Monday, September 21, 2009

Celluloid #59

In Home

Diva (1981) Beineix - Very stylish French mystery thriller about a young man obsessed with an opera singer. He makes an illegal recording of her concert for his own listening pleasure, but that recording later gets mistaken by criminals and the police department as a tape made by an informant in a sex trafficking ring. Also, some Taiwanese gangsters are really trying to get a hold of his recording. 4/5

Kings and Queen (2004) Desplechin - Similar to Desplechin's latest offering A Christmas Tale, in that a group of intertwined people have to deal with their shit in the face of tragedy. This particular story centers around Nora and the men in her life. Her dying father, her son, her son's father, her ex-lover, and her fiance. 4/5

Lost Highway (1997) Lynch - Easily seen as the beginning of the latest David Lynch era that includes the films Mulholland Drive and Inland Empire, all though this film does make a little more sense and follows a somewhat cohesive story (only somewhat though...). A couple receives a videotape in the mail of themselves in their own house sleeping. The wife (a very attractive-looking Patricia Arquette) dies and her husband Fred is sentenced to death for her murder. In jail, Fred takes some drugs and physically changes into a different person. This new person is a young mechanic who also falls in love with someone who looks like Patricia Arquette. 4/5

Night of the Hunter (1955) Laughton - Movie that features the famed "Hate" and "Love" knuckles. A fake preacher gets locked up. While incarcerated, he overhears his cellmate talking about stashed money in his sleep. Upon his release, Powell attempts to find the location of the cash by courting his cellmate's wife and trying to get chummy with the kids. Little Johnny isn't having it though...4/5

Robocop (1987) Verhoeven - A cop gets killed on duty and his corpse is given a total body prosthetic. He becomes a robot with a human face and retains some mannerisms from his previous life. He is programmed to be a more effective means to control crime. Robocop realizes what happened to him while he was alive and seeks to get revenge on those who killed him. Unfortunately, some of the higher-ups responsible for his design are also implicated. 4/5

Salt of the Earth (1954) Biberman - A film made by one of the Hollywood Ten directors about a zinc miners' strike in New Mexico. The strikers are Mexican-American and eventually the women in the town have to take over the strike. Melodramatic in music and speeches, so a little cheesy at times. This film was banned upon release and only shown in extremely limited capacity in the early 1970s due to its perceived Communist agenda. 3/5

Taboo (1999) Oshima - Two young recruits enter into a samurai militia. One is quite effeminate and the two become lovers. Many senior officers also attempt to court Kano, but he rebuffs them all. 3.5/5

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