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this list includes films i give a 7 or an 8 to and know are amazing but need to re-watch... there's a stack of films here that rate 9 (or what i call an unconfirmed 10) or consider a minor masterpiece, but quite certain with a re-watch will go up to 10 and inclusion into my "masterpiece collection" list - http://www.imdb.com/list/ge1jI_qfTsg/
at the end of the day this list is to confirm these films are genius... some may go down in rating as well but still be great films... i will regularly update this list, adding and removing titles, so come back 4a visit 8]
aiming to buy classics that will look / sound superior in blu ray over dvd... some i alrdy own on dvd but will slowly transfer my fave films to blu ray... esp editions with excellent special features
9-10/10 & added to my "masterpiece collection" list
An absolute masterpiece from Philippines, inspired by Fyodor Dostoevsky's "Crime & Punishment" but told through real events & political / social problems of the director's country
This is the first 4 hour movie that didn't even feel that length, perfectly paced, beautifully shot, deep & reflective, gripping & awe inspiring this is the human condition in it's most naturalistic state
Can't wait to see another one of this brilliant film makers films which have running times up to 11 hours a masterpiece that will take some time to wipe form your memory
Il gattopardo (1963)
A masterful epic from Visconti that will only get better each viewing
Based on the best selling novel by Giuseppe Tomasi di Lampedusa, an epic story of 1860's Sicily focusing around a rich family's dealings with war, power, love & adapting to change from the old ways to new
Starring Burt Lancaster in his career highlight performance, plus sex symbols Alain Delon & Claudia Cardinale in solid performances as always
Been wanting to watch this film for years & glad i finally have, but it requires a re-watch to truly appreciate it's depth
Young Frankenstein (1974)
A classic spoof by the original master of the style
Been wanting to see this comedy classic for years now & with recently being sick at home, i finally had that chance and boy it was a lotta fun! delivered by the originator of spoofs Mel Brooks with a film that's up there with his classic Blazing Saddles (1974) and in fact released the same year which is quite amazing considering both are so great! starring Gene Wilder as a teacher / scientist & grandson of the Dr. Frankenstein who first reanimated a corpse back into real life, Marty Feldman as the hilarious English spoken hunchback who is also the grandson of the famous hunchback who worked alongside the original Dr. Frankenstein, Teri Garr as the sexy assistant & Peter Boyle as the monster with a soft heart the young Franenstein doesn't want to follow in his grandfather's footsteps but with news of a will from his grandfather, he ends up traveling to Transylvania and what eventuates is classic Mel Brooks, with so many golden moments & an awesome spoof on the horror genre
High Noon (1952)
9/10 & added to my masterpiece collection list
Another deep banking that i managed to get through while being sick recently, this time a classic western that delivered in spades quite ahead of it's time on many facets really
It was the first western to not start with a big orchestral piece at the start of the film, going for a more subdued opening guitar number "Do Not Forsake Me, Oh My Darlin" by composer Dimitri Tiomkin & sung by Tex Ritter another new addition to the genre was the lack of dialog to portray the scenes, which later on Sergio Leone mastered in his spaghetti westerns, especially Once Upon A Time In The West it was also shot in black & white which at this stage was unusual as all the the westerns coming out then were in colour to portray the glorious wild west, but the Austrian director worked closely with closely with cinematographer Floyd Crosby to get a bleak look with no frills, more a documentary / newsreel / raw feel than the glossy films of the time this was possibly the first western not done by an American director, many thought it would fail cause how could a foreigner get the genre that is so embedded in American culture well they were wrong! the screenplay by the to-be- blacklisted writer Carl Foreman with a brilliant script that says just as much about the state of America at the peak of the anti- communism times of the 50′s than what it does about human beings as a whole
The story starts out with 3 outlaws who roll into town one morning (Lee Van Cleef as a young lad) who are waiting for their leader Frank Miller, a legendary outlaw who has history with the sheriff & many town folk Gary Cooper is the retiring sheriff / newly wed who wont give up on his town with these hoodlums, in a performance that re- invigorated his career in his early 50's which won him his 2nd academy award Grace Kelly with her first major performance at the age of 22 as the sheriff's new bride but torn between her love for him & avoiding a bloody conflict by staying in town Lloyd Bridges as the self indulgent deputy who is only there to serve justice if it serves his own means Katy Jurado in another first - a Mexican women who has a great amount of power in the town with her business, something that had never been done in westerns prior & delivered with such a striking performance
What unfolds is a bleak look at life in the great west, with a constant eye on the time, as Frank Miller is arriving on the train at high noon Gary Cooper tries to round up as many troops to fight these villains but he is confronted with a town who is either scared, good friends with Frank Miller & his sidekicks or simply don't want to put themselves out for their own selfish reasons what concludes is a tension building film in real time, as the clock ticks closer to noon, everyone's true colours are shown & the key characters like the Sheriff, his bride, the Mexican business woman & the deputy have to decide where they stand before the clock strikes 12
A masterpiece of film making, not only for the western genre but as a whole i can see why this film is held in such high regard cause without it we may never have seen films from the likes of Sergio Leone and other foreign film makers making what was up till then an American only production with so many clichés and standards broken / re-defined, this is cinema at it's most innovative, in a genre that has had so much success up till then
Ex Machina (2015)
One of the best sci-fi's in years...
