Hereafter (2010)

As mentioned in the film, death is a sensitive matter. Different people, different views about what happens next. We are so much accustomed to action movies, with turn plots, with action that when a movie comes with an unanswered question by its own nature, we just feel disappointed. Hereafter is not like any of the previous Clint Eastwood movies.

For this film, one has to give credits to also to the script by Peter Morgan. The entire cast was excellent, I adored Matt Damon and Cécile De France, even Frankie McLaren (playing the 12-year old kid) with such a difficult role for its age.

If one wants to enjoy the film, he/she must see it with an open mind and without expecting a solution to the eternal question. Who knows, then some things may make sense 🙂

My rating: 08/10

Law Abiding Citizen (2009)

It really makes one wonder, what drives script writers and directors to use extreme, unprecedented violence to the extent no one has done before to attract attention. This becomes an even bigger question when there is a good story at hand, with enough originality. The same story could be an excellent film in the hands of a good director.

My rating: 05/10

True grit (2010)

The meaning of the film is displayed in the first few seconds: “The wicked flee when none pursueth”. The True Grit which is admired is not only of the fearless marshal who classes the villain but mainly of the 14-year-old girl, which has already understood how to deal with the world that deprived her of her father, asking for the murderer’s punishment.

A classic western created the masters Ethan Coen, Joel Coen, with an excellent cast, and a good story.

My rating: 08/10

The King’s Speech (2010)

The King’s Speech… There are a lot of feelings, thoughts and angles through which one may see this film. One might say that since there are so many people in misery, we may be spared watching the … misery of a King! But, leaving that aside (which is of course a very strong argument), and seeing just what the film presents, there is a beauty in many levels.

There is an innovative beginning with the view of a microphone taken from different angles, the walk of the King and his speech therapist along that misty road that seemed to have no ending, the view of the therapist’s family, with all sitting in the same room listening to the radio resembling to a renaissance painting. For some reason, these scenes are striking…

Then, there are the relationships between the people involved, mainly the King (Colin Firth) and the speech therapist, Lionel Logue (Geoffrey Rush). They are both exquisite in their performances, surrounded by an excellent cast.

There is a heavy, well justified, flavor of psychology running through the whole play, explaining the reasons of the King’s stammer. After all, a king is only human…

Finally, there is music, always eternal, Beethoven’s 7th symphony making a moving finale as the King finally manages to deliver his speech.

It is a film worth seeing, just for the two hours it makes you forget everything else, regardless of the fact that it bares no resemblance to anything happening around us these days. Tom Hooper seems promising.

My rating: 08/10

La jetée (1962)

Chris Marker, is one of the three writers of the Twelve Monkeys, one of the best Sci-Fi films ever filmed. La jetée is a film which, at its time, should be very impressive and still has a specific style which differentiates it from others. If you have not seen the Twelve Monkeys, do it! If you have, then seeing this short film will not add much to your cinephile portfolio. Heretic? May be…

My rating: 06/10

The Twelve Chairs (1970)

The Twelve Chairs”  is a film that I saw a couple of years after its production. I remember I laughed a lot back then… Seeing it recently, did not have the same effect on me. It is a comedy alright but with a lot more in it: a lot of irony about the roles and the lives of the people in the Soviet Union as opposed those in the previous political regime.  A solid interesting plot, a very good analysis on the characters, their motives, their beliefs. It made me wonder where Mel Brooks found such an ironic view of the happenings in Soviet Union: he based his screenplay on a translated Russian novel by Ilya Ilf. The same novel was the basis on another film “12 stulyev (1971)” which also means 12 chairs. I wonder if the difference in the rating between the two versions of the same novel is really authentic…

My rating: 06/10

Le conseguenze dell’amore (The consequences of Love) (2004)

The consequences of Love” is a film by with many qualities. Paolo Sorrentino, four years before “Il Divo“, has created this film: a mix of an initially misleading slow pace, leading later on to a crescendo of action and plot turns. Innovative scenario, intriguing characters, mystery and suspense are some of the film’s characteristics. Toni Servillo (who played Giulio Andreotti  in Il Divo – almost unrecognizable here) is a “mystery” man who falls in love (in his own, mysterious, way) with Olivia Magnani (wow!), this turning his (and several other people’s) life up-side-down.

One thing: after all the stylish Italian direction, camera movement, change of camera angles,  plot turns and character interactions, one is really prepared to see an equally rewarding ending. It just does not happen! It is like the screen writer got really bored or really pressed to get over with the bloody thing and … well, ended it the fastest way possible! Too bad: it would have got an eight!

My rating: 06/10