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8/10
surprisingly good Australian comedy!!
25 October 2010
I was pleasantly surprised by this Aussie comedy when I saw it on a plane flying home to Sydney. There is a continuous tingle of surprises coming up in every scene & all the actors deliver that special warmth that comes from good movie direction and consistent acting. There is a wonderful sense of reality in the plot that shows a man who is finally able to understand how to grow up and face the fact that if he leaves his family home & his dinky-die mates he will be OK.

Sure, he may need to work hard to keep the new found girlfriend's touchy-feely relationship & hit upon true love with his special girl but in the end he finds it is worth the hard yards. The part played by small person Peter Dinklage (from "Death at a Funeral"-UK & USA versions) is particularly delightful & adds a certain touch of sparkle to the whole movie. Try & see it if you can.
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Luna Papa (1999)
9/10
lends new meaning to having a cow of a day!
9 July 2007
Warning: Spoilers
I loved this movie from the minute I saw the scene where a bull drops out of a local delivery plane & plummets to earth killing two main characters. YUP the bull did the job and then swam to shore unharmed! But I am too far ahead of myself...

This movie has a wonderfully painterly quality that is brought about by the surrealistic cinematic effects that the director, Bakhtiar Khudojnazarov brings with his use of bright colours and washes of Technicolor. The female lead, Chulpan Khamatova, is perfect as the seventeen years old aspiring actress who loves Shakespeare and wants to become a film star. She lives in a small village in Uzbekistan with her mentally damaged brother and her loving father. The girl meets an entrepreneur ( plane pilot) and has sex with him after he makes her believe that he is a friend of Tom Cruise. The next thing she knows, she is pregnant, desperate and on a quest to restore the family honor by finding the cowardly jerk who seduced her. Father, and daughter (Mamlakat) supported by the decidedly "different" brother (wonderfully played by Moritz Bleibtrau--Manny in 'Run Lola Run') begin a wildly fantastic trip through the landscapes of Uzbekistan in which tradition and superstition clash with the chaos of a materialistic world. The wonderful script makes the film's sometimes slapstick and giddy narrative into something grander -- a meditation on maternity as a form of inspired madness.

One scene is great genius... The local delivery plane with a bull and a cow in the holding bay swoops sideways to get a closer look at Mamlakat's wedding taking place on a barge in the middle of the the lake, and just as the plane swoops, the bull falls out of the side door of the plane & plummets down to land SPLAT on the bride's new husband-to-be & her father- killing them both dead- and leaving her pregnant and a sinner. Chulpan Khamatova is perfect as Mamlakat, the perplexed mother to be, confronting miracles, wonders, joy, death and the unexpected as she searches for her child's father. Try & find this DVD or haunt the late night channels like I do.
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Dogville (2003)
3/10
Misguided dull acting from Kidman
24 January 2007
Kidman plays a gangster's (James Caan's) daughter, who is surrounded by criminals and so wants to escape the vicious side of life and live in peace and quiet in the country. But once she's gained 'refugee status' in Dogville by working hard each day for the townspeople, Grace is soon being taken advantage of by the poor country folks, who slowly become a replacement for the criminals.

Grace's problem (and she gains a few dilemmas over the weeks) is that she does not set her boundaries or demand justice. Even refugees have rights. Her voice is very well modulated and the girl never raises her voice, except once when she yells at Vera's young son stating that she will not physically spank the boy (and then she does hit him!). Bad move Grace. This bad action is supposed to show the townspeople that Grace is immoral and not trustworthy and so this automatically opens her up for further exploitation and degradation, which includes being used for sexual relief by all the men in town. (Thankgoodness the women are not lesbians.)

So, now we see who's trustworthy, truthful... and what's immoral. But Grace just lies back and takes it! WHY? I feel she should get a bit angry but doesn't seem to show any reactions till the end.

Actually, I dreaded watching Dogville because I do not feel that Nichole Kidman has any right to be accredited as a leading actress, in the category of Liv Ulman.

In Dogville, Kidman is a pale insipid disappointment and so was James Caan as her gangster Daddy. They are obviously only worried about showing their good side to the cameras (Kidman's wispy hair was a worry!) and they were not able to bring out the truth needed to portray the underlying faults in the characters.

