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Baraka (1992)
93 out of 105 people found the following review useful:
A true GAIA experience, 3 May 1999

When I first experienced (that's the most striking word for it) this movie at the Gothenburg Film Festival 1994, I was truly amazed. Never before - or since - have I had such an over all explain-it-all feeling after a show.

Ron Fricke has made a documentary about the World today for a day: starting at dawn with monkeys in hot springs in Japan, and the morning rituals of various religions. This is followed by the awakening of the human race, both in the big cities and on the country side. Brilliantly edited together follows every aspect of human daily life combined with the general changes of the planet itself and all the ecological systems upon it.

The over all glue of the story are the various religious rituals. Maybe this is my personal interpretation, being a teacher of Religion, but the only time giver, except for the turning of the sun, are the praying times and times of worship peoples practice around the globe.

My comparison of the film to the GAIA idea (that the Earth as a whole being a unit, a living organism) is detectable both in the way every different cultures shown are found to be very similar to one another, as well as the speeded up people at side walks and zebra crossings look very much like the stream of blood in the veins of an organism.

All in all this is a marvellous movie pointing out both the uniqueness of the individual and the unity with all people. Go see it - now!

2 out of 3 people found the following review useful:
Best Swedish movie of the nineties - by a debutant!, 13 November 1998

Amal (pronounced [o:mol]) is a small town just west of the great lake Vanern in the south of Sweden. But it could be any town of similar size anywhere in the world. A town where teenagers are either too young or too old to fit into the weekend activities offered - and therefore bored. Instead they just hang out by the burger place down town, drinking booze (home made, of course...) and driving mopeds. The goal for the evening is either to get very drunk or to "score". Probably both...

In such a town we get to hang out with a few of the youngsters. Elin, a 14 year old girl trying to look older by wearing heavy make up and hanging out with her older sister and her boyfriend. On the other hand there is Agnes. She is also 14, but no one wants to hang out with her. Instead of being her friends, the other teenagers make fun of her, calling her a dyke (she doesn't have a boyfriend...). Her over protective parents don't make it any easier for her to get a social life.

Agnes is secretly in love with Elin, something she writes in her computer diary. A diary witch happens to be read by Elin and her sister on Agnes' failure of a birthday party. The rumour is confirmed. And Elin is feeling confused...

This lovingly told story of being a teenager passing through puberty hits right on the spot. It's all "been there, done that": all the juvenile "first times". Lukas Moodysson has managed to tell a lovely story of friendships lost and found, with a great sense of humour.

The story of being young.

John Claesson (rating: 10/10)