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Six Feet Under (2001)
The fragility and insignificance of our existence, exposed as never before
I'm no expert in TV-shows but when I read the description of this amazing series I knew I would enjoy it. I mean, I'm so attracted to dark humour as moths are to light. But the thing is, Six Feet Under is not dark humour. I don't even think people should attempt to describe this show because it really is one of a kind. I couldn't have imagined that a series would touch me so much.
It always surprises me how many people say they had problems getting into it. For me, it was love at first episode. Every one of them had the power to make me feel a wide range of emotions, from laughter to anger to sadness. The script was at all times poignant, funny and thought- provoking. There's nothing but words of praise for the superb acting, especially from Frances Conroy (Ruth), Peter Krause (Nate) and Michael C. Hall (David). Each character is so perfectly shaped that you can't help feeling empathetic towards them. The way in which the show portrays them dealing with their own demons as they struggle to stay strong to console the families of the deceased people is simply astonishing. I can agree that the third season was the low point of the show, but to anyone who considers giving it up- just DON'T! I was about to do so and I wouldn't have forgiven myself. The two last seasons, and especially the last three episodes from the fifth season make up for all the mistakes the show could have had.
I had read about the ending lots of times and I didn't know what to believe. It completely blew me away and I wouldn't have guessed it for the life of me. I really can't put into words all the feelings I've experienced during the last ten minutes of "Everyone's Waiting". All I can say is that I've finished the show months ago and I often still find myself thinking about it. I even have Sia's "Breathe me" on my telephone and every time I listen to it I begin to tear up. I will watch more TV shows in the future but I'm completely certain that nothing will impact me as much as Six Feet Under, which is (and always will be) my favorite series, ever.
Six Feet Under has brought a whole new meaning to the concept of "TV- series" and I wish the whole world watched it. There will never be anything close to it.
Thank you, HBO. And more importantly, thank you, Alan Ball.
Letter from an Unknown Woman (1948)
The most beautiful love letter ever written
There have been dozens of films about unrequited love, about heartbreak, about the lives of two individuals taking different paths...and there will continue to be, but "Letter from an Unknown Woman" stands above all of them. Why? What makes this film so special? Its simplicity. It's about a shy, young girl who falls for an older man who'll never be interested in her. It's a simple plot, yet this movie is one the most beautiful I've ever seen, in part, thanks to the beautiful Joan Fontaine, whose angel face and eyes didn't need any single word to express all the emotions a girl who's hopelessly in love could feel. She is the real star of this movie, and it's a pleasure to look at her; so simple, so gracious and so captivating. Louis Jordan is also excellent as the handsome man caught in a downward spiral. This movie is not easily forgotten. The piano and the train scene are among the loveliest I've ever seen in any movie. Every person out there who wants a beautiful love story should watch "Letter from an Unknown Woman". I assure you won't be disappointed. It's movies like these continuously reassert my love for classic cinema.
The Green Mile (1999)
It will stay with you for a long time.
The Shawshank Redemption is possibly my favorite movie ever. I had seen many movies before it, and I've certainly seen a lot after, but not many of them made me feel what that one did. Now, I have that feeling again. And once again, it comes from watching a Frank Darabont movie. I couldn't possibly explain the overload of emotions I experienced in the 3 hours it lasts. I have laughed. I have felt the emotions of every character. And most of all, I have cried. Very few movies have touched me like this one. Is there something to say about the acting that hasn't been said before? No, it isn't. You may have heard it is flawless, incredible, whatever. You did hear right, it absolutely is. I can't think of anyone in the whole movie that wasn't convincing in the least. The script has its funny moments, but it's incredibly deep, poignant and heartfelt. The characters are so "human" and unpretentious you can't help but adore them. But, well, there will be some you'd like to strangle. There has to be a villain everywhere, right? The Green Mile is a movie I will hardly forget. You can't possibly forget such an emotive story.
What, you want to watch it? Great! But don't forget to have grab some tissues first.
