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Private Property [DVD]
Private Property [DVD]
Dvd ~ Isabelle Huppert
Price: £10.00

4.0 out of 5 stars "Quietly atmospheric and incisively sociological...", 30 Sept. 2013
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This review is from: Private Property [DVD] (DVD)
Belgian screenwriter and director Joachim Lafosse`s third feature film which he co-wrote with Belgian screenwriter Francois Pirot and Iranian screenwriter and director Philippe Blasband, premiered In competition at the 63rd Venice Film Festival in 2006, was screened in the Special Presentations section at the 27th Toronto International Film Festival in 2006, was shot on location in Belgium and is a Belgium-France-Luxembourg co-production which was produced by producer Joseph Rouschop. It tells the story about a mother named Pascale who lives in a house in a commune in Belgium with her two sons named Thierry and Francois. Pascale is barely on speaking terms with Thierry and Francois` father named Luc whom she divorced a decade earlier and is secretly having a relationship with her Flemish neighbour named Jan whom is encouraging her to sell her house and move away with him, but when Pascale begins expressing her future plans to Thierry and Francois she gets nothing but resistance.

Distinctly and precisely directed by Belgian filmmaker Joachim Lafosse, this finely paced fictional tale which is narrated from multiple viewpoints, draws a dense and objectively heartrending portrayal of a father whom is almost being prohibited from visiting his two sons, a mother whom is getting inspirations from her lover which could affect the lives of her children and her relationship with them and a heartily relationship between two close to inseparable twin brothers who are very pleased with living with their mother and kidding around with her. While notable for its naturalistic milieu depictions, sterling cinematography by cinematographer Hichame Alaouil, production design by production designer Anna Falguères and use of sound and colors, this dialog-driven story about conflicts of will and compromises within family relations where a woman whom has gotten the house her former husband bought and both of their boys to herself begins to consider leaving her job, her infants and her home which belongs as much to them as it does to her, depicts two involving studies of character and contains a timely instrumental score.

This authentic, at times humerous, cinematographic and reverently humane drama from the late 2000s which is set mostly on a grand property nearby a town in Belgium and where the idea of selling a family house and the introduction of a new man causes a student to revolt against his mother and proclaim what he and his brother whom is polishing doors is entitled to, is impelled and reinforced by its refined narrative structure, subtle character development and continuity, moral and psychological undertones, distinguished style of filmmaking, comment by Luc : "We just tried, and it didn`t work out. That`s all." and the poignant acting performances by French actress Isabelle Huppert, Belgian actors Jérémie Renier, Yannick Renier and Patrick Descamps, Belgian actress Raphaëlle Lubansu and Flemish actor Kris Cuppens. A quietly atmospheric and incisively sociological character piece which gained the SIGNIS Award - Honorable Mention Joachim Lafosse at the 63rd Venice Film Festival in 2006.


Keane (2 Disc Edition) [DVD]
Keane (2 Disc Edition) [DVD]
Dvd ~ Damian Lewis
Price: £15.00

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars "Quietly involving, modestly graceful and memorable...", 30 Sept. 2013
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This review is from: Keane (2 Disc Edition) [DVD] (DVD)
American screenwriter and director Lodge Kerrigan`s third feature film which he wrote, premiered in USA, was screened in the Special Presentations section at the 29th Toronto International Film Festival in 2004, in the Director`s Fortnight section at the 58th Cannes International Film Festival in 2005, was shot on location in the United States and is an American production which was produced by producer Andrew Fierberg. It tells the story about a man named William Keane whom is living on his own at a hotel in New York City, USA. Half a year ago William`s then six-year-old daughter named Sophie vanished from a bus terminal called Port Authority, and ever since he has been returning there to look for her. His whole existence revolves around his thoughts about his only child which has and is controlling his life, but then one day William overhears a woman disputing with the hotel manager and offers to help her.

Distinctly and intimately directed by American filmmaker Lodge Kerrigan, this finely paced fictional tale which is narrated mostly from the protagonist`s point of view, draws a humane and gripping portrayal of an American man and his afflicting and disheartening attempts at coming to terms with a disappearance which has left him with no answers as to what really happened to his adolescent daughter. While notable for its naturalistic and atmospheric milieu depictions, fine cinematography by cinematographer John Foster and low-keyed production design by production designer Petra Barchi and costume design by costume designer Catherine George, this character-driven and monologue-driven story about grief and disability where a former husband and father is striving to release himself from his mental anguish which is disorienting him and darkening his sanity, depicts an internal and heartrending study of character.

