Funny Dirty Little War (No Habra mas Penas Ni Olvido)

BBB (out of 5) It might seem blasphemous to make a comedy inspired by Argentina’s dirty war under Videla’s dictatorship, but director Hector Olivera manages to pull it off without any disrespect. It presents a small village as the country’s microcosm, as a newly elected town official is accused of being a communist by one…

Rate this:

So Far From India

BBB.5 (out of 5) Mira Nair interviews a New York friend, like herself originally from India, and presents an examination on the life of an immigrant in America. Ashok Seth works a subway newstand after having left his homeland some years earlier. His parents, wanting to make sure he did not make an unworthy match…

Rate this:

Educating Rita

BBBB.5 (out of 5) Delightful modern update of Pygmalion, with Michael Caine as a befuddled alcoholic professor and Julie Walters as a working-class hairdresser who longs for a better life and a better education. Working in tutorials with Caine, Walters discovers that all she needs is the confidence to tackle her work and believe in…

Rate this:

Carmen

BBBB (out of 5) Carlos Saura’s fascination with Latin dance gets an excellent showcase in this beautiful film adaptation of Prosper Merimee’s novel and Bizet’s opera.   Antonio Gades, who starred in and choreographed Saura’s Blood Wedding, plays a fictionalized version of himself as director of a dance troupe who is inspired to adapt Carmen…

Rate this:

Entre Nous (Coup De Foudre)

BBBBB (out of 5) One of the very best films to come out of France in the eighties, and a masterpiece for director Diane Kurys. Just after the second World War, two women (Isabelle Huppert, Miou-Miou) are married to husbands because of circumstances other than true love. They meet at a school pageant and become…

Rate this:

The Ballad Of Narayama (Narayama-bushi ko) (1983)

BBBBB (out of 5) This masterpiece by Shohei Imamura satisfies on every level, including its story’s dramatic, tragic and comedic elements, a visual style that is natural and crafted at the same time, and a languorous pace that is in line with the best of art-house cinema. In a tiny peasant village in Japan of…

Rate this:

The Fourth Man (De Vierde Man)

BBB.5 (out of 5) In this highly enjoyable, overwhelmingly stylish film, Jeroen Krabbé plays a successful writer who accepts a gig giving a lecture to a book society in a small town outside of Amsterdam.  He meets a mysteriously sexy beauty salon owner with whom he spends a night and with whom he decides to…

Rate this:

The Big Chill

BBBB (out of 5) Years after they were close in college, a group of men and women gather together to attend the funeral of one of their friends (all you see is his leg, but it’s actually Kevin Costner, whose other scenes were all excised from the movie). They relive old times and express the…

Rate this:

Danton

BBB.5 (out of 5) With the revolution having fully transformed France, the country still finds itself in massive upheaval. Robespierre’s government has initiated the terrors, executing anyone considered even slightly in opposition to the new order, and Danton (Gerard Depardieu) has become the leading voice of disagreement.  Despite having been in support of the guillotine-happy…

Rate this:

Never Cry Wolf

BBBBB (out of 5) One of the best nature films ever made, and a powerful indictment of the harm that humans have caused to the animal world around us. Farley Mowat’s autobiographical novel is adapted majestically to the big screen by filmmaker Carroll Ballard, with Charles Martin Smith as a thinly disguised version of the author….

Rate this: