Featuring Leonardo DiCaprio, Cate Blanchett, Martin Scorsese, Christian Bale and Tom Hanks – to name just a few; Spielberg is a new Susan Lacy directed documentary about the highly respected director Steven Spielberg’s career… I’ll watch to learn more about Spielberg, of course. I really also just want to listen to a bunch of my favourite […]
In no particular order:
1. Schindler’s List (1993)
2. The Aviator (2004)
3. Elizabeth (1998)
4. Gandhi (1982)
5. Milk (2008)
“This is not the sort of film you “like” or “don’t like”. It’s a film that you experience – and then live with” (Matt Zoller Seitz).
“…wandering here over the desolate mountains – what an absurd situation!…I knew well, of course, that the greatest sin against God was despair; but the silence of God was something I could not fathom” (Rodrigues [Endo: 90]).
Martin Scorsese’s 28-years’ “passion” project culminated in the film “Silence“, based on the acclaimed novel by Shusaku Endo. The film is about two 17th century Portuguese Catholic priests, Father Rodrigues (Andrew Garfield) and Father Garupe (Adam Driver) who decide to travel to Japan in search of their former mentor, Father Ferreira (Liam Neeson), who, most believe, betrayed his holy cause in the foreign land. Touching delicate moral and religious issues, the film is powerful both in its vision and in its message, achieving its desired cinematographic goal to awe, thanks to Scorsese’s dedicated and masterful direction, breath-taking cinematography and inspiring original material. Although the plot is uncomplicated and could even be considered “thin”, underneath every action and thought of the main character lies (and could be sensed) a myriad of contradictory emotions; culturally-divisive inner turmoil; and dormant causes for the later spiritual/religious re-awakening.
Based on real events and adapted from the book by Richard Hough, ‘The Bounty’ tells the story of an expedition voyage of a British ship HMS Bounty to the island of Tahiti, the Pacific. Led by Captain William Bligh (Anthony Hopkins) and Master’s mate, Fletcher Christian (Mel Gibson), the ship soon crosses the most dangerous waters in search of an island full of bread plants. However, the harsh discipline of the Captain on board and the attractions of the tropical paradise soon become too irresistible for the crew. The eventual mutiny on the ship, headed by Christian, is only the beginning of the adventure in which the levels of maritime skill and endurance become the ultimate factors of survival.
‘To be, or not to be, that is the question’… ‘Anonymous’ is a film set in the Elizabethan era, and revolves around the idea that Shakespeare may not be the one who wrote his plays and poems. The theory here is that Shakespearean plays were written by the 17th Earl of Oxford, Edward de Vere, and the passed on to an intermediary by the name of Benjamin Johnson, who, in turn, then passed them on to Shakespeare. The latter then staged the plays, taking full credit for each of them.
The film, directed by Roland Emmerich and written by John Orloff, depicts quite beautifully the Shakespearian times. It puts an emphasis on the politics of play-writing at that time, incorporating Queen Elizabeth’s younger memories, and similarly to nearly all other films of this genre, involves the idea of a royal family feud over a legitimate heir to the throne. The movie cast is, unsurprisingly, predominantly British with Rhys Ifans (‘Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part I’ (2010)) in the role of Earl of Oxford; Vanessa Redgrave (‘Atonement ’(2007)) taking part of Queen Elizabeth; Rafe Spall (‘One Day’ (2011)) playing Shakespeare; and Jamie Campbell Bower (‘Sweeney Todd’ (2007)) as young Earl of Oxford, among others. All actors here are convincing, especially Redgrave, whose Queen Elizabeth is probably a fair match to Judi Dench’s Queen Elizabeth in ‘Shakespeare in Love’ (1998).