A lovely and sensitive Spanish film about an orphaned six-year-old girl who has to cope with her mother’s death and adjusting to a new life. Not counting visits to the Astor Theatre, I haven’t been to the cinema in (yikes) over four months, so this was a nice way to break the drought.
I’ve had something like a Danish withdrawal after binge-watching my way through three seasons of Borgen, the most excellent Danish political TV series. I got rather used to the sound of Danish vowels and occasional tak coming from my TV, so I watched this 2006 Academy Award nominee for Best Foreign Language Film.
This Swedish Palme d’Or-winning film is a sprawling satire of the contemporary art world and is a bit like a modern art installation itself: you’re not always sure about the artist’s intent, it may feel baffling, confronting or tedious, but at its best it can leave you with some indelible imagery and food for thought.
A mind-bending Spanish psychological thriller with Penelope Cruz, which later was remade as Vanilla Sky, an ill-received American version with Tom Cruise and, bizarrely, Penelope Cruz again. I’ve watched this in a rather groggy state of mind after a poor night’s sleep, and the movie’s twists and turns definitely perked up my brain by the end of it all.
Every still from this Polish black-and-white movie deserves to be put in a frame and hung on the wall – filmed with a photographer’s eye for composition and juxtapositions of light and dark, it’s one of the most striking films I’ve seen. It’s perhaps too restrained and minimalist for me to find it truly affecting, despite its emotional revelations, but the photography and the two compelling central performances make it a worthwhile watching.
Excellent Swedish adaptation of John Ajvide Lindqvist‘s macabre novel, which is one of the more original takes on the well-trodden vampire genre and is as far from the romantic and glamorous depictions of vampires in popular culture as you can imagine. It’s also a movie about children that is in no way meant for children.
Another movie I missed out on in the cinemas despite the best intentions, Lady Chatterley is a French adaptation of an earlier version of Lady Chatterley’s Lover, a once-notorious novel by D. H. Lawrence. Pretty tame by today’s standards (you’ll find much more explicit content in your Jackie Collins novel), at the time the book was banned for its frank descriptions of sex, use of unprintable words and a central romance between a high society woman and a working class man. Though I really wanted to see the film, I raised my eyebrows at the running time, which clocks at almost three hours, but if anything this movie is a proof that a good movie can never be too long.