The script was ably supported by the other lesser known actors and even the great actress Lauren Bacall looked scruffy for the part.

This movie was supposed to be a representation of a stage play on screen so what's with the user comments about "where's the scenery?" For goodness sakes- grow up people!

Dogville should be watched as a film about justice, trust, trustworthiness, assertiveness, conscience and faith in humanity, which is what you see in any Shakespeare production so maybe HEY!... Dogville's script is up there with the best? And it's good because IT MAKE YOU THINK ABOUT HOW WE ATTAIN A Truly MORAL SOCIETY GUYS.

I reckon they should make Dogville again without Kidman and Caan and see what happens. It'll open your eyes and your hearts for sure.
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7/10
Sweets to the sweet
26 December 2006
Over all this movie (Finding Neverland) is able to plod along slowly and carefully tell the main story of the Life of JM Barrie with all the ins and outs of how he developed the idea for the Peter Pan story.

I found this movie (and the music) slow and too saccharine and thought it lacked some sort of vigor that I have come to expect from Johnny Depp and Kate Winslet's movies.

Altho I really loved Kate Winslet's acting in this movie but I felt she was held back by the director and the script. Depp's acting was rather stilted and reserved for the whole film also. But I guess that was the director's choice- to give a stilted portrayal of the way snobby middle-class people were in Scotland (and all over) in those days. Now Scotish football fans are loud & vocal about their sport. So at least some things have changed.

Overall, the children were wonderful but I found the boy Peter (Freddie Highmore) was dull and uninspiring and I found close-ups of his eyes that looked like pudgy blobs disquietingly flaccid. The other boys were lively but not seen enough of.

In real-life, (as in the movie too) the Kate Winslet character (Sylvia) gets sick and Barrie (1860-1937) puts his hand up for the Guardianship of the Davies children. Later in life, Michael drowned at 21. The boy Peter grew up but he committed suicide in 1960. Barrie wrote the wonderful plays 'Quality Street' and 'The Admirable Crichton', which were great successes.

This movie was much better than the JM Barrie story with Robin Williams (Hook 1991) which was over done and too long. The way this film showed the 'fantasy' scenes of Tinkerbell and the Pirate Gang were done SO well that I hope they decide to make a full length movie in this style and really bring Barrie's dreams to life.
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The Book Group (2002–2003)
2 great TV series by Annie Griffin!
3 December 2006
Hey! I have been sitting watching the TV series "The Book Group" (2002) & thinking how much I love their sarcasm & wit.

And now I have found that Annie Griffin directed an earlier series "Coming Soon" (1999) and 'The Book Group' (2002-3). Both series have that same brew of almost reality, where life is acted out through the comedic antics of the winners & losers within the screenplay.

The tone of truly delightful, witty sarcasm and creamy cutting wit is the thing that I unwittingly connected with in both series, and it is the characters in 'Coming Soon' (1999) & The Book Group's characters' continuous unveiling of how they try to remain true to themselves, & FAIL GLORIOUSLY that brings out what I love about the two series.

Gradually, we begin to get an idea of what is behind the characters' closed doors and understand that there could be a tenuous connection to what most people consider 'normal' but within these people there are many shades and depth of how we all try to connect with reality, maybe miss the mark, then struggle, but move onwards & upwards.

You know I did not know till I checked IMDb! that "The Book Group' was connected to my old favourite series "Coming Soon". AND here it is! Sorry about all the exclamation marks !!! but I am SO elated to find Annie Griffin's gooey, blueberry coated finger in both wonderfully told tales of Scottish (Glasgow) extremist, eccentric behaviours.

"The Book Group" brings us the great work of Derek Riddell as Rab: taciturn tracksuit wearer, who reveals little about himself, has stubble, and literally loves footballers. The wonderful James Lance (from TV's 'Absolute Power') as Barney Glendenning- pretentious, opinionated post-graduate student with blonde highlights & drug problem. Karen Kilgariff as Jean Pettengill Claire's awful, overbearing older sister, who arrives in Glasgow wanting to share Claire's exciting lifestyle and Rory McCann as the wheelchair bound Kenny.