This authentic, at times humerous, somewhat conversational and psychological drama from the early 2000s which is set in New York City, USA during a spring in the early 21st century and where a person whom is possessed by his yearning befriends a waitress named Lynn and her seven-year-old daughter named Kira who reminds him of who he is and allows him to see through his anguish, is impelled and reinforced by its loose narrative structure, substantial character development, subtle continuity, distinct realism, efficient editing by film editor Andrew Hafitz, use of music, acute scenes between William, Lynn and Kira, the exceptionally good acting performances by American actor Damian Lewis and the eloquently understated acting performances by American actresses Abigail Breslin and Amy Ryan. A quietly involving, modestly graceful and memorable narrative feature and one of the many poignant American independent films.


Open Hearts [DVD]
Open Hearts [DVD]
Dvd ~ Mads Mikkelson
Price: £3.99

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "Acutely and gracefully romantic...", 12 Sept. 2013
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This review is from: Open Hearts [DVD] (DVD)
Danish screenwriter, producer and director Susanne Bier`s seventh feature film which was written by Danish screenwriter Anders Thomas Jensen, is based on an idea by Susanne Bier. It premiered at the 30th Norwegian International Film Festival Haugesund in 2002, was screened in the Contemporary World Cinema section at the 27th Toronto International Film Festival in 2002, in the Official Selection section at the 50th San Sebastián International Film Festival in 2002, was shot on location in Denmark and is a Danish production which was produced by Danish producer Vibeke Windeløv. It tells the story about a geography student named Joachim whom is going on a mountain climbing trip to Patagonia, South America and who on the day after having proposed to his 25-year-old girlfriend named Cæcilie who is a chef, is hit by a car and hospitalized. Whilst Cæcilie is waiting to see Joachim at the hospital, she is introduced to a doctor named Niels who lives in Copenhagen, Denmark with his wife named Marie and their 6-year-old son named Emil, 8-year-old son named Gustav and 14-year-old daughter named Stine who is in high school and who is having a fall out with her best friend regarding her boyfriend. Niels tells Cæcilie who he is and after talking with Marie who feels responsible for what has happened to Joachim, he begins spending time with Cæcilie.

Distinctly and subtly directed by Nordic filmmaker Susanne Bier, this finely paced fictional tale which is narrated from multiple viewpoints, draws a profoundly heartrending portrayal of a Danish woman who goes out of her way to get her boyfriend to love her like he did before his accident, a Danish father and husband who instigated by his and his wife`s consciousness makes himself available for her and a concerned daughter`s relationship with her father. While notable for its distinct and naturalistic milieu depictions and fine cinematography by Danish cinematographer Morten Søborg, this dialog-driven and narrative-driven story about fate`s intervention in the lives of ordinary people where a coincidental accident brings people together, separates them and affects each and every one of them and where human compassion leads to love and sorrow, depicts four humane and interrelated studies of character and contains a great and timely score by composer Jesper Winge Leisner.

This sociological, at times humerous and utterly gripping drama from the early 2000s which is set in the capital city of Denmark in the early 21st century and where a daughter wonders why her father can buy a woman he has just met lots of furniture when he can`t even buy her a dress, and a charming and lively man becomes an unrecognizable person after being paralysed from his neck and down, is impelled and reinforced by its cogent narrative structure, substantial character development, subtle continuity, natural and endearing characters, intimate realism, distinguishable depiction of interpersonal relations and the graciously heartfelt acting performances by Danish actors Mads Mikkelsen and Nikolaj Lie Kaas and Danish actresses Sonja Richter, Paprika Steen and Stine Bjerregaard in her debut feature film role. An acutely and gracefully romantic character piece which gained, among other awards, the Bodil Award for Best Danish Film at the 56th Bodil Awards in 2002.


