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Lila "I ride with the Imp" (France)

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Nana (Oxford World's Classics)
Nana (Oxford World's Classics)
by Émile Zola
Edition: Paperback

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Zola's masterpiece, 9 Mar. 2008
With l'Assommoir, the best novel by Zola. This story of a young courtisane who breaks all rich men's hearts is a metaphor for the revenge of the working class against the bourgeoisie. Nana avenges the poor in her own way, she never forgets her origins, and that is what will be her downfall, eventually.
I also highly recommend the TV miniseries 'Nana' with Véronique Genest, broadcast in the 80's (available on amazon.fr). You'll agree that generally, film adaptations of novels are disappointing, in that case it's not. The adaptation is brilliant and perfectly captures the novel's atmosphere; the actress Veronique Genest incarnates a wonderful Nana, very faithful to the essence of the character.
But read the novel first!


In the Company of Men [DVD] [1998] [Region 1] [US Import] [NTSC]
In the Company of Men [DVD] [1998] [Region 1] [US Import] [NTSC]

6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The faithful portrayal of a real psychopath, 7 Feb. 2008
It's difficult to put 5 stars to such a movie. Not because it's not a good film, but because the reasons are different from any other reason why you would rate a film high.
In the Company of Men is NOT pleasant to watch. It's cruel, blunt, dark and above all, spot on in its portrayal of a real psychopath, a man with no conscience and no deep feeling. The snake-in-suit /charming / confident / slick type. The kind many women would be fooled by.
In the Company of Men tells the disturbing story of 2 successful men -- One, the psychopath. The other, his more human, but weak "friend". These snakes-in-suit, disappointed with their relationships with women, decide to take a general revenge on them, by selecting the most naive and uncorrupted girl they can find in the company they work for. The objective is to date her, make her feel loved and special, and then drop her in the cruellest way possible, to destroy her emotionally. There is absolutely no sentimentality in the narrative nor in the male characters (ie, they are not modern Valmont's from Dangerous Liaisons, who at the last minute realise they have fallen in love with their "victim"). Even the alleged "good guy" is just a coward, a mysoginist who passively accepts to take part in the "game" and has no real empathy for their feminine victim.
This movie also portrays in a realistic manner the psychopathic corporate environment in all its splendor.
The story is disturbing in that it really is coldly and clinically told : the monster guy is shown for what he is : cold and cynical, and a woman hater, with no feeling or remorse. He is shown without the caricatural touch one can find in American Psycho and which gave a somewhat grotesque, even 'funny' touch to the main character Bateman.
Despite the fact that In the Company of Men is not enjoyable to watch, it's a good illustration of pure psychopaths, therefore it SHOULD be seen, for pedagogic reasons. Maybe it can help people getting in touch with this problem of psychopathy, this disease spreading in our world like plague. To watch in parallel with the reading of the Sociopath Next Door, by Martha Stout.
(NB : IMDB rates this movie as a "comedy". Clearly, this is NOT a comedy!)


Children Of Men [HD DVD]
Children Of Men [HD DVD]
Dvd ~ Clive Owen
Offered by best_value_entertainment
Price: £2.49

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Very powerful, 30 Dec. 2007
This review is from: Children Of Men [HD DVD] (HD DVD)
I just saw this movie and it left a very strong impression on me. I was really shaken by its totally realistic portrayal of a fascist society, it was so believable it was even very painful to watch certain scenes -- like the shootings during the uprising in the camp, filmed very closely like a war reporter and not in a hollywoodian "aesthetic" fashion. I really identified with the characters and shed some tears several times.
I would like to compare this movie to another of my favourites : V for Vendetta -- Clearly, I found C of M more disturbing because far more realsitic than V, and thus more likely to awaken people to certain realities, whereas V's atmosphere of "superhero / spectacular movie" makes it less believable, less likely to awaken people, and yes, in a way it kind of misses its target. (Don't get me wrong, I LOVE V, but I don't think it has a potential for awakening people who are still totally unaware of the Terror of the situation : it's too far from being realistic in the way the theme is treated.)
What I also want to point out is the non "black or white" aspect of C of M, which shows the ponerization/corruption of governement AND resistance, thus revealing there is actually no resistance in the sense of "organised political/activist movement" (or if there is, they get killed : ie Julian's murder and Theo's death at the end).
FWIW, when I saw the Matrix in 1999, I didn't get it at all (I even fell asleep during the movie, which is quite ironic:)). Had I seen V at the same period, I would not have got it either. I consider myself as an average person, and as an average person, films like C of M impress me more. Another reason could also be that its touch is more European, just like Pan's Labyrinth (though the directors are Mexican), less special effects (their frequent use in many American movies can be irritating sometimes), less slick, and much rougher, which I like in European / other countries' movies (Irish movies for ex).
So, all in all, a very good and powerful movie which I recommend.