James Lance also plays Lachlan Glendenning- pretentious, bearded, bespectacled brother of Barney, who claims to be an installation artist. Their lives are wonderfully wacky and I recommend you all try to find them on DVD & see how great both series really are.
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Coming Soon (1999 TV Movie)
10/10
2 Great TV series by Annie Griffin!
3 December 2006
Hey! I have been sitting watching the TV series "The Book Group" (2002) & thinking how much I love their sarcasm & wit.

And now I have found that both "Coming Soon" (1999) and 'The Book Group' have the same wonderful director (Annie Griffin) and also have that same brew of almost reality, where life is acted out through the comedic antics of the winners & losers within the screenplay.

The tone of truly delightful, witty sarcasm and creamy cutting wit is the thing that I unwittingly connected with in both series, and it is the characters in COMING SOON & The Book Group's characters' continuous unveiling of how they try to remain true to themselves, & FAIL GLORIOUSLY that brings out what I love about the two series.

Gradually, we begin to get an idea of what is behind the characters' closed doors and understand that there could be a tenuous connection to what most people consider 'normal' but within these people there are many shades and depth of how we all try to connect with reality, maybe miss the mark, then struggle, but move onwards & upwards.

You know I bless IMDb's wonderful interconnectedness because I did not know till I checked IMDb! that "The Book Group' was connected to my old favourite series "Coming Soon". AND here it is! Sorry about all the exclamation marks !!! but I am SO elated to find Annie Griffin's gooey, blueberry coated finger in both wonderfully told tales of Scottish (Glasgow) extremist, eccentric behaviours.

"Coming Soon" brings us the great work of Omid Djalili as Amir Hassan (seen also in Black Books & as a slave trader in the Gladiator). Annie Griffin plays the befuddled character Julia Roth, and Rory McCann plays Fergus (also the wheelchair bound Kenny in 'Book Group'). Their life is wonderfully wacky and I recommend you all try to find them on DVD & see how great both series really are.
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7/10
Loved the high % of swearing but some bits smelled...
13 June 2005
I wanted to like this movie cause I'm a Clerks fan and I love the grungy get-down-n-dirty swearing of Jay. But a few things are annoying... maybe cause Jay doesn't smoke enough dope and he seems too clear headed- and since the boys are the main 'men' here... it's as if Silent & Jay are trying too hard to make the plot have a real druggie dimension until it gets lost in its own reflection. Which is a pity... cause I wanted to like this movie- but nup!

And this was one of those flix where perfection isn't necessary- there are lots of continuity gaffs that make the movie funny too -like when the four girls run out of the diamond exchange before they could have got those ugly high-heel shoes on, but they get into their car wearing shoes again- but this all added to my enjoyment.

The main problem for me was the way Silent Bob twisted his face- so he's frowning or shrugging his shoulders in time to what Jay says- which becomes totally naff. The thing about Silent Bob is that he has the potential to be really funny if he does nothing. Still, one good thing was Bob's affair with the orangutan- it was very sweet- truly touching and believable.

Sometimes the action gets a bit bogged down in all the stars who pop in and out of scenes- but I liked the Scooby Doo/ Josie & the Pussycat psychedelia in the van with Justice, Sissy, Missy & Chrissy. SO what went awry? Maybe they tried too hard to be funny? Not sure- but I won't watch it again- even to see that cute orangutan tonguing Bob.
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9/10
I'm one-eyed about One-eyed Jimmy
12 June 2005
The long list of alternate style actors in this film- makes it the good film it is. Those non-Hollywoodized fuzzballs like Steve Buscimi's 'Ed Hoyt', John Turturro's 'Disco Bean' and Samuel L. Jackson's 'Coln. Ron' make it a simply honest film. The director Sam H. Kass bends these wacky celluloid characters just enough till the are almost real life. Of course it's the laughable situations around their searching for Jimmy Hoyt that makes it even more enjoyable.