The Crying Game [DVD] [1992]
The Crying Game [DVD] [1992]
Dvd ~ Stephen Rea
Offered by The Happy Zombie
Price: £4.35

6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars "Prominently atmospheric, incisively humorous...", 12 Sept. 2013
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This review is from: The Crying Game [DVD] [1992] (DVD)
Irish screenwriter, producer and director Neil Jordan`s seventh feature film which he wrote, premiered at the 49th Venice Film Festival in 1992, was screened at the 17th Toronto International Film Festival in 1992, was shot on location in England and Ireland and is a UK-Japan co-production which was produced by producer Stephen Woolley. It tells the story about an Irish Volunteer in the IRA named Fergus Clegg who whilst staying with a small group of other IRA terrorists in Belfast, Northern Ireland kidnaps an English soldier named Jody whom a woman named Jude has lured into a trap. Whilst guarding the soldier who believes that it is only a matter of time before he will be killed, Fergus becomes acquainted with him an learns about his girlfriend named Dil who works at a hair salon in the capital city of England, but as Fergus begins to appreciate Jody`s company and regard him as his friend he is assigned to assassinate him by his superior named Peter.

Distinctly and precisely directed by Irish filmmaker Neil Jordan, this finely paced fictional tale which is narrated mostly from the two main characters` viewpoints, draws an intriguing and multifaceted portrayal of an Irishman who travels to London, England to honor a friend`s last wish and to get away from his associations with the Irish Republican Army. While notable for its variegated and naturalistic milieu depictions, sterling cinematography by English cinematographer Ian Wilson, production design by production designer Jim Clay and use of colors and light, this character-driven and narrative-driven story about deception, attraction and overcoming one`s preconceptions where a hairdresser and singer whom has just left her boyfriend one day gets a new customer who introduces himself as a Scottish native and later shows up at the bar where she sings, depicts two interrelated and charming studies of character and contains a great score by English composer Anne Dudley.

This somewhat political, conversational and eloquently romantic psychological thriller from the early 1990s which is set in Belfast, Northern Ireland and London, England during the Troubles in Northern Ireland in the late 20th century and where a man presents himself with another name than his own to a stranger he only knows from a picture, is impelled and reinforced by its cogent narrative structure, substantial character development, subtle continuity, endearing and colorful characters, brilliant dialog, merging of themes and genres, timely use of music and remarkable acting performances by Irish actor Stephen Rea, American actor Jaye Davidson in his debut feature film role, English actress Miranda Richardson and American actor, producer and director Forest Whitaker. A prominently atmospheric, incisively humorous and memorable love-story which gained, among numerous other awards, the Alexander Korda Award for Best British Film at the 46th BAFTA Awards in 1993.


Beyond the Hills [DVD]
Beyond the Hills [DVD]
Dvd ~ Cosima Stratan
Offered by NextDayEntertainment
Price: £6.49

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "Phonetic, dramatic and tragically heartrending...", 16 Aug. 2013
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This review is from: Beyond the Hills [DVD] (DVD)
Romanian screenwriter, producer and director Cristian Mungiu`s fourth feature film which he wrote and produced, is based on real events which took place in Moldova in 2005 and two non-fictional novels by Romanian author Tatiana Niculescu Bran. It premiered In competition at the 65th Cannes International Film Festival in 2012, was screened in the Masters section at the 37th Toronto International Film Festival in 2012, was shot on location in Romania and is a Romania-France-Belgium co-production. It tells the story about a 24-year-old woman named Alina who travels by train from Germany to Romania where she is reunited with her friend named Voichita whom she was separated from after they left the orphanage they lived in and choose different paths. Voichita whom has become a nun at an Orthodox monastery now lives up in the mountains nearby a village with a monk called Papa and a sister called Mama whom she and the other nuns who lives there regards as Father and Mother superior. Alina is allowed to stay with Voichita after Voichita tells the priest about Alina`s situation, but Alina is not a believer in the same sense as the other ones there and when she realizes how devout and accustomed her former roommate has become to her new life, she begins to question the monk.

Distinctly and engagingly directed by European filmmaker Cristian Mungiu, this finely paced and somewhat fictional tale which is narrated from multiple viewpoints though mostly from the two main characters` viewpoints, draws a consistently gripping and dense portrayal of how a Romanian woman reacts when she learns that the only person in the world whom she trusts and loves has developed an unconditional love for God and renounced her love for real human beings, and how the monk and nuns at a monastery reacts when a woman who does not share their beliefs rocks their boat in the name of love. While notable for its naturalistic milieu depictions, low-keyed and nuanced cinematography by cinematographer Oleg Mutu, production design by production designers Calin Papura and Mihaela Poenaru, costume design by costume designer Dana Paparuz and use of sound, this dialog-driven and narrative-driven story about intentions, choices, the transformation of a person`s personality through indoctrination and the, in this particular case, conflict between sanity and hysteria where materialism and science is replaced by imposed solitude and superstitious experimenting on human lives, depicts two interrelated studies of character about two friends with afflicting and harsh backgrounds who are united by a human connection and separated by religious doctrines.

