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Intelligent vision of our possible future
What is "Rollerball"? An action movie? A science-fiction movie? A social-critic movie? I guess a bit of everything. And it succeeds on every level. It is an action movie for its well made action sequences, but it is also a sci-fi movie and at the same time it is a critic of our society, especially the society we have today which comes nearer and nearer to what is described in "Rollerball".
Yes, "Rollerball" isn't really about the game and the action. "Rollerball" is about the worth of individuality and individual effort and a warning about not letting higher powers in the economy take our freedom away. "Rollerball" is about a globalised corporate society and why this isn't good for humanity. Guess where we are today... Right, in the globalised corporate society. Or at least almost. They just have to abolish the governments now.
Therefore "Rollerball" is not a film about violence or just a stupid action flick, it is a deeply philosophical and sociological films. One could also say that it is about heroes, for what are heroes than individuals who stand out from the masses in a positive way? Freedom cannot be achieved through collectivism and that is where Karl Marx got it all wrong.
And that is where we have to watch out. For our globalised, capitalistic, free-market-society can easily lead to oligarchy and dictatorship of the rich. I even fear that this is almost the case in the USA. Both ways can go wrong. Capitalism is good, as long as there is really a competition and when it doesn't go to far (for then we have oligarchy and predator capitalism). Socialism is good, as long as it only protects the individual from exploitation by other individuals and doesn't try to control everyone (for then we have totalitarian socialism).
"Rollerball" gives us a warning. Best we take it seriously, or else "Rollerball" might come true.
One of the most intelligent Sci-Fi-Films of all times
I really do love this film. The idea, the adaption, the actors, the script, the music, the pacing, everything is just great, almost to the point of perfection. I will not go into spoilers, but this is really one of the most intelligent films I have ever seen. It makes you think. There are different classes of good films. There are films which give you great laughs. There are films which give you a good time. And there are films which haunt your minds. I prefer the third class of good films. Gattaca is definitely one of them, even one of the best of them. Personally, I just can't understand, why or how anyone cannot like this film. Yes, it is slow and yes, there is almost no excitement. But this film isn't about fast pacing or excitement. I would be disappointed, if it was fast paced or exciting. This film is not meant to be that way. And anyone who defines a good film=exciting and fast pacing has no taste at all. Good films are defined through their stories, their ideas, their images and their acting. And Gattaca has full marks there.
Dark City (1998)
The Best Scifi of the Ninetees
This is probably the best Sci-Fi-Film of the Ninetees. Matrix is good, but this film is better. Both deal with the same question: What is reality? Not only was Dark City first, it also handles the subject much better and more adult than Matrix. Also its conclusion is far better than the one of Matrix.
Not only does this film deal with reality, it also deals with humanity, something which lacks Matrix. What makes us humans? To quote Dr. Schreber from the film "Are we more than just the sum of our Experiences?" This film is slowpaced, but not boring at all. And it deserves the title: Dark. The film is dark, "noir" and this gives the film a great atmosphere. The darkness and coldness of the strangers is in contrast to the bright light of the sun created by John Murdoch in the end.
This film is very philosophic, which I like. The best films are those which help us to think and this one clearly is such a film. Something which is needed in our society of marionettes and idiotic consumers who know more than anyone else before in history but who lack the ability to truly think.
The show down was a little weak, but the film made this up again at the very end with the last meeting between Murdoch and Mr. Hand. I remember Murdoch's words well and he speaks of a truth which is sometimes forgotten: What makes us human is not to be found in our heads, our brains and our minds.
The Passion of the Christ (2004)
A film like it was never made before...
"The Passion" came into cinemas in Switzerland on 18th March and I went to watch it Friday, 19th March. I have read before all the reviews about this film and I expected it to be very brutal and also realistic. Of course I also looked forward to finally use my knowlegde of Latin. So I went there, sat in the cinema and watched. And when I came out of it, everything was different.
Hear in IMDB there are a lot of positive comments from people from the USA. But over here in Switzerland and elsewhere in Europe, this film had almost everywhere negative comments and reviews. But after I watched it myself, I can't understand what all those people complained about. The only thing which you could possibly complain about is all the blood and gore, but this is understandable, I myself know people who couldn't watch this film. But everything else that was said is just not true.
