"If yesterday blindfolds your eyes, I'll bring you tomorrow."
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Babel, which was directed and co-written by Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu, is an ambitious and compelling retelling of the Bible story of the Tower Of Babel.
There is no angry god in this update, but these characters find themselves unable to articulate the words they need to say the most.
Some of the people here have become towers unto themselves, concealing their anger and depth of sorrow from everyone they love.
The others use their love in an effort to smash these emotional towers.
Babel, in that sense, is as faithful a Biblical retelling as East Of Eden.
Even though many Americans want change on all three fronts, Inarritu shows how these policies affect Americans abroad.
While some laws are a problem, Inarritu had fine story lines without an injection of politics. Besides, in a post 9/11 world, some might wonder how someone could legally transport a rifle from one continent to another.
Every performance in this movie rings true.
In this ensemble were Oscar-nominated performances by Barraza and Kikuchi.
Both ladies deliver some of the film's best work. Barraza is excellent as Amelia, the well-meaning housekeeper who makes a terrible decision.
She should have explained to Santiago why she'd be unable to go. Instead, she made a decision that wracked her with guilt and shame.
Kikuchi plays a very convincing role as Chieko.
Without her mother, she is more vulnerable than she realizes.
She is confused, frightened, and angry, and desperate to let her father know what is wrong.
The movie also marks one of Pitt's best performances as Richard, who, like Chieko, is in mourning over the death of a family member.
He then becomes a man of action when tragedy threatens to strike again.
Bernal, who has worked with Inarritu before, gives a solid performance as the playful, but dangerously irresponsible, Santiago.
One incident can show that the level of separation between individuals and their actions isn't always as huge as it may seem.
This film is more horrifying than self-conscious thrillers, as it will come very close to home to middle class Americans.
The pernicious effects of alcoholism on family, career and life are depicted here.
Jack Lemmon and Lee Remick are remarkable, and their descent from sweet courtship to alcoholic codependency is terrifying.
This preachiness is somewhat amplified by being presented in the person of Jack Klugman, playing a recovering alcoholic.
I have a great deal of respect for Klugman as an actor, but to me, his line deliveries do have a tendency to sound a bit strident and overly-intense to begin with -- even as Oscar Madison in Neil Simon's 'The Odd Couple'! -- so the already-preachy tone of some of the dialogue, placed into his mouth make the film almost seem to stop at points while a public service announcement is played out.
This nitpick however, cannot diminish the overall dramatic power of the film, or its value in helping people to understand something of the tragedy of alcoholism.
The Director's Commentary track by Blake Edwards was really quite disappointing.
Edwards freely admits to not having even watched the film since it was first made, so instead of being able to provide insightful commentary as the film proceeds, he frequently admits to (and apologizes for), long stretches of his own silence as he's swept up in the drama as an audience member.
There is, however, about 8 minutes in, an interesting anecdote about a conversation he had with Jack Lemmon during shooting about their own drinking habits.
After many years, the memory of this movie kept haunting me until I asked around and found out what its name was (I'd long long ago forgotten.) and rented it again. It has some shocking scenes of someone screwing up big time because of booze.
I think a couple of those scenes were so nightmarish and rang so true that they stayed in my mind for many years. Great entertainment, too.
It's been a while now and
SWEENEY TODD-- BEWARE !!!!
Tim Burton must have wanted to make a film adaptation of Sweeny Todd for years, it perfectly fits his dark style, certainly it comes as no surprise that he cast Depp and Carter, I keep looking for Winona Rider.
Depp really makes Todd come alive, he looks bizarre and he's crazed most of the time, but he's playing Sweeny Todd so it works.
It's not pretty or sentimental, but it's pretty much something anyone can enjoy.
The acting is top notch, but what else would you expect from a man who has flawlessly played a drunken pirate, a disturbing owner of a candy shop, a Bostonian coke dealer, and a man with scissors for hands?
Like him or not, Johnny Depp is one of the best out there, and the supporting cast (from Helena Bonham Carter to Alan Rickman to Ed Sanders to pretty much everyone else) gives nearly as good a performance as the man himself.
But there is far more to enjoy in this film than just the acting.
Just under two hours, this movie delivers its story without becoming overlong (as more and more films tend to be).
There is plenty CGI--much of the sets seem to be computer graphics--and superbly absurd special effects, such as the purposely comically exaggerate blood spurting from the victims necks.
Everything in this movie seems to work together.
It's not for everyone, because there is a lot of violence and the musical genre doesn't click with every person, but for those who can handle blood spurts and catchy tunes, I'd say buy "Sweeney Todd" as quickly as possible.
Because really, how can you go wrong with Tim Burton?
Sweeney Todd---A Bloody-Fine Movie!!!!!
Benjamin Barker was a successful barber, with a beautiful wife, and a daughter he adored.
The evil Judge Turpin had his eye aimed on Barkers wife and had Barker sent away to an Australian prison for life…even though he committed no crime.
The Judge tried to steal away Mrs. Barker, but to no avail, Mrs. Barker eventually poisoned herself to rid herself of the judge.
