Tuesday, September 09, 2014

Like Father Like Son

Japan 2013


Details IMDB
Seen 8 September 2014

Ratings from other sources

IMDB 7.8/10


The adventures of Gustave H, a legendary concierge at a famous hotel from the fictional Republic of Zubrowka between the first and second World Wars, and Zero Moustafa, the lobby boy who becomes his most trusted friend.




My ratings 8.0/10

My impressions:

Past events affect everyone involved whether we are a willing party or not. The efforts of the past lingers affecting the present. Do we forge ahead and forget the past and concentrate on the present and future? Those feelings that evolve through time do not disappear in an instant. Gently shall we go a step at a time.

Impressive ensemble acting backed by a well written script gave the story a believable feel. The child actors are a delight to watch.


Thursday, September 04, 2014

The Grand Budapest Hotel

USA 2014


Details IMDB
Seen 3 September 2014

Ratings from other sources

IMDB 8.2/10

The adventures of Gustave H, a legendary concierge at a famous hotel from the fictional Republic of Zubrowka between the first and second World Wars, and Zero Moustafa, the lobby boy who becomes his most trusted friend.





My ratings 8.0/10

My impressions:

A roller coaster, delicious smorgasbord of characters amidst an approaching war. The old era will end soon and a new outlook is on the horizon. That would not come to the fore until a few loose ends are tied up. Layers of human foibles are highlighted. The ensemble cast gave a rip roaring performance.

Delightful.


Thursday, August 28, 2014

The Congress

France 2013


Details IMDB
Seen 27 August 2014

Ratings from other sources

IMDB 6.7/10


An aging, out-of-work actress accepts one last job, though the consequences of her decision affect her in ways she didn't consider..




My ratings 7.0/10

My impressions:

What a wonderful idea. To be able to escape reality but how much do we want to immerse ourselves in that world. Reality is not always pleasant but despite its shortcomings, there is the assurance that what we encounter is for all intents and purposes the real situation. A hard choice when love comes into the equation. Or a simple decision with no guarantees of its consequences.

An engaging story.



Sunday, July 13, 2014

Exotica

Canada 1994


Details IMDB
Seen 12 July 2014

Ratings from other sources

IMDB 7.2/10


The 'Exotica' is a nightclub on the outskirts of Toronto, where Eric, DJ and MC, watches nightly as his ex-girlfriend Christina performs. A regular customer triggers mixed feelings for many.




My ratings 7.0/10

My impressions:

A place where customers spend a few hours forgetting their everyday lives. An escape from reality. As the proprietor says, it is a place for relaxation not of healing. Past entanglements plays a role in the present. Then we realise that those pent-up emotions have not disappeared but continued smouldering. A blow up triggers those feelings to the fore and we have to come to terms with the past.

The past, present and future interlinked.


Saturday, July 12, 2014

Where is the Friend's Home? (Khane-ye doust kodjast?)

Iran 1987


Details IMDB
Seen 11 July 2014

Ratings from other sources

IMDB 8.0/10


An 8 year old boy must return his friend's notebook he took by mistake, lest his friend be punished by expulsion from school.






My ratings 8.0/10

My impressions:

Action speak louder than words. The desire to help a friend in need knows no bounds in this story. The journey, effort and hardship encountered while trying to help is most admirable. The adults might never be able to come close to this level of friendship. That strong will to do what is required. The right thing to do despite the obstacles.

It seemed ordinary at the beginning but the end was worth the wait.


Friday, July 11, 2014

Last Life in the Universe

Thailand 2003


Details IMDB
Seen 10 July 2014

Ratings from other sources

IMDB 7.7/10


A suicidal, obsessively compulsive Japanese librarian is forced to lie low in Thailand with a pot-smoking woman coping with the recent loss of her sister.






My ratings 7.5/10

My impressions:

There's a world of difference being alone and being lonely. A man and a woman find a common thread, an understanding of each other. Each has his own world. Not the normal working life but those who remain in the margins. They are driven by another force. Often times seeking solace in another who share the same journey.

Unlikely mates in another universe.


Thursday, July 10, 2014

Three times (Zui hao de shi guang)

Taiwan 2005


Details IMDB
Seen 9 July 2014

Ratings from other sources

IMDB 6.9/10


Three stories set in three times, 1911, 1966 and 2005. Two actors play the two main characters in each story






My ratings 7.0/10

My impressions:

Three stories. Three different periods. A boy and a girl. A man and a woman. Love is the common thread. An unspoken longing for the other. Each couple has to find the strength to bring the relationship to the next level. They have to decide how to make it stronger and last.

Gentle look at love.