The narrative begins with a small film crew walking around filming people in a neighborhood with Michael Badalucco's 'Joe Head'- guiding the crew. Mrs Hoyt, the overly protective mom and the sister Holly (Anne Meara), are worried about alcoholic Jimmy being away for a few days. The stony-faced father in a bathrobe, Harold (Patrick McNamara), sits in the lounge- saying nothing- but his silence is understandable cause along the way- we're told he gets (not quite visible) uncontrollable erections and is depressed... So, they improvise and work around him. Going off filming, hanging out and arguing around each other- so we are always finding out interesting tidbits about these strange collection of characters.

Also a plus for me, it was good to see all the Turturro family is there... bro Nicholas T. as 'Junior', sister Aida T. as 'Madame Esther', mom Katherine T. as the 'Ticket Seller #2'... and they are all superb... fitting in with the rest of the dysfunctional weirdos to make this- a comedy not to be missed.
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Danton (1983)
Let the good films roll- vive Wojciech & Depardieu!
19 April 2005
I have read the pro & con reviews and wonder too about the cold disparaging comments of Manicheus? Why not let your students watch a movie and choose for themselves? I felt this was a well presented, well acted and well scripted film that told the story about a confusing time in history. It was a time when Britain was sending its criminals to begin a colony in Australia and the Enlightenment had reached its height.

The French Revolution was a pivotal time in Europe's history and I realized that as the film unfolded, I was learning about the emotions and its inner workings of these great names- Danton and Robespierre. Robespierre was as desperate and dedicated to the Republic as any Fascist was to Franco's bloody vision for Spain.

Robespierre's character showed his dedication to his ideals while being torn by moral considerations of stopping Danton by sending him and his friends to the guillotine... and it was this sense of being treated like I was intelligent that held my attention.

I have often wondered about the French Revolution and the vying of the factions, and the violence of the guillotine... but the Hollywood versions make it a mindless bloodbath while Wojciech & Depardieu have brought some humanity and reasoning to the whole period. I am only grateful that I could see it on the big screen at a free showing at my local Art Gallery in Sydney, Australia.
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Oscar (1991)
9/10
gangsters, cute chicks, comedy & good acting- Yay!
17 March 2005
For once in this light-hearted comedy when Sly Stallone plays a gangster ('Snaps' Provalone), he really shows that he can act in comedy, and do it well!

Marisa Tomei as Provalone's beautiful (slightly spoiled) daughter is fantastic too- & her beautiful face and comedic good timing actually helps us see why George (in Seinfeld) Costanza fell soo much in love with her.

Ornella Muti (Mrs Provalone) shows us a concerned mother and loving wife and is capable of being a strong foil to Stallone - so she has Snaps Provalone behaving like a proper dad to his family.

Tim Curry is a gem as the elocution teacher, who tries to teach Provalone correct English grammar by explaining verbs & oxymorons- so that when Snaps gets mad he says to his off- sider Connie- 'you are an ox & a moron'.

They all work well together & the end product is a light happy story of gangsters who want to look respectable but still have to make lotsa money.

All the smaller character parts fit together smoothly so the plot moves along effortlessly. The main plot from a play by Claude Magnier (a writer of French farces) evolves wonderfully to show the mix-up of the satchel bags that have either jewelery or the maid's underwear.

All this is juxtaposed with the police bungling and raiding the Provalone's house to grab the bag of jewels & ending up with the undies- this is very funny & shows evidence of the tight directing from John Landis.

I love this movie & watch it on rainy days when the family want to be cheered-up and have a good laugh.
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The Tragedy of Hamlet (2002 TV Movie)
9/10
Nothing rotten in this Denmark
21 November 2004
Peter Brook has done it again! This colourful TV/ video of Brook's stage version of HAMLET is a joy to behold.

Brook's direction of the actors in 'The Tragedy of Hamlet' lit a new pathway into the magic world of Shakespearean interpretations. We've come a long way from Lawrence Olivier's rather stilted, well-enunciated delivery of "To be or not to be...'. That was the 50s and this is now!