This psychological, literary, non-judgmental and atmospheric love-story which was chosen as Romania`s official submission to the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film at the 85th Academy Awards in 2013, which is set during a spring in a patriarchal cloister in Romania in the 21st century and where a minor community is trying to get their church consecrated by a bishop, a woman tries to the get her friend to move to Germany with her and religion is a character in itself which confines and directs the other characters, is impelled and reinforced by its cogent narrative structure, substantial character development, efficient continuity, masterful screenplay, multiple and interrelated themes, unsettling undertones, moral intricacies, refined characters, thorough depiction of the nuns` lifestyle, the pivotal scene towards the end when the voice of reason takes command, the subtly understated acting performances by Romanian actresses Cosmina Stratan and Cristina Flutur in their debut feature film roles and the fine acting performances by Moldovan actor Valeriu Andruita and Romanian actress Dana Tapalaga. A phonetic, dramatic and tragically heartrending mystery which gained, among several other awards, the award for Best Director Cristian Mungiu and the award for Best Actress Cosmina Stratan and Cristina Flutur at the 65th Cannes Film Festival in 2012.


The Hunt (Jagten) [DVD]
The Hunt (Jagten) [DVD]
Dvd ~ Mads Mikkelsen
Price: £4.99

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "Dramatic, poignant and rightfully provocative...", 16 Aug. 2013
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This review is from: The Hunt (Jagten) [DVD] (DVD)
Danish screenwriter and director Thomas Vinterberg`s eight feature film which he co-wrote with Danish screenwriter and director Tobias Lindholm and co-produced, premiered In competition at the 65th Cannes International Film Festival in 2012, was screened in the Special Presentations section at the 37th Toronto International Film Festival in 2012 and is a Danish production which was shot on location in Denmark and produced by Danish producer and screenwriter Morten Kaufmann and Danish producer Sisse Graum Jørgensen. It tells the story about Lucas, a recently divorced middle-aged man who just began working at a kindergarten and who wishes to spend more time with his teenage son Marcus who lives with his mother. After starting a romance with a foreign woman named Nadja things improve, but one day during a conversation with Grethe who runs the day-care center, he learns that a girl named Klara has told her an unsettling story about him. In a matter of days a spark is turned into a flame and a harmonic village into an irrational witch-hunt against one individual.

Finely and acutely directed by Danish filmmaker Thomas Vinterberg, this finely paced fictional tale which is narrated from multiple viewpoints though mostly from the main character`s point of view, draws an instantly involving and profoundly heartrending portrayal of a little girl who after being unintentionally hurt by a well-liked man whom she has a childhood crush on, unknowingly and with only a few words incriminates him by expressing her anger to the head of the kindergarten. While notable for its naturalistic rural milieu depictions, fine production design by Danish production designer Torben Stig Nielsen, cinematography by Danish cinematographer Charlotte Bruus Christensen, editing by Danish film editors Janus Billeskov Jansen and Anne Østerud, use of sound and realism, this character-driven and narrative-driven psychological drama about family relations, friendship and irrevocable accusations which is set during a late winter in Denmark, depicts a refined study of character and contains a good score by Danish composer Nikolaj Egelund.

This somewhat romantic, at times humorous, atmospheric and tangible intrigue which has been chosen as Denmark`s official submission to the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film at the 86th Academy Awards in 2014 and where a friendship is tested, a hunter becomes the hunted and the question of guilt transforms ordinary people into paranoid savages, is impelled and reinforced by its cogent narrative structure, subtle character development, mysterious characters, brilliant writing, the tailor-made though distinct and accomplished acting performance by Danish actor Mads Mikkelsen, the understated acting performance by Danish actor Thomas Bo Larsen and the impressively authentic acting performance by child actress Annika Wedderkopp. A dramatic, poignant and rightfully provocative tale which gained, among other awards, the award for Best Actor Mads Mikkelsen and the Vulcain Prize of the Technical Artist Charlotte Bruus Christensen for outstanding cinematography at the 65th Cannes Film Festival in 2012.


