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By and large, individual genres do not mix well in cinema. For this reason, most filmmakers tend to make films belonging to a particular genre. However, there have been exceptions to this role. One can cite the films by Alfred Hitchcock where comedy has been mixed with suspense and thriller. French film 'The Murderer Lives at Number 21' also belongs to this category of films where one can find an absolutely perfect harmony of comedy with suspense. In this film, Clouzot has used all tricks up his sleeve to entertain his audiences up to the hilt. There is enormous interest to be taken in all scenes as Clouzot's characters speak a lot about France and its people. French culture especially mannerisms of ordinary French people have been vividly described. A simple visit to the guest house would suffice to know how it is difficult for the police to arrest a killer who has put the entire city in trouble because of his foolishness. As a family film, 'L'Assassin habite au 21' does enormous justice to the topic portrayed in the film. However, those viewers who have placed bets on the ending would be disappointed.
French director Franju was always interested in directing a more personalized version of Judex.He got interested in this film after having enjoyed Louis Feuillade's earlier version.In many ways, Georges Franju's version is different from that of Louis Feuillade. It is also more entertaining as he chose to film Judex as a collective story of different episodes about a judge who wants to get rid of corruption in order to bring goodness around him.The victory of good over evil remains the basic premise of the film. Franju was able to achieve viewers' satisfaction as everything about the film has the stamp of a master's carefully crafted creation namely witty dialogs,sinister intrigue and excellent performances by all actors.Judex is also going to charm film professionals as it has many creative elements which are useful for people working in the field of cinema.How can one create wonders by perfecting the screenplay is something which one can learn by watching Judex over and over again.
Human beings are strange as they are engaged in a constant tussle with their alter egos. There is no rest for them as their minds are plagued with constant thoughts about a perpetual struggle which would be somebody's gain at the cost of somebody's loss. This strangeness enables them to emerge as powerful persons with absolute control over their lives. South Korean film 'The Foul King' is about the secret life of an ordinary bank employee who makes the most of his after work wresting sessions to emerge as a physically as well as emotionally stronger human being. It is nice to watch our hero as the tough guy in appearance but soft at heart. However, a mean bank boss is going to experience the wrath of audiences for having used unparalleled physical force against a weak person. Every act of success comes with a price tag attached to it. For the film's protagonist Dae-Ho,it is the lack of romance which shatters him the most. However,director Kim Jee Woon has constructed his imaginative screenplay in such a manner that the weak man is able to redeem his lost honor when his bully father recognizes his physical prowess. Although featuring WWF style wresting, 'The Foul King' appears more a drama film due to its pacing which is very regular. Its universal appeal lies in the fact that all countries have the fair share of "The Foul King' .
Any film which starts with a train sequence promises high doses of adrenaline rush.South Korean director Lee Chang Dong made wise use of a passenger train for his début film 'Green Fish' which depicts the tumultuous life of a young man who was forced to pay a heavy price in the form of a sacrifice partially due to his family's constant bickering.Not only is the hero a fledgling struggling to gain some foothold in a hostile environment with other gangsters,the milieu of south Korean also appears to be weak and subdued if one compares it with Japanese or Chinese criminals.Green Fish is also effective as the brutal portrayal of the lives of poor people who eke out a miserable existence close to high rise apartments.Although 'Green Fish' is full of funny sequences,one particular sequence would be remembered for a long time.It involves the hero's interaction with some corrupt policemen who cheat his brother thereby forcing him to lose his money. This sequence makes us all learn that one cannot expect even an ounce of honesty from a corrupt,dishonest person.
Discrimination against handicapped people is a reprehensible practice which must end. It is caused partly due to the negative attitudes which societies propagate towards people with disabilities. Blind people are the worst hit as more than anybody's pity, they are in dire need of compassion. Italian director Dino Risi's acclaimed film "Profumo Di Donna" deals with a blind person who has never been humiliated in his life despite his infirmity. Although no blind person deserves anybody's pity, compassion is what every visually challenged person is seeking. It comes to Fausto in the form of a journey with a young man called Ciccio. This journey is important for both as it changes their perceptions about life and its importance. Living the life to the fullest seems to be the mantra of an ordinary Italian. In this Dino Risi film, this sentiment is vividly echoed in the portrayal of misanthrope Fausto by veteran Italian actor Vittorio Gassman. Watching him act as a blind man with absolute nonchalance, audiences are prepared to believe that even a strong willed blind man from army can crack up in the end.