The main thing about this 2 & 1/2 hour production is that even though this is a shortened version with much of the plot left out: such as the scene of Polonius's farewell to Laertes and many others, they are there in the back of your head. You wonder how these actors would have done the lines - and, I did wonder this but I did not really 'miss' them. Brook's Hamlet was rivetingly played by a black actor with dreadlocks. Adrian Lester [32], the Jamaican-born actor from Birmingham (England) remarked: "Is theatre not an act of the imagination?" The veteran actress, Natasha Parry, (Brook's wife) tries a bit unsuccessfully to be stately as Hamlet's mother, but overall she is OK as the queen in deep royal purple. And I guess, it's nice to see an actor, who is 'too old' rather than too young. Throughout, Brook reveals his connections to India... Ophelia is played by the Paris-based Kuchipudi dancer Shantala Shivalingappa. Her Ophelia had an innocent, untouched quality.

But, of course, the whole point of this production is that most modern audiences may be familiar with the full-length Hamlet, and as a result, had become a little bored with Shakespeare's subplots and verbiage.

With this in mind, Brook cut out about one-third of the dialogue and removed major scenes and speeches. The audience soon realizes that Brook uses the assumption that there is a leaner, cleaner Hamlet lurking beneath Shakespeare's expansive work. Brook reduced scenery to an Indian flavoured brightly vermilion colored carpet, bright silk pillows and a few cyan blue low stools and tables on coaster wheels, so that his eight actors (and one musician) could do their business unhampered by starched lace and Elizabethan costumes.

The minimalist setting intensified, accelerated and smoothed the way for the action, highlighting both Shakespeare's magnificent words and Brook's masterful choreography.

The eight actors, several of whom double up on roles, brought everything alive for me. Jeffrey Kissoon played both uncle Claudius and the Ghost of Hamlet's father, and really opened the contrast and the complexity of the human psyche. Critics complained that for anyone who is new to Hamlet that the doubling up of Rosencrantz and Gildenstern with Naseeruddin Shah and Rohan Siva (as Laertes), and as the First and the Second Players, is somewhat disconcerting and possibly confusing. But we can learn to live with that... and I felt that the final effect was worth it.

I loved the fact that at last I could follow the plot & feel genuine anguished sorrow at the destruction of Ophelia's mind, as virtues of trust and loyalty were intermingled with tragedy and death. I could positively 'see' the internal workings of Hamlet & Claudius's hearts and minds, as they figured out who they could trust in this life and the next.

Basically that is why I admired Brook's production, because it was a colourful, lively, amusing and deeply human piece that touched my heart and stirred my soul.
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Dead Man (1995)
You are not a dead man in B/W
17 November 2004
I've read reviews for Dead Man that are extra positive and also very negative- so I reckon- you can either love it or hate it but watch it and learn!

Johnny Depp and Jarmusch are the best together in this surreal western. I love the fact that Steve Buscemi was the 'uncredited' bartender in the town of Machine's bar called the 'Green Door'- which was supposed to be the name of the banned book that Stalin's wife was reading when she was killed (by Stalin's bodyguards). It's little things like these obscure facts that made it wonderful to absorb.

Lance Henrikson (from Terminator) as the cannibalistic bounty hunter, the daytime customer getting a blow job from a 'ho' in the side alley and Gary Farmer as the Canadian Indian "Nobody" - make this movie come alive. We get to see his bare arse in the woods too!

There is a sense of an epic journey being filmed. The pity is tho that the flower seller who befriends Depp outside the bar is not skanky enough- she's a little too-oo clean & smooth... but it can be forgiven.

Dead Man was great for little young me- but maybe you should watch it & see for yourself?
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Important to know these things for our survival
4 November 2004
This movie is a documentary that appeals like a movie. And- the main thing that comes across in the 'Corporation', is the absolute need for ordinary people to become aware of the corrupt methods used by big western nation's corporations to gain more and more of all the world's markets.

People need to know about many Corporation's voracious surge towards profits at all cost- abusing the Third World sweat shop trade with all the religious verve of missionaries: claiming this is 'good' for the locals but ending up by ultimately exploiting them.