One of the best sci-fi's i've seen, great take on the robot vs human eventual existence in the realm of Blade Runner or Under The Skin more than Terminator 2 (T2), where the robot / alien wants to experience what it's like to live like a human brilliantly shot, stripped back dialog & tight mood keeping u waiting for more, amazing performances from the 3 leads Alicia Vikander, Domhnall Gleeson, Oscar Isaac
Need to see it again to finalise my thoughts & feelings towards it but i've got a strong feeling it's going to be even more engrossing 2nd time around love the minimalistic atmosphere throughout the set, the photography, the sparse soundtrack / sound design, truly captivating best sci-fi i've seen since Under The Skin & before those 2 films there hasn't been much for a long time
Nema-ye Nazdik (1990)
9/10 & added to my "masterpiece collection" list
Been banking this classic for sometime, with films of this stature I try to do a little reading up as possible so the experience is fresh without any bias what eventuated was a film like nothing else before it or after it
What this bizarre film is about is quite simple on the surface but quite complex once u get into it a film lover named Hossain Sabzian decides to imitate famous film maker Mohsen Makhmalbaf to get close with a well-to-do family but this is not for burglary or any other malicious crime, he simply wants to be respected by people, his views listened to, which in turn gives him a new turn of life, happiness & confidence from his dreary existence where he's just scraping through supporting his family
The genius of Kiarostami was not to just capture this story, but since he got onto this story early off, he filmed the initial stages of the man's arrest, the court case, then got all the key people to agree to re-enact the story leading up to his arrest what unravels is cinema like we've never seen before so fascinating to hear Sabzian's life, his story it's a film about identity, about class, about what some people will do in poverty
Kiarostami is a genius, the fact he has the ability to look outside the box of cinema & create in such a unique way is truly mesmerizing
9/10 & added to my "masterpiece collection" list
Another winner from Dreyer but i expected as much since i think every film i've seen by him is pretty much a masterpiece that's taking into consideration The Passion of Joan of Arc (1928), Vampyr (1932), Day of Wrath (1943), his final film Gertrud (1964) and now Ordet completes the string of 5 brilliant films he made from 1928- 1964 before dying at the age of 79 in 1968 he was one of the the few geniuses who wasn't given much time to make films, only 13 features in his career from as early as 1919 he was there right from the start and left with such a deep note on what can be done in cinema, that he has inspired generations to come with his meticulous detail for showing reality but in a very unusual manner
What is to be said about a story where one character believes he's the reincarnation of Jesus, yet the family think he's crazy in the early 1900s where religion ruled & love was broken cause the fathers of the 2 families have different religious practices where an atheist and his pregnant wife hopes for a boy but problems arise & all the families faith will be tested, and ultimately set the path for this very unusual and unsettling adaptation of a popular Danish play
If you haven't seen any Dreyer, you haven't experienced one of the masters of cinema who created a world & atmosphere like no other
Mad Max: Fury Road (2015)
George Miller's game changing action blockbuster
This film was great birthday viewing in 2D on the huge Hoyts Xtreme Screen @ Melbourne Central, then 2 weeks later in 3D on the huge 25m I-Max screen. with friends & family, the 3D sound & crisp visuals made for an exhilarating ride! we saw the 2D version as some of our crew weren't keen on Imax in 3D
I'm just really glad it's not Fast & the Furious in the outback as i first anticipated the film is jam packed with action sequences and real stunts with no CG, a game changer hopefully where the big studios will follow suit & go back to the old days of making something spectacular with real sets, real stunts, real explosions also it wasn't overly laden with crappy dialog or cool sequences, it plays out like a real apocalyptic "survival of the fittest" film
Another bonus was the focus on Charlize Theron as the female hero, while Tom Hardy's Mad Max plays back seat to her really there is a strong focus on females from the start right to the end which i don't mind at all but the film is called Mad Max so it's still a bit of a mystery to me why the focus was taken on Max the location they shot in Africa for the dessert scenes are amazing the costumes & the characters are all fascinating with so much detail, cinematography by John Seale and score from Junkie XL are a perfect fit which paints a very distinct and bleak dystopia world that has as much intrigue as what George Lucas has in Star Wars i wanted to know more about these different characters, their background, how this class order came to exist
