In other words, a movie has to have its own truth, whether the story it tells is true or not. And I guess I think this is "7" because for all it's flaws (Argento's acting, skips in time that leave characters undeveloped, and a general lack of roundness to the characters that really could have been fixed), the movie did seem to find it's own truth.
For that I credit director Argento, young actors Jimmy Bennett, Dylan Sprouse and Cole Sprouse (who knew the Sprouse twins could act? Very well done), sharp (if stereotypical) cameo turns by Peter Fonda, Winona Ryder, & Ornella Muti (whom I took to be Lena Olin). Also props to John Robinson, who played Jeremiah's teenaged uncle -- an underused character in the film. Except I can't say that because this movie is a "true story". See? That's frustrating.
Oh, the content is strong, this is not for kids, and a LOT of adults will need to quit watching at some point. But it is overall worth the effort, if you have a strong stomach and can control your rage at the awfulness of the life depicted.
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