Children of Men [DVD]  [2006]
Children of Men [DVD] [2006]
Dvd ~ Clive Owen
Offered by A ENTERTAINMENT
Price: £3.00

9 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Very powerful, 30 Dec. 2007
This review is from: Children of Men [DVD] [2006] (DVD)
I just saw this movie and it left a very strong impression on me. I was really shaken by its totally realistic portrayal of a fascist society, it was so believable it was even very painful to watch certain scenes -- like the shootings during the uprising in the camp, filmed very closely like a war reporter and not in a hollywoodian "aesthetic" fashion. I really identified with the characters and shed some tears several times.
I would like to compare this movie to another of my favourites : V for Vendetta -- Clearly, I found C of M more disturbing because far more realsitic than V, and thus more likely to awaken people to certain realities, whereas V's atmosphere of "superhero / spectacular movie" makes it less believable, less likely to awaken people, and yes, in a way it kind of misses its target. (Don't get me wrong, I LOVE V, but I don't think it has a potential for awakening people who are still totally unaware of the Terror of the situation : it's too far from being realistic in the way the theme is treated.)
What I also want to point out is the non "black or white" aspect of C of M, which shows the ponerization/corruption of governement AND resistance, thus revealing there is actually no resistance in the sense of "organised political/activist movement" (or if there is, they get killed : ie Julian's murder and Theo's death at the end).
FWIW, when I saw the Matrix in 1999, I didn't get it at all (I even fell asleep during the movie, which is quite ironic:)). Had I seen V at the same period, I would not have got it either. I consider myself as an average person, and as an average person, films like C of M impress me more. Another reason could also be that its touch is more European, just like Pan's Labyrinth (though the directors are Mexican), less special effects (their frequent use in many American movies can be irritating sometimes), less slick, and much rougher, which I like in European / other countries' movies (Irish movies for ex).
So, all in all, a very good and powerful movie which I recommend.


The Wave: The Red Book v. 1
The Wave: The Red Book v. 1
by Laura Knight-Jadczyk
Edition: Paperback

8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A revelation, 5 Dec. 2007
I was first introduced to the Wave through the French translation published on the Web, and despite the average translation level, I was immediately drawn to it and couldn't stop reading for days. It was a revelation, and a powerful shock. What ? We would live in a Matrix ? 4th dimension critters would feed on our emotions, and sometimes even our flesh ? A gigantic wave would travel the cosmos and would currently be heading towards Earth ? 6th density light beings ? Millenia-old control system ?
As crazy as it sounded, it actually made perfect sense to me, it sounded logical. I'm sure people who feel everything is not quite right on this BBM have felt the same while reading the Wave. What we find in the Wave also strongly echoes Casteneda's writings and other writers such as Gurdjieff and Mouravieff.
Reading the Wave is not pleasant and definititely not comfortable, it has nothing to do with the New Age tenets of "everyone has a divine seed, and if you just send Love and Light to nasty people such as Bush, they will become as gentle as sheep". What a load of BS.
For those who are tired of lies and want the Light of Truth, I can only recommend reading the Wave series.


The Myth of Sanity
The Myth of Sanity
by Martha Stout
Edition: Paperback
Price: £10.16

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Truly necessary -- nobody's totally sane !, 14 Nov. 2007
This review is from: The Myth of Sanity (Paperback)
This book is a must-read, it provides a crucial introduction to the study and understanding of childhood trauma. Well written, in a clear and simple style (understandable by non-native English speakers such as myself) despite its complex subject, it illustrates for us the many ways a child can become dissociated due to some traumatic event (not necessarily parental abuse, it can be external causes totally independent of the child's family and upbringing). Now this is really scary in all its implications. Reading through the book, one realises how COMMON dissociation is. From the ordinary dissociation state while watching a movie to the most severe cases of Dissociative Identity Disorder (formerly known as Multiple Personality Disorder), one gets to realise that nobody's truly sane and devoid of dissociation issues. A scary thought, but a necessary realisation -- that's only through learning of these disorders that one gets to understand them and begins the process of healing, in order to regain a truly healthy psyche, a more united and coherent Self.
For the reader who wants to dive deeper into the subject of childhood trauma and the impact upbringing can have on our psychological make-up, the reading of Trapped in the Mirror (Elan Golomb), Unholy Hungers (Barbara E. Hort) and the Narcissistic Family (SD and RM Pressman) are highly recommanded excellent follow-ups.


