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H. Feddern "demideniro" (London)

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Down By Law/Night On Earth [DVD]
Down By Law/Night On Earth [DVD]
Dvd ~ Tom Waits

9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Minimalist masterpieces herald the brilliance of independent cinema, 8 Sept. 2006
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Both these films are what many would describe as cult classics. Jarmusch entertains us with what are essentially some of the best celluloid that has come out of the US in the last twenty years.

Although his following is growing and vocal, Jarmusch is not mainstream; which is exactly the way is should be. His films are brilliant for their refusal to adhere to any normal film conventions. They aren't deep philosophical, proud films, yet they capture the normal facets and touches of modern day life that make them so charming. They focus on those special, small, unspectacular moments in life that we normally dismiss and never ponder on. These moments make us laugh, cry, grumble and sigh without any great effort.

Jarmusch forces us to acknowledge the forgotten elements of our lives that bind and constitute human existence without poncy, condescending monologues. The story is never full of twists or unexpected changes, for Jarmusch his characters are the story, like us - we have the power to form our destiny and future. Full credit to Jarmusch for staying belligent and uncompromising in his approach, he never accepts funds with 'strings attached' - and it shows, for his films are unparalleled for their charming naturalism. So many of his counterparts prefer to descend the route of pessimism and ultimately misanthropism; which I personally find unoriginal and cheap. Jarmusch is realistic, yet never dark and downcast in his approach. Its not easy to be positive without being superficial, these films being a great testament to Jarmusch's skill at creating realistic, not always likeable, but still amusing and interesting characters and situations.

Be happy and glad. Life is good. Go buy these films now.

Cool Hand Luke [1967] [DVD]
Cool Hand Luke [1967] [DVD]
Dvd ~ Paul Newman
Offered by best_value_entertainment
Price: £3.67

27 of 30 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Just excellent filmmaking, 4 Sept. 2006
This review is from: Cool Hand Luke [1967] [DVD] (DVD)
Cool Hand Luke is yet again proof of Paul Newman's iconic status as a actor. Given the fact Newman was 42 when this film was made, one has to acknowledge that he was something special and cinema rarely has produced such actors with such a raw charisma, such a warmth and presence in front of the camera.

This film is up there with 'The Sting' and 'Butch Cassidy' in terms of classic Newman. The script and characterisation is just as entertaining and quirky as anything else Newman has appeared in.

Cool Hand Luke is more an analysis in the pride of the male ego and the systematic attempt to break it. It takes many twists and turns, but Luke always seems to have to edge over the system, his inmates and its tyrannical guards and wardens. Although its ending may seem not the one the audience could have wished for, Newman plays his role with such vigour and energy that really it doesnt matter what ending this film has - its just fun watching someone as good as Newman in a film as good as this.

Check it out - The Very Best of Bobby Womack
Check it out - The Very Best of Bobby Womack
Price: £6.69

9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Soulful, moving and intelligent, 8 April 2006
Bobby Womack is one of the world's most underrated musicians. He has written and performed some of the best music of the last 30-40 years from 'Breezin' by George Benson to 'Across 110th Street'.
This album simply is amazingly introspective and touching at times. With many tracks that have a distinctive edge; but the strength is also its variety - it has bleak and sombre mood tracks such as 'Harry Hippie' but also those uplifting and entertaining ones too.
Bobby Womack has a great voice, but also a great capacity to harmonise his songs like few others and reach out to your spirit like few others can. Its a compelling listen and I would never hesitate in recommending it to anyone.

Weekend [1967] [DVD]
Weekend [1967] [DVD]
Dvd ~ Mireille Darc
Offered by videosanddvds
Price: £18.95

5 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Entertaining beginning becomes dwarfed by relentless polemic, 5 April 2006
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Weekend [1967] [DVD] (DVD)
'hmmmmm, now this is bizarre'. My thoughts exactly after watching this film. The non-existent conventions, the rambling monologues, the bitter and vitriolic characters, the plethora of techniques are came together to deliver a film without an apparent statement; artisitic, political or otherwise.
Technically this film is exceptional. It mixes the best of Godard's talents and brings a film that is kinetic and energy-laden at first. However, after the first act; as per usual in Godard films the plot basically halts and utter mayhem ensues. I do not really want to comment on the provocative content, because as many other reviews state it is revolting, repulsive and though-provoking - no more need be said.
Godard's polemics initially concentrate on materialism and consurism; it seems straightforward - then the carnage begins; random turmoil follows and the film then launches attacks on Western foreign policy, on human nature, on society and its foundations, on politics. The message never stops, and it never intends to be clear in its purpose. All that I can personally derive is that its not a meditation, rather a juxtaposation of the worst (or in Godard's view, the truth) of the human world, the human nature. It never redeems the flaws and barbarities of this world; its unshameful in its methods and its visuals.
'Weekend' is a fresh and original cinematic experience. It is very sickening and uncomfortable. Although its leftist wafflings are tiresome and the stagnation of the plot can be infuriating it is still a recommended buy despite its strong devices and content. Though for anyone for really knows and appreciates Godard this film serves as another unforgettable coup-de-maitre from one of the greatest directors who ever worked behind a camera.