A big fuss was made about this film being antisemitic. Now what was antisemitic in this film? OK, Jesus was hit and spat on by Jews, but the Romans were worse than this. They really enjoyed hitting Jesus almost to death and afterwards mocking and torturing him again. The Jews were pretty civilized compared to the Romans. The Jews only accused Jesus for blasphemy and demanded his death on the cross, but the people torturing and nailing Jesus to the cross were Romans and not Jews. And there are a lot of Jews who actually act in a very good way. Like Simon from Cyrennae, the woman giving water to Jesus and of course Maria Magdalena, Maria, the mother of Jesus, and John who all were Jews.
And about all the gore: Now I finally understand what this must have meant. You read this events in the bible and just say: "OK, now what? Probably hurt, but hey, there are surely worse pains than this?" But after watching this film, I truly understand how painful this must have been. I am acctually surprised that Jesus didn't die earlier, like on the way out of the city.
In Europe a lot of people complained because of this. It was often said in reviews that it is unmodern to believe that such pain was necessary to save us. Some even said that it is not good that this film makes us think about ourselves. One reviewer even said: "These people are so misguided by this film. Now they acctually believe that they are sinners and need salvation!" But isn't this what Christianity is about? Without this, Christianity wouldn't be Christianity, right? And Gibson made a film about the last 12 hours in the live of Jesus according to the gospel and there it clearly says that Jesus had to die because of our sins. So, what do you make such a fuss about? This is the core-message of the Christian believe and when someone makes a film based on this, it would be wrong to cut it out just because some people don't like the message of Christianity.
Gibson tried to make an accurate account of Jesus last hours, based on the information given in the gospel. He succeeded. This is the reason for this film, not something else. Gibson made what he said he would make. So, what do you complain about? If you don't like it, don't watch the film or make your own film! A director can do with his film what he wants, as can a writer or an artist. This is called artistic freedom. And "The Passion of the Christ" is truly a work of art. And as I said in the headline, it is film like it never was made before. This film is not for entertaining, it is a piece of art and something to think about. If you only like films who tell you the same oppinion as you have or who possess the intellectual level of a five-year-old child, don't watch this film.
My vote: 10/10. One of the most courageous and greatest pieces of art ever made. Chapeau, Monsieur Gibson.
Die Brücke (1959)
One of the best war films ever!!!
I've just managed to get this movie on DVD and watched it. After that, I just sat there and couldn't get up. I wasn't really shocked by the violence (it's all in black-white and there are films who have a lot more violence) but by the conclusion of the film, the meaningless of the fight of these teenage boys. They were just boys, dreaming to be heroes and now they had to face the bloody reality of WWII. One after another of them dies while they are defending this bridge only to learn at the end that their fight was meaningless, because the command has all the time planned to let the brigde explode instead of defending it. This is probably one of the best anti-war films ever made. It really shows the meaningless of war. It is also very interesting because it shows the other side, the side of the Germans. I think, sometimes we only see the side of the winners and forget that also the Germans were just humans (in this case just children). Perhaps this is also a reason why I like this film, only "Das Boot" shows also in a very good way the german side. I recommend for everyone to watch this film.
End of Days (1999)
Very thrilling and one of the best Bad-guys ever!!!
Wow, what a film! The story is weird, but I like weird stories. And this one was weirder than anything that I have seen. I don't believe that something like that actually would happen, but it is an interesting idea. Gabriel Byrne plays the devil very good. No, not only very good, but absolutely fantastic! He always has this diabolic smile on his face and looks really cool with it. Even if I don't consider Schwarzenegger a very good actor, he wasn't bad in this film. Sorry, but I can't understand why people think this film is bad. I give it 8/10. The action-sequences and explosions are great, the whole story and script also. As I said, Byrne was the right choice in this film to play the devil. And also the ending of the film was good, not just the usual Hollywood-happy-ending like in other films: Schwarzenegger kills himself to save the others (of course this is a parallel to the crucification of Jesus).
The most disappointing film I ever saw!
I've read the books a Million times and watched FOTR a thousand times. Then I went to the cinema to watch TTT. When I came out, I felt awful. I just had the greatest disappointment of my life! I just think, how bad ROTK must be, when they try to squeeze all the things they missed in TTT into it!
Since when can you ride down a mountain with almost 90 degrees angle? And since when can you ride into an army with long spears without being killed? And didn't this white stick of Gandalf just look like plastic? And what about these unnecessary changes in the film? When they would have left out these, they could have put the scene with Saruman and Gandalf and also Shelob's Layer in the film! I just hope that they don't leave out the scenes in ROTK where they go back to the shire and kill Saruman and also the scene at the grey havens. That would be really bad.. But I'll buy the Extended Edition of TTT and I will also watch ROTK more than once in the cinema. I just hope that I don't get bored until then...