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Sloooooowww movie but excellent acting
A great film and very complex and well thought-out characterization. Gini is my favorite actress and she has done an excellent job. Paul Giamati blew me away. He is so awesome. Richard Hayden plays perfect who-cares-I'm-gonna-have-a-good-time character.
Sandra Oh's character is not believable. She looks and acts so intelligent only to be fooled by Jack? Come on. Girls, especially single mothers are too smart for that! Took a long time to develop the story and too many montages. It took almost the end of act 2 for Giamati and Gini to get together. It was a little disappointing to not see Gini after Miles gets back.
I was not keen to watch this film but I am glad I my reservation was totally misplaced.
Memoirs of a Geisha (2005)
I loved the film and the moments - a triumph
This film may not be true to Japanese Geisha culture or the actors may not be Japanese.
But it is a window into Japanese culture and history. And it has been told beautifully and graphically. Film is a dramatized art. This film makes you think. We have a commonly held notion of Geisha, that they are elite call- girls. But there are classes inside the Geisha society. Geisha evolved into an art form. The mystery and the aura is what makes them interesting.
Wonderful photography,great scenes, John Williams's spell-binding music and great moments make this a great film. Understandably it is difficult for western audience to understand the psyche of the Japanese mind - honor and shame being the most important of emotions, love relegated to a lower place.
I enjoyed this film. It captures a bygone era with a reasonable accuracy.
Don't watch this film the way you watch normal Hollywood movies. Take a little time to understand a different culture.
A History of Violence (2005)
Some disturbing questions
I enjoyed this film a lot. However there are some nagging questions.
If the story is about Tom Stall, why is the film starting with two killers? Isn't enough for them to burst into the diner and kill people? Do we need to know that they were professional killers? I think this movie had too much time for what it wanted to tell. So some padding? I could see that the diner staff were chilled and shocked at the ruthless dispatch of the killers by Tom Stall. The local cop is suspicious. There is enough going on to alert not just the local police but FB Eye as well. So how come our hero goes wherever he can without being pursued? How come the local cop is so nice when he suspects (may be eve knows) that our hero could be a gangsta? Doesn't the cop want to keep his job, the most noble intention of anyone? There was no character arc. Edie goes from all-love to hatred but not with any consistency. The ending is good but somehow there was no payoff. I was expecting Sarah Stall to run to papa and hug him as she would not be in state to understand everything about what dad did. Heidi's acting was contrary to my expectation.
Both sex scenes were not organic - somehow planted gratuitously.
This should have been a James Bond film, not the life of a diner owner in a small town. Somehow there are some missing pieces. It is more like an abstract art. Perhaps that is why Cannes liked it.
BTW I loved both Viggo Mortensen and Maria Bella. Ashton Holmes was great. Wonderful performance.
I changed my views about Hindi movies too...
For a long time I would watch Hindi / Tamil movies only when ironing. You don't care if you miss some parts - there is always gratuitous mandatory dances, fights and incidental humor.
Black stands out among the Hindi movies. The brilliant acting, dramatic tension, breathtaking views of the mansions in Simla and the story-telling technique blended to create a great experience. Agreed Amitab is a great actor. But Rani Mukerjee mounts a respectable challenge to him. Supporting actors were great too.
If Hindi movies are half as good as this, I would watch more.
I had a bonanza holiday break watching Black, Paheli and Mangal Pande. Looks like there is some real light at the end of the tunnel, after all! I am now a declared fan of Rani Mukerjee.