Do The Right Thing [DVD] [1989]
Do The Right Thing [DVD] [1989]
Dvd ~ Danny Aiello
Price: £5.00

8 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Bordering between racist and brilliant, 1 April 2006
The film's best scene characterises the best and worst of life, race relations and this film. 'Radio Raheed' shows us two knuckle-dusters - one called 'LOVE' one called 'HATE' and describes that life is a constant battle between the two, yet love always prevails in the end. 'Do the Right thing' is in itself the same struggle between the great and sometimes excessive elements of Lee's talents.
Lee's work is very explosive, energy-laden and colourful. His characters are often repulsive, foul-mouthed and amazingly vivid. This film is no exception. It concentrates on the relationships between all the multiple characters - white, black and Korean. Although the dialogues are excellent and realistic they tend to get slightly heavy-handed sometimes. Especially the soliloquies are iritating at times due to their unrelenting tension and vibrancy, yet they are truthful and profound as well.
Credit must go to Lee for his vision and courage not to shy away from the unpleasant characterisations that are essential in order to truthfully depict life in multi-cultural communities. His plethora of antagonists from the indifferent Italian rolemodel 'Sal' and the elderly 'The Mayor', to the repulsive 'Pinot' and his black counterpart.
Ostensibly 'Do the Right thing' is a film about the underlying and undeniable tensions that always simmer between different races. However, it is more than just a study in race relations, its a study in people themselves; the duality of man, the uncomfortable tendencies all humans - black or white, have.
Although Lee seems to behold some grudges towards certain sections of American society at times it would be fair to say he treats all sides of the fence with equality and justice. 'Do the Right thing' is uncomfortable, unflinching and unrivalled visceral filmmaking on racial relationships. Even though it gets a little garish at times I would not hesitate from recommending it to anyone. Buy it now!

Husbands And Wives [DVD] [2002]
Husbands And Wives [DVD] [2002]
Dvd ~ Woody Allen
Price: £3.97

19 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Complex and intriguing - Woody Allen on top form!!, 24 Mar. 2006
Woody Allen is simply one of the best directors that has ever graced this great planet of ours. This film is again confirmation not only of his talent, but of his intellectual diversity and creative range.
This film does not eschew depicting the difficulties all relationships eventually must confront. Its portrayal of partnership problems is to say the least, uncomfortable, if not painful. Though, what do you expect? Allen is the master of interpersonal relationship analysis - this being again, another brilliant disection the subject.
The film starts with the breakup of a marriage that has been ended through mutual agreement. This breakup is then followed by each spouse finding younger, sexier partners; although the temporary renewal of physical passions stimulate some initial happiness - what we eventually see is that the couple have really hidden the true desires of their hearts all along.
Its never pretty to watch, but always interesting to divulge and ponder; what do we really crave in relationships? Why are the answers always locked away so far deep beneath the human heart? Why are the solutions so simple, yet so painful to implement?
This film is up there with Woody's best work - its one of his best scripts, although more serious it tells us just what we need, yet fear to hear.

Nashville [DVD] [1975] [Region 1] [US Import] [NTSC]
Nashville [DVD] [1975] [Region 1] [US Import] [NTSC]
Dvd ~ keith Carradine