The Believer [DVD] [2001]
The Believer [DVD] [2001]
Dvd ~ Ryan Gosling
Price: £5.99

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Compelling story and truly interesting take on Judaism, 14 Nov. 2007
This review is from: The Believer [DVD] [2001] (DVD)
I had seen the Believer at the cinema, and have recently seen it again in DVD. This movie had left a strong impression on me, and the feeling has been confirmed after watching it again.
It is the story (inspired by the true story of a certain Daniel Burros) of a young Neo-Nazi Jew taken in the net of contradictions between his religion/roots and his antisemitic ideology, between the quest for meaning and self-hatred. One might have feared clichés and simplistic psychology, but none of these in that movie. The actor (whose performance some newspapers rightly compared to De Niro's in Taxi Driver) perfectly incarnates this young man undergoing a metaphysicial crisis -- a rebel rejecting his roots and religion, but prisioner, despite himself, of his own identity, which will constantly catch him up.
Metaphysical questioning and very interesting reflexions on judaism makes this movie powerful, thought-provoking and excellent (careful though : several violent scenes).
The non-manicheistic, quite existentialist end brings more questions than answers and illustrates the inner questioning and complex / yet coherent psychology of Daniel, the protagonist.

In short, an intense and powerful movie, that I strongly recommend. Let me quote the words of Mr Maurice Samuel (a Jewish author) which echo Daniel's own questioning and self-destructive behaviour :

". . . we Jews,
the destroyers, will remain the destroyer forever. . . nothing that the
Gentiles will do will meet our needs and demands".

When it was released, the Believer didn't find a film distributor in USA, and remained confidential there -- given the anti-Hollywood treatment of the subject, this is no surprise. Yet the film was released in various European countries and Israel as well. It won the Grand Jury Prize in Sundance Festival in 2001.


The High Strangeness: of Dimensions, Densities, and the Process of Alien Abduction
The High Strangeness: of Dimensions, Densities, and the Process of Alien Abduction
by Laura Knight-Jadczyk
Edition: Paperback

9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A serious, objective book about the nature of our reality, 7 Nov. 2007
This work examines the possibility -- in the light of facts and through the study of dimensions and densities -- of the existence of hyperdimensional beings who would master and shape our reality.
Conscious of the heap of disinformation under which this subject has been (willingly) buried, Laura K-J separates the wheat from the chaff, and in all impartiality, extracts the quintessence : the real nature of hyperdimensional realities and the process of alien abductions. She reveals a shocking reality, far away from the comforting and sweet new age myths about our "space brothers".
An absolute must-read !


1984 [DVD] [1984]
1984 [DVD] [1984]
Dvd ~ John Hurt
Offered by Quality Media Supplies Ltd.
Price: £11.99

7 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Vision of an upcoming future ?, 7 Nov. 2007
This review is from: 1984 [DVD] [1984] (DVD)
V for Vendetta had strongly moved me, and the end is ecstatic and full of hope, but 1984 horrified and traumatized me. 1984 is the anti-V for Vendetta, the V which ends badly, where people don't wake up, where humanity is forever crushed, where History is denied. This movie was a shock for me (I haven't read the novel yet). I strongly recommand it. It's unforgettable, terrifiying and very efficient. I must add that the actors are fantastic. Richard Burton is excellent as an essential psychopath, a true monster who has nothing human whatsoever. 1984 touches the darkest abyss, and maybe that's whyt it's stronger than V for Vendetta, coz it really shows the horror of an existence in a 100% fascist regime where the most basic rights are denied. IMO, everybody should see it NOW (along with V for Vendetta, to keep some kind of balance and hope).

Here are a few slogans from the book/movie, which might remind you of the present neo-con propaganda :
War is Peace
Freedom is Slavery
Ignorance is Strength

... and perhaps the most distressing prophecy of the entire novel:
"If you want a picture of the future, imagine a boot stamping on a human face--for ever."

Terrible... and terribly prophetic (??)


V for Vendetta [DVD] [2006] [Region 1] [US Import] [NTSC]
V for Vendetta [DVD] [2006] [Region 1] [US Import] [NTSC]

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Governments should be afraid of their people, 4 Nov. 2007
Wow, this movie was such a wake-up call ! It really goes to the core of the issue : we, the mass, the populace so much despised by our elite, have been hypnotised to think that WE needed THEM to carry on with our lives, that we need THEM to show US the Way. The truth is the opposite, counter-echoing Chancellor Sutler's claim : "THEY need US". The Elite need the People to be maintained in power, that's why they feed us lies and brainwash us, dumbing us down, making us living in fear so that we won't revolt against their domination.
This wonderful movie shows us what would happened if people suddenly woke up and realised they've been deceived and manipulatesd by their governement. The deviant elite would be done, over, good bye, sayonara.
In this movie, it's V who plays the role of the wake up call. In real life, here and in a not so distant future, who will take on that role ? Will there be another V, hundreds, thousands of V's all shouting in One Voice : ENOUGH !" ? Or will we need something more powerful, like a kick in the butt in the form of Nuclear war and World fascism ?
We still have the choice, not for long but we still have it.
It's up to all of us.
Remember, remember, the 5th of November...


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