Shell [DVD]
Shell [DVD]
Dvd ~ Joseph Mawle
Offered by vivaverve
Price: £4.99

12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "Mythical, cinematographic and mysteriously atmospheric...", 8 Aug. 2013
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This review is from: Shell [DVD] (DVD)
Scottish screenwriter and director Scott Graham`s feature film debut which he wrote, premiered in the New Directors section at the 60th San Sebastián International Film Festival in 2012, was shot on location in Scotland and is a UK production which was produced by producers David Smith and Margaret Matheson. It tells the story about a 17-year-old woman named Shell who lives with her father named Pete at a gas station in the Scottish countryside which he made years ago. Shell spends most of her days waiting for new customers and most of the time meets people who are just passing by. She has become friendly with a middle-aged man named Hugh who usually makes a stop at their place when he is on his way to see his children who lives with their mother and is sometimes visited by a man close to her age named Adam who works at a sawmill nearby and who seeks her company, but Shell`s only constant is her father whom she has grown as attached to as any daughter could to her father.

Distinctly and acutely directed by Scottish filmmaker Scott Graham, this quietly paced fictional tale which is narrated mostly from the main character`s point of view, draws a silently reflective and consistently moving portrayal of a strangely though understandably affectionate relationship between a man whom is suffering both from illness and personal experiences and his daughter whose only communication with the outside world, which is an enigma to her, is through brief encounters with various passers-by. While notable for it`s naturalistic and prominent milieu depictions, evocative and masterful cinematography by cinematographer Yoliswa Gärtig, fine production design by production designer James Lapsley and use of sound and music, this narrative-driven story about blood ties and an increasingly isolating dependency that has kept two people inseparable, depicts two interrelated studies of character regarding two relatives who are becoming painfully aware of how chained they are to each other and how stuck they have become.

This refined, situational and authentic coming-of-age drama which is set mostly at a remote roadside petrol station in the Scottish highlands during an autumn and where a single parent and his only child whom is in the transition between adolescence and adulthood is being internally changed and differently affected by the majestic landscape which surrounds and contrasts them and is a character in itself, is impelled and reinforced by it`s fleeting narrative structure, substantial character development, subtle continuity, graceful melancholy and psychological depth, poignant conversations, discreet humour, humane characters and the perceptive acting performances by Scottish actress Chloe Pirrie, English actor Joseph Mawle, Irish actor Michael Smiley, Scottish actress Kate Dickie and Scottish actor Iain De Caestecker. A mythical, cinematographic and mysteriously atmospheric character piece about the human condition and a timeless narrative feature which is one of the finest Scottish films in recent years.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Dec 18, 2013 8:23 PM GMT


Mea Maxima Culpa: Silence in the House of God [DVD]
Mea Maxima Culpa: Silence in the House of God [DVD]
Dvd ~ Chris Cooper
Offered by NextDayEntertainment
Price: £5.71

4.0 out of 5 stars "Informative, revealing, praiseworthy...", 8 Aug. 2013
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American producer and documentary filmmaker Alex Gibney`s documentary feature which he wrote and co-produced, premiered in the Documentaries section at the 37th Toronto International Film Festival in 2012, was shot on location in Ireland and Italy and is an American production which was produced by producers Kristen Vaurio, Alexandra Johnes, Todd Wider and Jedd Wider. It tells the story about four deaf men named Terry Kohut, Gary Smith, Arthur Budzinski and Pat Kuehn who during the 1950s-1970s lived at a Catholic school for hearing children called St John`s school for the deaf which they had come to wishing to become good Roman Catholics. As children staying in that individual community which they viewed as a place of love, Terry, Gary, Arthur and Pat was, amongst many other children, singled out by a man of significant authority named Lawrence C. Murphy. This teacher and theologian who was raised in the city of Milwaukee, Wisconsin in the US, who in 1950 as a 25-year-old man became legally incorporated as a priest in 1950 and thirteen years later was promoted to director of St John`s, was loved by all of the children at the school who sought for his attention, had a way of getting them to follow him wherever he wanted them to and do whatever he wanted them to do and used his pedagogical skills and superior stature to psychologically abuse them so that they would be oblivious and comply when he sexually assaulted them.