21 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Good, the bad and the brilliant of America!, 24 Mar. 2006
A perpetual womaniser sings a ballad in a club in a desperate attempt to attract a woman he has been trying to cavout for a lengthy period. We see the eyes of three women in turn, who he has had alternate flings with as their faces fill with their heartfelt desires. We see it objectively; through Altman's subtle yet unostentatious photography - that simple, yet transcendental human emotion for each other. 'Nashville' is a gourgeous mosaic of those basic human relationships, characteristics, behaviour traits, lifestyles and attitudes that form our very being.
Altman is a great director, yet unlike many of his counterparts his portrayal of his characters is not full of cynicism and disdain. He never tries to alienate his protagonists from our sympathy. Through the plethora of characters he displays here we see not only the cross-section of America society, but most likely of life itself - each character's humanity is shown without a sugar-coat, yet without a vail of misanthrophy either.
'Nashville' is a sensitive and clever film. It flows seamlessly from situation to situation, from conversation to conversation. Altman's focus is to depict each character in turn with their dilemmas and flaws, but also their redemming qualities as well.
This is an excellent film, one of the best that America's ever produced. Buy it now without delay!!!

Manon Des Sources [DVD] (1986)
Manon Des Sources [DVD] (1986)
Dvd ~ Yves Montand
Offered by Discs4all
Price: £5.73

5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Emmanuelle Beart nude - need any more encouragement?!!, 23 Mar. 2006
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This film has everything. A beautiful woman, a beautiful landscape, and a tragically beautiful story.
I love the French and French culture. They make films like no other country. Stylish, slow and heart-rendering. Manon des Sources is no exception. Unlike most films that are set in such idyllic beauty, it transcends its setting with its excellent script rather than just let the viewer get entangled in the aesthetic quality of the direction it flows perfectly to allow the plot and acting to take position.
And what a story! My heart and mind were so moved at the final exposition. Unlike most Hollywood features the emotion is more sincere and affecting, it touched places of my soul that few films do. I don't want to give the film away. Watch, savour and sorrow.

400 Blows - Les Quatre Cents Coup [DVD] [1960]
400 Blows - Les Quatre Cents Coup [DVD] [1960]
Dvd ~ Jean-Pierre Léaud

30 of 31 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Poignant, beautiful, important - children and childhood, 1 Mar. 2006
Tears streamed down my face at the end of this film. It is just one of the most moving scenes in film history - often copied and imitated. The story of a neglected child and an unfair and judgemental society is simple, yet so brilliant.
Leaud plays a mischievous, yet normal boy whose mother and father hold an ambivalent relationship towards him. They are not necessarily malevolent people, but they have a misunderstanding towards their son - they represent the majority of parents who fail to nurture their children through society's attitudes and misgivings.
The elegance of the music and direction is so smooth and heightens the profound nature of the story. Truffaut's style has been plagiarised by so many great directors from Scorsese to Altman to Paul Thomas Anderson, its flowing and oozing sentiment.
If you don't like crying or being touched then definitely don't watch this film. Its sensitive, stirring and sincere. It pulls slowly yet cleverely at your heartstrings without brusque devices. Also, this film is proof that you can find very talented children that can act - unlike the awful child fodder poured out today.
Don't hesitate to buy this film, whatever the price!

Thief [DVD] [1981]
Thief [DVD] [1981]
Dvd ~ James Caan
Offered by HalfpriceDVDS_FBA
Price: £13.96

3 of 7 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not bad, but for Mann the best was yet to come..., 26 Feb. 2006
This review is from: Thief [DVD] [1981] (DVD)
This film is like an average chocolate bar. It tastes good while you eat it, you happily devour it without impediment, yet once its all over there is this inescapable feeling that there is material much better out there. Thief conjures up that very sentiment.
It is no doubt a good film. Mann is an intelligent and skilful director; probably the best in modern Hollywood. The theme he has here he then perfected in the 90's and 00's with 'Heat' and to a lesser extent 'Collateral'. The characters are good and well-formed - with a noteworthy script, yet its weaknesses are that althought the dialogue holds up and there are many memorable scenes you cannot be compelled to feel that it lacked the odd fine-tuning. An example; the main protagonist has a father-figure who desperately wants to be set from jail before he dies - his wish is granted, yet this interesting subplot is never revived and almost completely vanishes. It is because of moments like this that the film loses some power and impact.
Mann's talent is still adequately showcased with a dramatic, though slightly glib finale. Caan also fits well into the film playing a heavy, bravado yet sensitive thug struggling to shape his present and future.
The plot is essential and non-essential at the same time, the struggle between Caan's past demons and his precarious current existence is well executed with some great Mann setpieces that are still artistically triumphant, yet play second fiddle to the underlying concept of identity and morality.
I would advice this film to anyone who enjoys Michael Mann movies or anything to do with crime. Although it doesn't surpass 'Heat' its still is worth a viewing.

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