RECENTLY VIEWED – UP AND COMING – and BEC RESPONDING

Recently Viewed

The Danish film The Hunt is a MUST.  Set in the elementary school of a small town, the story concerns a beloved teacher who becomes the victim of a lie.  To tell more would be to make a list of spoilers.

All the acting is fine with Danish star Mads Mikkelsen especially outstanding as the teacher, Lucas.

I sat with an absorbed audience who watched in total silence, and left in total silence.

THE HUNT
THOMAS VINTERBERG
2012

*          *          *          *          *

The Past (mainly in French but directed by Iranian Asghar Farhadi)  is another emotional blockbuster.  Collaborator BKG suggests:  A runaway husband returns to his family and becomes trapped in his wife’s present.  The film unfolds in a manner that shows us more, then more, yet more, about the characters and their relationships:  the divorcing husband and wife; her two children; her current live-in lover; and his son.  It is unfair to dwell more on plot and spoil that gradual unfolding of startling surprises which The Past does so well.

Characters unlikeable at the start you will come to understand. These are not bad people.  They all appear to want to do what seems right in their eyes.  Why are they in turmoils of feeling? Here is another contemporary film that causes you to really care about its people.

The children are miraculously good and never interfere with the dramatic illusion.

THE PAST
ASGHAR FARHADI
2013

*          *          *          *          *

Once Upon a Time in America is huge but intimate; sprawling but delicate.  The art direction is its glory though it risks spoiling its achievement with considerable self-conscious beauty.  But the sense of period is delicious and tends to stylization rather than realism.  This is America, and the beauty is always erupting into raw sex and exploding into bloody violence.

Once Upon a Time is an essential film, and I loved it.  It must be too long, but I was never uninterested.

ONCE UPON A TIME IN AMERICA
SERGIO LEONE
1984

*          *          *          *          *

Up and Coming

If you are in Massillon, Ohio or can get to Massillon, be sure to attend ReelMassillon, a series at the Lions Lincoln Theatre presented by Kurtiss Hare of Akron Film + Pixel, in association with the Massillon Museum, Historic Massillon Main Street and ArtsinStark.

April 18     NO ONE KNOWS ABOUT PERSIAN CATS
a film by Bahman Ghobadi
Shahram Tabe, Iranian film critic of Toronto, will appear and engage in question
and answer with the audience.

May 30    THE LAST OF THE UNJUST
a film by Claude Lanzmann

June 6    THE EPIC OF EVEREST
a film by Capt. J.B.L. Noel

All screenings are at 7:00 P.M.

*          *          *          *          *

As part of the Massillon Museum’s spring program, the Lincoln Theatre will also show SUGIHARA,  a film by Robert Kirk about the man who saved the lives of many  Jews during World War ll. Kirk and one of the film’s producers, Diane Estelle Vicari, will be present at the screening to converse with the audience.  —    Lions Lincoln Theatre, Massillon, OH, May 8 at 6:30 P.M.

*          *          *          *          *

More from Akron Pixel +Film

For Akronites and Near-byers:  In the Akron Beacon Journal this morning, April ll, Rich Heldenfels brings exciting news of the coming of the NIGHTLIGHT, a new theater for downtown Akron.  Check out akronfilm.com and nightlightcinema.com.

*          *          *          *          *

Goodbye

Richard Schickel,  who wrote perhaps the best single paragraph ever composed about Judy Garland, is also spot-on about Mickey Rooney:  “All the child stars before Rooney had been insufferably sweet…Compared to someone like Shirley Temple, he was tonic…Rooney achieved a unique rapport with the parents in his audience.  They regarded him with much of the exasperated affection they had for their own children.”

(Richard Schickel, The Stars, Dial, 1962)

*          *          *          *          *

BEC RESPONDING

Don’t miss the 10 favorites list submitted by correspondent BEC.  (Click on COMMENTS.  Her is the first you will find.)   It is an intriguing list:  with a British film in the number one spot; another British film; British director Alfred Hitchcock’s first American assignment;  and an actor-directed film.  The list, which features movies where strong performances are significant, reminds me to fill in a long-standing viewing gap, Heat.  BEC’s ending comment about her struggle with choices reminds me of a point in my own listing when after choosing a first firm nine, I had six films tying for the 10th spot.

Comments on BEC’s list?

Comments on BKG’s list from the previous blog?

Let us hear from you, please.

NEXT Friday POST April 25
Until then,
See you at the movies,
Rick

 

                   

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s