'The Corporation' helps get it all in perspective- so that we can have a realistic view of globalisation and the destructive effects these unwieldy behemoths run by over paid ugly men who rule in cold uncaring glass palaces in New York, Paris, London etc.- cut off from the rest of the real world. Sometimes it does drag a bit and so I feel it would benefit from a 'clip-ectomy' - cutting about 30 mins would really help. Still, I guess that these are things that are taught in University nowadays, and also needs to be told to the rest of us.
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9/10
The truth will out
23 June 2004
I feel that a director's job through a movie lens, is not to tell the devil he/she is evil but to make a film that tells the viewer that evil exists and how we find it in us. This movie shows a lot more than we think we know about human nature. This movie is based on the true story of a woman called Sada Abe -played inimitably by top-notch Hitomi Kuroki. Sada is sensuously beautiful in an unmade-up way [no makeup plastered on her]. In 1936, Sada strangled her lover Tatsuzo [played by the short in height but powerfully muscled actor Tsurutaro Kataoka] and cut off his penis and scrotum [ouch!] and carried them around in a paper bag shoved into her kimono belt.

Director Nobuhiko Obayashi's unusually beautiful smooth film with some odd camera angles -follows the young woman, Sada's life from her loss of virginity in a rape at 14 to life as a prostitute and later a mistress - from a fateful meeting with the man whom she loves, to his eventual murder. The scene where Sada, who works in her lover's restaurant, wrestles, pulls hair, and judo chops Tatsuzo's jealous wife to the bamboo floor boards and kicks her in the ribs till the wife jumps up strangling and slapping Sada's face -is a must see and really wonderful! The movie has this quirky, way of bringing a relaxed and usually unseen side of Japanese life - showing characters dressed in a mix of western & traditional dress: the costuming is delicious. Lots of love scenes and erotic rolling on the floor mats but not much nudity [no genitals etc] just fine creamy shoulders and legs -truely sensual. These events took place during a period of war, when Japan invaded Manchuria, economic depression, public unease and growing militarism, with references to the assassination of Cabinet Ministers by groups of 'Young Officers' which begins the nucleus of the future WW II Fascist regime. The action was set in a time when the young were questioning eastern traditions and wanting western consumer goods [Saba eats bags and bags of mini sugar rolled donuts]. It was the time of unrest and confusion and when public opinion was, at best, unpredictable.

When the details of her crime are printed in nationwide newspapers -Sada became an overnight sensation as a 'love goddess' and was granted a lenient sentence for her crime of passion. The actor who plays her wandering vagabond friend is dressed in a combination of Japanese peasant baggy pants and leggings with a shawl and topped off with an Al Capone hat -I just loved the whole package - Japanese with English subtitles.
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The Pillow Book is deeply personal -revenge is personal too
9 March 2004
Pillow Book's direction by Peter Greenaway is brilliant. The story

has a few English characters [Jerome -Ewan McGregor] -with

mainly Japanese actors, who make up the basic reason for the

story about -a daughter's revenge, [Nagiko] against a homosexual

Publisher, who had been using his power -that of choosing certain

works to publish- not just on merit -but for sexual favours. He is

seen by Nagiko, leaving their home after buggering her father. The

young daughter sees the shame on her father's face and

promises herself to 'get revenge'.

She takes the daring step of offering her stories for print by

sending her book in chapters to the publisher -written in

calligraphy, on 12 naked men [who are shown full-frontal nude].

I feel the nudity is not gratuitous but beautiful & it's about time

women got their own back for the blatant attempts at marketing

movies with topless nudity thrown into movies like Swordfish's

Halle Berry... the nude body is beautiful & should be seen when

necessary... this movie shows that nudity in Japan is not seen as

shameful like it often is in anal western societies. The 12 naked men included her boy-friend Ewan McGregor,

who it turned out was also the Publisher's lover [there's a scene

with the 2 men in bed] & so it evolves...as the publisher gets

infuriated at the intrigue... It is a movie that is well worth the time to watch ... with beautiful

cinematography & I feel it's now a classic in its own.
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About modern Italy; eccentric characters searching for soul mates
16 February 2003
If you want to see Venice, then you'll enjoy the way Venice is filmed

with a wonderful clarity of light that gives you an inkling that there is

a sense of romance, and mystery hiding in each cobbled street

and side canal. The housewife Rosalba (Licia Maglietta) is accidently left behind

at a bus station on a sightseeing tour, so she accepts a hitch in a

sports car driving to Venice.. she's mad at her sons and husband

for leaving her behind, so she breaks out of her old predictable

house wife mould and goes. The plot unfolds gradually to help us

to understand what is happening to change the mousy 'housewife'

into an inquisitive, interesting person. When she arrives in Venice, Rosalba takes a room in a small

