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La La Land (2016)
Here's to the one who dream
Unhappy is a person who never dared to dream. This world and our mind have the endless opportunities and we have to be really miserable to even try to suppress those opportunities, because without our perfectional ideas and notions of life and how we should live it, we become empty bodies and let physiology do its thing. Only when you dare to dream you let yourself flow in a world of pure imagination and possibilities, you create your individuality and slightly optimistic and romantic perception of life which helps you get through the tough times and standard routines of daily life. Having the hope that someday you can achieve whatever you have pictured in your head gives you wings and positives to go on. And this one's for dreamers out there who dared to dream and achieved something in their life, for those who are on their way to do so and for those who are too scared to try. Yes, it may go in a completely different direction, but you will never know until you try. Sometimes life has better things to offer than we can imagine and it may lead to something wonderful and new. Lumiere brothers had only visions in their heads and ambitions when they invented film as we know it now, being inspired by Thomas Edison and others. Would they have done it if they never chased the dream? You know the answer. The answer is A Trip to the Moon, City Lights, Casablanca, Space Odyssey, The Godfather, Schindler's List, Lord of the Rings and La La Land. The latter one is a perfect addition to the history of cinema, absolutely deserving of all the praise it receives. Would I change anything in it? Not a single word or move. From the astonishing play of colors and tones to the hopeful and sparkling eyes of the characters were captured wonderfully by one of the bravest and inspiring dreamers of modern Hollywood - Damien Chazelle. Dreaming is simple, he made it clear to himself and to the audience with this movie. No tricky turns and twists in the story line, no complicated dialogues. Everything is clear to the point that it lets you just enjoy the whole spectacle with a bit of nostalgia of your own forgotten dreams, of where you are right now in your life and where are you heading to. All of this is spiced up with magical hidden character called music. From City of Stars to the last note of Mia & Sebastian's Theme, the soundtrack is wonderful. It is cheerful, it is sad, it is hopeful and simply mesmerizing. Undoubtedly the best film in recent years deserving of all the golden statues including the main one for best picture, proving that the best movie of the year can be about a simple subject and not about a slumdog boy who becomes millionaire or a king struggling with his speech, or American heroes saving lives in Iran or elsewhere. This movie is relatable to everyone. Although dreamers or la la landers are considered to be out of this world and not aware of what is happening, we are all still foolishly, with a bit of hope and enthusiasm, trying to chase our dreams and create our own world of reality. So here's to the one who dream.
Vera Drake (2004)
Crime that was meant to help
Character driven period-drama about a woman who commits a crime without being conscious about that. Vera Drake is a selfless woman who is completely devoted to and loved by her working class family. She spends her days doting on them and caring for her sick neighbor and elderly mother. However, she also secretly visits women and helps them induce miscarriages for unwanted pregnancies. While the practice itself was illegal in 1950s England, Vera sees herself as simply helping women in need, and always does so with a smile and kind words of encouragement. When the authorities finally find her out, Vera's world and family life rapidly unravel. Spotless performance by Imelda Staunton, British acting at its best.
Trespass Against Us (2016)
Another raw Fassbender performance
Another astonishing and raw performance from Michael Fassbander, who plays an uneducated father of the family desperately trying to unchain himself from his father's robber-gang. The brutal moment when you realize you are in under influence of something evil or bad, but you're incapable of changing things and you get mad at the whole world. But the fault is on you, because you weren't strong enough to free yourself out of the chains in the first place. You have the choice to change it now, you have obligations towards your family and you have to choose what is best for them now, because you've lost your chance to help yourself.
La jaula de oro (2013)
Fantastic piece of Mexican cinema!
How big must one dream? The road leading to your dream is like a long tunnel. You see the fading little spark of light behind you and shiny dream-white light of hope on the other side. But in-between you have this black unilluminated path to walk through. Does it worth it? What are you ready to sacrifice for your imaginary life? Will you have the courage to go all the way till the end? The movie is about a group of teenagers from Central America trying to immigrate to the Golden Cage (i.e. United States). During the whole film you see miserable faces hoping to seek a better world of opportunities. Do they fear? Do they struggle? Their eyes will expose the truth. Was it all worth it? Excellent film!
Anthony Hopkins is back in the game...
Give the director full freedom and he will make the movie of his lifetime. I mean that worked with so many directors and they created their best pictures while relying on themselves only. That's how most of the classic movies were born. Psycho is one of them and while working on bringing that movie to life Alfred Hitchcock had the support of very few people. But the only true support he needed was his wife's Alma. Hitchcock is not so much about making of the film Psycho, but the relationship of Alma and Hitch and how they completed one another. Its engaging and sometimes intense. Hopkins and Mirren are at their best in this one and there's no way you want to miss the pleasure of their company. Great supporting cast including Scarlett Johansson, Toni Collette, James D'Arcy and Jessica Biel. Shot in the style of live-action documentary, this movie is probably the best portrayal of a legend called Alfred Hitchcock. He's like any great artist - impossible to live with but worth the effort.
Transform to Lars von Trier for 2 hours.
''Melancholia'' - Lars von Trier's best work to date. The movie is about the nature of depression and how 2 sisters go through it. Kirsten Dunst (Justine) accepts her melancholia by the time a planet that was hiding behind the sun threatens to collide the Earth, while other sister (Charlotte Gainsbourg - Clair) is afraid to face the reality and her own personal emotions. If you have any little doubt whether you want to watch this movie or not, you better don't, because this is not for everyone, and if you still want to see this then prepare yourself for what you're going to face. The movie is all about how Lars Von Trier sees the world, the people and the dearness between them. It's beautiful, it's real, it's disgusting, it's terrifying - it all depends on how you want to perceive this film. The opening and the ending scenes are mesmerizing! The music used in the film is taken from Wagner's ''Tristan and Isolde'' opera which fits the movie perfectly. Cinematography - amazes. Special effects, not for 3D, but are very realistic and breathtaking. Kirsten Dunst gives us her best performance to date, forget the girl in Spider-man, this is a new level for her. She finally proves us how good she can be with the right movie choice. An Oscar nomination is on its way... I'm not a fan of Lars and his movies, but this one had me at the edge of my seat to the last minute. 10/10