Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Celluloid #92

In Home

Abouna (2004) Harom - The father of two boys goes missing. They are approximately 11 and 15 and their mother decides the best thing is to send them off to Koran school. It's boring there and other boys pick on them (especially the younger brother Amine), but there is a nice, pretty deaf girl. They attempt to escape, get caught, and more drama happens. Very pretty to watch, and well shot, but very slow in pacing and quite arbitrary in story. 3/5

the Blue Angel (1930) von Sternberg - A college professor falls for a local nightclub singer, against his better judgment. They get married and go on the road together, but it's only a matter of time before Lola gets restless and essentially ruins the professor's life. 4/5 

the Machinist (2004) Anderson - Christian Bale looks terrible! His character, Trevor, hasn't slept in a year and then he accidentally takes someone's arm off in a machine. Several people people make comments about "if he was any skinnier, he wouldn't exist"...lots of weird shit happens, and at times it seems like the film might be highly influenced by Fight Club, however the style or something about the story just seems off...3/5

the Messenger (2009) Moverman - Sgt. Montgomery gets assigned to "Casualty Notification" duty, basically making him responsible for telling families that their spouses or children haved been killed in action. Strangely, Montgomery starts essentially stalking one of the wives that he had to notify, but that plot line doesn't dominate the film. Mainly, there's a very clear anti-wat sentiment, showing how soldiers carry a lot of guilt about being "war heroes", or not seeing enough action, or just can't grieve properly. 3.5/5  

le Million (1931) Clair - An artist is in a lot of debt, when by chance he buys a winning lottery ticket. However, the ticket is in his jacket in his girlfriend's house. It's pretty shabby looking, so she gives it away to an old man without thinking. Silliness ensues while Michel tries to track down his ticket. All in all, too silly and too much singing for my taste. 3/5

Tetro (2009) Coppola - Two brothers reunite in Buenos Aires after a long period of estrangement. Tetro is much older and curmudgeonly and Bennie is not quite 18 and has a lot of questions for the brother he grew up idolizing. Tetro took off when Bennie was a kid, promising to come back for him, but ends up cutting off contact with his entire family. Tetro has a lot of resentment towards his famous conductor father, resulting in a battle of genius. Bennie wants to encourage Tetro to write again, and hopes that success will validate his brother's existence. 4/5 

the Warriors (1979) Hill - All the gangs in New York meet up to pledge a truce when the organizer of the meet-up gets shot. His death is wrongfully place on the Warriors, causing a new wave of violence to erupt. The Warriors have to fend off various rival gangs just to make it home. 4/5

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