Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Celluloid #37

In Theaters

Waltz with Bashir (2008) Folman- Animated documentary about the Lebanon War and one man's inability to remember his experiences in it. This film tackles the nature of memory, post-traumatic stress, and the blocking out of terrible events. The dog scene at the beginning, the scene with the naked soldiers emerging from the water, and the scene with the giant lady were the highlights for me. The last quarter or third of the movie seemed less focused and lost me a little, but overall a worthwhile viewing. 4/5

In Home
El Analfabeto (The Illiterate One) (1961) Delgado - A man in his 30s (at least) cannot read or write. He receives a letter from his dead uncle and decides to enroll in school to finally learn. There's also a ridiculously sappy love story. Other people take advantage of Inocencio, but there always seems to be someone who admires the steps he has taken to better himself and therefore looks out for him. The film is pretty dated, but has a sweet message (I suppose) about the importance of literacy, but too saccharine for my tastes. 3/5

Wattstax (1973) Stuart - This documentary covers the concert at the L.A. Coliseum, complete with enjoyable performances by the Staples Singers, the Rance Allen Group, the Bar-Kays, Luther Ingram, Isaac Hayes, and more. Interspersed between the music are interviews of people living in Watts. The interviews focus on how Watts has changed (or not) since the riots, black power, and a lot about blacks and relationships. In my opinion, Richard Pryor is the weakest part of this film. 4/5

Weekend (1967) Godard - So this movie is pretty bizarre, but I liked it! In one scene a couple makes plans to kill her parents. In another a man believes himself to be God. An endless traffic jam. There's a scene revolving around cannibalism (and a pretty gruesome scene with a pig). Most entertaining to me were the abundance of car accidents, and car heaps littered all over the countryside. Godard also inserts his political rants to greater and lesser success...4/5

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