Subtly and precisely directed by American filmmaker Alex Gibney, this finely paced documentary which is narrated by Alex Gibney and from multiple viewpoints, draws a multifaceted portrayal of four men`s courageous, arduous and determined fight for justice and a worldwide investigation of the Vatican which was instigated by a single letter which was written by a student at St John`s in the early 1970s to a Cardinal named Angelo Sodano, an Irish singing priest and an Italian priest and fundraiser for the Catholic Church who founded the Legion of Christ. Through the four men whose stories are voiced by American actors Chris Cooper, Ethan Hawke, Jamey Sheridan and John Slattery, pictures, newspaper articles, 8mm video recordings, a promotion video, news clips, recreations interviews with a mental health counsellor with 18 years of experience as a Benedictine Monk who studied celibacy in the priesthood for two and a half decades, a former Benedictine Monk who was given a special assignment by the Church, a former senior boys dorm supervisor at St John`s, Gary Smith`s attorney, a seasoned priest and public whistle-blower with a doctorate in canon law named Thomas Doyle, an Italian Vatican correspondent named Marco Politi, a Rome correspondent, a human rights lawyer, an Irish television reporter, an Irish co-founder of a website, suspended by the Vatican, called CountMeOut which encourages Irish citizens to leave the Catholic Church, an Italian co-founder of a website called Anticlericale, an American national religion correspondent for the New York Times and an Archbishop in the parish of Milwaukee, this narrative-driven non-fictional feature which examines what happened after a student accused a member of the Vatican of child molestation in the late 20th century, renders a history of sexual abuse within this absolute monarchy which traces as far back as 1700 years.

This thorough, sociological, somewhat historic, at times astoundingly humerous, considering the methods believed and suggested as the "cure" for paedophile clergymen and solutions to the Vatican`s problem with these men, and audaciously and prominently critical documentary, is impelled and reinforced by its fragmented narrative structure, architectural and atmospheric cinematography by cinematographer Lisa Rinzler, timely score by composers Ivor Guest and Robert Logan, the interrelated story of a former student at St John`s, the poignantly contrasting scene from an animated film, the insightful comments by the interviewees and the unflattering depiction of the today internationally recognized state and theocracy in Rome, Italy which was established during the late 1920s when Italy was ruled by a fascist regime and where the holy Pope is head of state and government and has the sole and utmost political and judicial power. An informative, revealing, praiseworthy and somewhat foreseeable documentary feature about double standards, crime, the parody of power and the unjustifiable and unlawful silence of those many clerics, sworn to absolute secrecy, which may have protected their independent authority from another scandal for a while, but which only served to cause more sexual crimes from the holy fathers whom they shielded and who kept on murdering the innocence of children.

The importance of the media, the parents and all the other men and women who put pressure on the ministry is evident in this emphatic and empathetic piece of filmmaking which questions the hierarchy within the Vatican, which is dedicated to the students of St. John`s school for the deaf, where many revering Roman Catholics speaks their mind and where twelve words uttered as expressively as possible through sign language lingers. "I`m not talking about religion, I`m talking about child molestation." - Bob Bolger


Post Tenebras Lux [DVD]
Post Tenebras Lux [DVD]
Dvd ~ Nathalia Acevedo
Offered by vivaverve
Price: £5.49

4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars "Prominently atmospheric, poetically cinematographic and distinguishable...", 2 Aug. 2013
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This review is from: Post Tenebras Lux [DVD] (DVD)
Mexican screenwriter, producer and director Carlos Reygadas` fourth feature film which he wrote and co-produced, is inspired by personal experiences. It premiered In competition at the 65th Cannes International Film Festival in 2012, was screened in the Wavelengths section at the 37th Toronto International Film Festival in 2012, was shot on location in Mexico, England, Spain and Belgium and is a Mexico-France-The Netherlands-Germany co-production which was produced by producer Jaime Romandia. It tells the story about a married couple named Natalia and Juan who lives in a grand house in the countryside in Mexico with their children. Whilst the husband attends an AA meeting and his wife stays at home with their housemaid named Chelita, their daughter named Rut who likes to be told stories plays with their cows and their son named Eleazar who admires Peter Parker has a vision of a devil in one of his dreams.