It is hard to deny that for some narcissistic gonzos cinema is nothing less than a veritable personal fiefdom where any narcissist can shamelessly indulge in prolonged bouts of self-centeredness. It is with such a dangerous thought that one can recognize Maurice Pialat as the poster boy of this kind of explosive film making. His film 'We Won't Grow Old Together' bears too many marks of his repulsive personality that there would hardly be any viewers who would be in a healthy frame of mind to consider it as an entertaining film. Obnoxious behavior, lack of responsibility and hypocritical stance vis à vis male female relationship can be identified with ease in this film. Experienced French actors Jean Yanne and Marlène Jobert are the key reason to watch this long- métrage about a troubled relationship. They have worked too hard to portray the inner feelings of a difficult albeit creative director who was unable to strike a fine balance between his personal as well as professional life.
In many ways Mr.Dariush Mehrjui can be called one of the most mature directors of Iranian cinema.The maturity element in his films comes from his profound knowledge of philosophy.It is his familiarity with philosophical themes which enabled him to gain international recognition much ahead of other Iranian directors of international repute namely Abbas Kiarostami and Mohsen Makhmalbaf.One of his earlier films Gaav (The Cow) was voted one of the best Iranian films.In later years,it was dethroned to make room for Hamoun in 1990. It was also crowned the best Iranian film of all times.Hamoun is a challenging portrayal of difficult lives led by an Iranian intellectual couple who is unable to live in harmony.The film starts with some brilliantly shot dream like sequences which are repeated at regular intervals.What happens when a dream is over and one is forced to live a difficult life ? It is the answer to this question which awaits patient viewers in Hamoun which boasts of a meaningful, well nuanced acting performance by late Iranian actor Khosro Shakibai (1944-2008)
South African film 'Tsotsi' presents the stark reality of shanty towns where youngsters resort to violent crimes as the only desirable way of moving forward in life. There is not much for them to do as they while away their time dancing over a couple of drinks in a nearby bar or killing innocent people for money. It is said that nobody can change anybody in life. It is only the circumstances which have the power to change an individual. This effect is viewed in this film as a young hoodlum with a troubled past decides to question his selfish ways. One has to marvel at the manner in which violence has been portrayed in the film. The use of physical force is very raw as no character hesitates in being trigger happy at the drop of a hat. For directing Tsotsi, South African director Gavin Hood chose the only novel written by veteran author Athol Fugard which portrays how there are moments in life when even an extremely violent person can experience feelings of genuine love.
British film 'Gregory's Girl' is about the innocent world of young people who learn about different ways of the world uniquely from their own ingenuous perspective. The film is set in a small Glasgow school where everybody knows each other. It is a challenging sphere where one might become fascinated with sex but true love is what everybody seems to be searching. Some are able to get a taste of love whereas some have to wait a little longer or are even forced to make plans to go as far as Caracas to find love. In this Bill Forsyth film, the main focus is on the game of football as the film revolves around this energetic sport where even a girl gets all opportunities to be hailed as a great football player. Suspense is maintained throughout the film as nobody can guess who is going to end up as 'Gregory's Girl' till the end of the film.
Anybody who has anything to do with the creation of a major blockbuster finds a prominent place in 'The Player'. The ubiquitous art versus commercial distinction has not been ignored by director Robert Altman as there are numerous references about this dichotomy in his film. 'The Player' has all the right elements to attract viewers who like cinema either as a form of entertainment or as a form of art. It is with utter amazement one learns that even people in the business of making films speak of films citing examples of great films such as 'Touch of evil' etc. It is no surprise that the entire film is soaked in the colors of cinema with numerous posters of famous films adorn the walls. One of this film's strength lies in its having a gripping story which leaves no room for any kind of dull moment. This effect is achieved through jumping across genres throughout the film namely thriller, comedy and suspense. Director Robert Altman firmly ensures that his film 'The Player' works at many levels. Firstly, it gives viewers a very clear idea of how Hollywood works. One gets to see Hollywood cinema's big fishes hobnobbing at parties with other important people whose job is to break or make the career of these big people. Everybody has just one thing on mind-how to make a successful film which would earn a lot of money ? This sentiment is prominently echoed until the end of the film. Probably, this is one of the best reasons to watch this successful film.
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