'pensionne' - for a night but ends up staying for much longer. She

gets a room near the waiter Fernando (Bruno Ganz) who is from

Iceland, and depressed, but kindly and attentive.. Then she gets a job in the local florist shop that is run by a cranky

anarchist (Felice Andreasi) and she makes friends with the wacky

neighbour Grazia( Marina Massironi), playing a holistic masseuse.

Her husband and teenage sons don't seem to miss her much till

the housework builds up, so hubby hires a plump plumber who

reads detective novels, Costantino (Guiseppe Battiston) to go to

Venice, to track his wife down. We get to see some of the

waterways of Venice when the plumber/detective finds a cosy

one-room canal boat. 'Bread and Tulips' shows us how it could be so easy for someone

to accept living in a rut....... What do you do when your marriage becomes so predictable that

you know not to question your husband's taste in a mistress? As the movie develops we see how the woman, Rosalba comes to

her senses and begins to live a life full of meaning for herself and

her friends around her. The characters wander about as a part of the ordinary Venetian

persons' daily life, -you feel they must be lucky to be surrounded by

the waterways of Venice. This movie is a well-made movie and the way the characters are

interwoven with emotions and personal development reminded

me of the same sense of mystery and sentimental interaction that

was shown in 'Chocolat'. I liked "Chocolat' and if you did too you'll probably like 'Bread &

Tulips'. It is a simple story told capably.
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Dubbel-8 (2000)
Clarity of filmatography brings us closer to the pleasures of youth
14 February 2003
Warning: Spoilers
I was knocked out by the sensitivity shown by the young actors through expert direction. The sweet 14 year old boy Anders [Francisco Jacobs] with square framed glasses perched on his face [a Clarke Kent look-alike], was excellent. His innocence was touching. His mother hugged him when he cried after losing his virginity to the young star Sofia, a Brigitte Bardot look alike. As she promised, Sofia pragmatically payed her debt to Anders, for making her famous, by letting him 'screw' her just once -this was sensational.

The Swedish town was inhabited by 'typical 60's wanna-be Elvises... soft versions of tough rockers in a small clean town.

The captured light throughout the filming in the woods and village was scintillating!
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The haunting music -None but the Lonely Heart, is a constant theme
12 April 2002
This 1944 movie is a masterpiece of black and white photography by Director Clifford Odets. The subtilty of background lighting and the shadow effects in the street scenes are magic. There are moments of sheer brilliance with Cary Grant as the independent unorthodox Cockney son Ernie Mott, who comes home and decides to run the secondhand furniture shop and care for his sick mother, Ethel Barrymore. Jane Wyman, makes money playing the cello and patiently loves Ernie from across the street. Mott has 'perfect pitch' and can tune pianos and does odd jobs. Grant brings this quirky character to life and makes us love him. Ernie is a combination of dark brooding and sanguine pathos. All the actors are excellent and bring the poetic language of the script to life. June Duprez as Ernie's girlfriend Ada is riveting. Barry Fitzgerald as genial family friend Henry Twite is special. Even the Dog called Nipper stole every scene. As you can see I loved this movie, hope you do too....
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Lola (1970)
Very 60's style movie/mini skirts abound
21 January 2002
Susan George as Twinky( what a weird name?) is a convincingly vacuous 16 year old British virgin who seduces a 32 year old American writer of pornography (Charlie Bronson). Must be unusual for Bronson cause he never kills or hits anyone. The plot is simple but the whole effect of mini skirts, long legs and blonde hair on Twinky plus the contrast of short black rugged Bronson as Scotty is funny and watchable. Bronson being loving and patient with the annoyingly bouncy playfulness of a 16 year old kid who is 'good in the sex' department is worth the time.
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