Distinctly and brilliantly directed by Mexican filmmaker Carlos Reygadas, this quietly paced fictional tale which is narrated from multiple viewpoints though mostly from the four family members` viewpoints, draws an instantly intriguing portrayal of a man who has a treasurable life, but who lacks the perception to see it. While notable for its naturalistic and various milieu depictions, distinct cinematography by Mexican cinematographer Alexis Zobé, production design by production designer and producer Gerardo Tagle, costume design and use of sound, light, colors and music, this narrative-driven, somewhat sociological and modestly existentialistic story about human experiences and co-existing realities which has a sense of love, a sense of mystery and an appreciation of life which is perceived through the many cinematic scenes created by a filmmaker who paints with his camera and who continues envisioning new perspectives to cinema, depicts an incisive study of character about a man who doesn`t fully recognize how fortunate he is.

This opaque, surprising, at times humerous, interpretative and reflective drama which is set mostly in a Mexican village and where a father and husband acquaints a tree cutter who has a troubled background named Seven and an English rugby team is preparing for their next match, is impelled and reinforced by its fragmented narrative structure, subtle character development, singular and, without exaggerating, extraordinary style of filmmaking, the children's viewpoints, the masterful scenes of the exploring daughter, understated acting performances by Mexican actress Nathalia Acevedo and Mexican actor Adolfo Jiménez Castro and the fine acting performances by the child actors. A prominently atmospheric, poetically cinematographic and distinguishable narrative feature which is a hymn to family life and which gained, among other awards, the award for Best Director Carlos Reygadas at the 65th Cannes Film Festival in 2012.


Cathy Come Home [DVD] [1966]
Cathy Come Home [DVD] [1966]
Dvd ~ Carol White
Price: £6.00

5.0 out of 5 stars "Revering, unsentimental and life-affirming...", 2 Aug. 2013
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This review is from: Cathy Come Home [DVD] [1966] (DVD)
English screenwriter and director Ken Loach`s television play which he co-wrote with English screenwriter Jeremy Sandford (1930-2003), is partly inspired by real events. It premiered on BBC in 1966, was shot on locations in England and is an English production which was produced by English film and television producer Tony Garnett. It tells the story about a woman named Cathy Ward and a man named Reg who decides to form a family together after he has gotten himself a good job. Cathy and Reg gets married, moves into a new posh apartment in London, England and Cathy gives birth to their first child named Sean, but then Reg has an accident at his job and is put on sickness benefit. As Cathy starts looking for a place for them to live she learns that being a family has no advantages on the housing market and all though Reg is on the road to recovery, their promising family life turns into an ongoing strive to get themselves a new home in a society where thousands of people are on waiting lists to find a place to live, and a matter of survival.

Distinctly and engagingly directed by European filmmaker Ken Loach, this finely paced and somewhat fictional tale which is narrated by the female protagonist and mostly from hers and the male protagonist`s viewpoints, draws a dense and unflinchingly heartrending portrayal of a married couple from the working-class who as they welcome more lives into their family becomes one of the many people of England who has to endure life in unjustifiable living conditions. While notable for its distinct and naturalistic milieu depictions and fine black-and-white cinematography by English cinematographer Tony Imi (1937-2010), this narrative-driven and monologue-driven story about homelessness and social conditions depicts two humane studies of character about a father who goes from one job to another to support his family, a decent and caring mother who raises her children and moves from one place to another with her spouse and how these two kindred spirits are separated by the circumstances they are faced with, contains a timely score.

This political, conversational, at times humerous and sociological documentary drama from the late 1960s which is set in England in the early 1960s and where two English citizens who after having established themselves as a family in Great Britain in the mid-20th century becomes, as one of the narrator`s so eloquently puts it, casualties of the welfare state, is impelled and reinforced by its cogent narrative structure, substantial character development, efficient continuity, multiple viewpoints and voice-over narrations, gracious characters and the involving acting performances by English actress Carol White (1943-1991) and English actor Ray Brooks. A revering, unsentimental and life-affirming drama which nearly half a century ago was and still is an important acknowledgment of those many ordinary people from various parts of society who unwillingly are degraded to vagrants and where the fragments of fiction is brought to insignificance by the prominent authenticity which Ken Loach consistently maintains in his films.


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