Citizen Kane (1941)
Best movie ever? Don't think so,
I guess at this point most people know that Citizen Kane has been named as "the greatest film in History" by the American Film Institute. Such thing can make you develop really high expectations that won't be met. At least that's what happened to me. I'm not saying it's a bad movie, but it isn't that "terrific" either. The story isn't very interesting and I couldn't find myself emphasizing with anyone, not even Charles Foster Kane. While I admit the dialogue was clever and the use of light give the movie an interesting, eerie atmosphere, the story is boring at many points, and its message has been heard a thousand times over. It may have been revolutionary for its time, but it feels rather outdated now. It's considered a classic movie but it didn't do much for me (and I do like classic movies). Don't get me wrong, all in all I believe it's a good movie, but it doesn't deserve the title it has been given. You either agree with it or you don't, with no inbetweens.
The Great Dictator (1940)
A milestone in the history of cinema
The Great Dictator is a funny, charming and witty film, with excellent performances, especially from Charlie Chaplin and his wife, Paulette Goddard. But it's not all about comedy; behind the laughters lies a critique of the war and how pointless, damaging and inhuman it is. It shows the situation of the Jewish people, who were often abused and ridiculized by the German army. It satirizes the greed and lust for power of Mussolini and Hitler, who most of the time act like children and not like grown-up adults, fighting with each other for the biggest piece of cake. The ending of the film is, without a doubt, one of the most beautiful I have ever seen. I guess that, at this point, most people know a word or two of the famous speech. It was so heart-felt, human and splendid I couldn't help but cry. The Great Dictator is a film that is not to be missed.
Monsters, Inc. (2001)
Another gem from Pixar
Man, I love Pixar. Time goes by and their movies have never disappointed me. Monsters, Inc was obviously not an exception. I really can't think of any flaw in this movie. The animation was beautiful. The voices were perfect, with a special mention to Billy Crystal, who gives voice to the funniest character in the whole story (in my opinion), Mike Wazowski. There are good guys and, of course, villains. The monsters are, in fact, no monsters at all; they are incredibly sweet and human. And of course, the script; funny, witty and surprisingly deep. At this point, I guess everybody knows that Disney films always (and I mean always) have an important message, for both kids and adults. Monsters, Inc is a tale about friendship, sticking together through the hard times and not being afraid of the unknown. 90 minutes of cinematic joy that I'd recommend everyone. Grab the popcorn and enjoy.
12 Angry Men (1957)
A young boy is accused of murder and every jury seems to find him guilty, expect one man, who tries to convince the others that maybe they are all mistaken. From that point, each man tries to separate the prejudice from the actual evidence and make up his own mind about the boy's guilt or innocence. For such a simple story, the film is tremendously intense and clever, and it will most likely keep you on the edge. The acting is absolutely flawless; the twelve men of the jury represent a wide spectrum of personalities, from the tempered and reasonable guy to the funny and naive one. Henry Fonda takes the cake and gives what must be one of the best performances of his life, but every other actor is equally brilliant. The whole story is developed in just one scenario and it often has clever and funny moments, becoming more and more tense as the film progresses. This film honestly blew me away. Does it deserve to have the seventh place in the top 250? It sure as hell does.
It's a Wonderful Life (1946)
Holy mackerel, what a film.
It's been a while since I last cried so much with joy after watching a film. The last minutes of It's a Wonderful Life are so beautiful and heart-melting that you'll probably want to stand up and clap! At least I did. I can't think of any flaw in this film. The acting is perfect, and James Stewart and Donna Reed shine out with their own light. The script is funny, witty and sometimes even sad. But what's most important about this film is its message; that life is often hard, but always beautiful, and something you should never give up on. Definitely, this movie is a classic that should be celebrated for the years to come. No matter if you're an adult or a child, you'll enjoy it.
The Artist (2011)
The Artist is one of those movies you either like or don't like, with no intertwines. And I happened to love it. We sadly live in an era where most people would overlook this gem of a movie either because it's in black and white and has no special effects or because it's mute. But if you ask me, it is truly amazing that films like this are still made! I found it incredibly funny, witty and brilliantly acted, especially Jean Dujardin. He gave the performance of a lifetime, as much as some of you say he didn't deserve the Oscar for Best Actor in a leading Role. Another great thing about it it's the soundtrack-so engaging and appropriate, going from uplifting to dramatic. Please do not miss this movie. It's an experience you won't regret.