At first glance I could understand the feminist remarks & how max plays a back seat But after thinking about it further, I realize that it's not as clean cut as that Tom Hardy especially in this film is like "the man with no name" from Sergio Leone's westerns & Akira Kurosawa's samurai films Sanjuro & Yojimbo This character doesn't always play the front seat or the hero all the time He's more strategic than that, choosing to play it like a game of chess, letting others take the limelight & the action but he always played a key role in the decision making of where the story was gonna go & then played his part of making it happen i see Charlize Theron more as like Joan of Arc, the female heroine among a male dominated society who is very courageous, skilled & will go beyond to get to her goal
I read that if this film made money, George would do 2 more considering it made $44M of the $150M budget in the opening weekend in the US alone, it's safe to say this will come to fruition which is a great thing & hope it goes on to be one of the most successful blockbusters in recent years, so it shakes up the Hollywood system on how things should be done - with realism, no cheese, with intensity & an actual story
This is a big screen experience that has to be witnessed don't download it, don't wait for it to come out on DVD / blu-ray, definitely don't watch it on your phone go see it & support something actually worth seeing at the cinemas, you wont regret it!!
Ai no mukidashi (2008)
10/10 & added to my "masterpiece collection" list
This film is incredible Sono overall is kinda like Takashi Miike but he's able to make a 4hr film & hold your attention right till the end it's filled with dark comedy, twisted story lines & random characters with violence & sex it's so absurd all u can do is laugh, even in the most violent parts but it also has beauty, tenderness, tension, psychological, and many other facts which makes this brilliant film so profound
If you haven't seen Miike's Ichi the Killer (2001) or Sono's Cold Fish (2010), then do that first before tackling this 4hr beast so you have some context of this fascinating masterpiece
Cobain: Montage of Heck (2015)
Poetic intimate exploration of a genius gone before his time,,,
A very enjoyable award-winning documentary depicting insight into Kurt Cobain's adolescent upbringing, family and relationship with Courtney Love - from childhood, teenage years and the birth of Nirvana onward, rising to become the biggest band in the world during this era. Exploring Cobain's years with heroin addiction, is eventually his downside yet never the main focus of the film that shows a rare chance to become familiar with such a genius up close.
The film uses a variety of media with highlights from home videos of Kurt and Courtney and their daughter Frances Bean including audio recordings, interviews with family and friends, personal scribblings, song lyrics and intimate thoughts. These elements are animated with an artistic brush stylistically particularly the audio recordings and writings that suit the visual story while fitting the tone beautifully.
The film keeps a strong rhythm throughout the 145 minute running time with a similarity to the animation and music montages of musician Rodriguez in the music documentary 'Searching for Sugar Man'. Not to imply that this is monotonous but rather the meditative groove is what makes it such an enjoyable ride with all the musical and visual elements. In fact the film plays out a bit like a mysterious fairy tale, most of Nirvana's music has been reinterpreted as motifs to accompany the animation or archival footage, which gives the film a poetic feel.
Overall Cobain: Montage of Heck is an awesome film to sink your teeth into, like finding a box of someone's personal belongings, where each item tells a story but packaged within a mixed media format with a rhythm that makes it an enjoyable ride. Fans will be satisfied with the film as a source of information but it is much more than that. The intimate portrait of one of the most famous rock stars ever is painted using a visual style and mood to match the music and the characteristics of Kurt's character. It was exceptional knowing the film is endorsed by the family with the use of documents and footage that they decided to share for the first time. Seeing Kurt and Courtney so intimately, it is almost like you were in the same room as them.
At the end of the day being an immense Nirvana fan, seeing all the footage of Cobain and the band is very satisfying, showcasing one of the most famous rock stars ever to fall at the classic age of 27, well before and way ahead of his time.