Judge Turpin finding himself without Mrs. Barker, took her daughter Johanna and raised her as his own. Benjamin Barker escapes Australia after 14 years of imprisonment and changes his name...to Sweeney Todd.
The show opens in London, which Sweeney describes as "…a hole in the world like a great black pit, and the vermin of the world inhabit it, and its morals aren't worth spit, and it goes by the name of London..."
Sweeney has many revelations about the cruelty and evil in mankind throughout the show.
There are three main plot themes in the play.
There is the relationship between Mrs.
Lovett (Lansbury) and Sweeney, Anthony and Johanna, and Sweeney vs. the world. Benjamin Barkers old barber shop was above Mrs. Lovett's meat pie shop.
When Barker comes back as Sweeney, Mrs. Lovett almost immediately recognizes and gives him back his silver plated razors; she also tells him the fate of his wife.
Sweeney asks if he can rent the shop above her shop and she eagerly agrees.
This is the start of a rather twisted relationship.
There are various styles of songs in this show.
There is a song for a man that is in an alto range which is very uncommon.
There is also a wonderful love song called "Johanna".
But the show is mainly songs with creepy minor chords and dark overtones.
All the acting was superb, some of the best Ive ever seen, with the exception of the actress who played Johanna.
Everyone else's roles easily cover up her poor performance.
This movie contains very graphic violence and some strong sexual themes.
There is hardly any profanity.
Not good for kids under about age fifteen.*****
The Allure of the Exotic.....
Edward cannot complete the simplest of tasks.
His strange hands interfere with the most mundane of daily tasks.
There's an incident with a waterbed and another with a single pea to highlight this idea.
These things make poor Edward a freak…something to be stared and laughed at.
But, within his heart lies the soul of an artist. He can sculpt the most beautiful and amazing things out of hedges, dogs, and women’s hair.
This quality of course makes him a mini-hero, but just one slip sends him back into the category of freak.
Johnny Depp does an absolutely amazing job at portraying the stoic Edward.
He seems small, wounded, and full of loneliness within his shell. Yet at the same time he wants nothing more than to love and be loved in return.
With pasty white skin, stiff black hair, scars, and the prominent scissors for hands, Edward is strange to look at.
I enjoyed seeing Vincent Price (albeit briefly) as Edward's father.
Wiest was hilarious in her pivotal role.
Put simply, 'Edward Scissorhands' is a beautiful film, by a confident director at the height of his powers, and featuring a faultless cast.
I gape with astonishment when this film fails to make lists of the best ever movies because for me, this film redefines the potential of cinema.
I'm not the crying sort where films are concerned, but I have to quietly admit that, as the snowflakes gently tumble and everything seems to be falling into place for a happy ending... well, if I'm in a soppy mood, you might catch a quiet sniffle.
She quizzes him on why he agreed to help break into her boyfriend's house (long story). He looks calmly back and whispers, 'Because you asked me to.'
Once again, Jim appears.
Edward's despair at this point becomes apparent, which is ironic given that Ryder is busy rejecting the arrogant git.
If you've not yet seen this film, I urge you to discover it as soon as possible.
This is a contribution to the "This Movie Really Made Me Cry Write Off."
【Great for the fans!!!】
Amazing, this band is just too good!!!
X japan is the best metal band from asia and Dahlia is their last album before they broke up.
To describe X-Japan I would need at least 100000∞ million words...!!
But as a resume, "THEY ARE THE BEST!!"****** with the best VISUAL ROCK GROUP EVER: "X-JAPAN".!!!!
Anyone who knows anything about Japanese rock music knows that X Japan is the definitive band of the genre.
Composed of the infamous Yoshiki on drums and piano; Toshi on vocals; hide (now deceased) and Pata on guitar; and Taiji (later, Heath) on bass, X Japan took a late-80's Japan by storm and all but singularly commanded the music industry for nearly ten years before finally disbanding in 1997.
Classic, intricate melodies performed flawlessly by amazing musicians encompassed powerful, moving ballads that just as suddenly twisted into frenetic speed metal of unequaled structure and form.**
NO ROCK GROUP IN JAPAN TODAY can say that they were not somehow influenced by X Japan's vision, which is why it is such a remarkable thing that it has taken this long for any collection of X Japan's music to be reproduced in this country.
Fullfilled with excellent songs, delightful lyrics, unique guitar playings......and the BEST WAY OF PLAYING ROCK EVER.
The style is quite different from their previous albums though.
Now the best part about this dvd is the cd that follows.
It includes all the tracks on the dvd, plus 4 more.
Thats what makes this such a great buy.
You get a dvd with different clips (some live, and some musicvideos) + you get a cd.
A perfect way for a fan to start getting his X-Japan collection together.
And its really dead cheap as well, compared to the other X-Japan stuff.
If you want to start listening to X-Japan, then get this.
No matter what people say about Malice Mizer, Moi Dix Mois, and similiar bands. X-Japan was the first and the best, and no one can change that.
Recommended songs are: Dahlia, Tears, Forever love...
【What a Great Album...】
First let me tell you that I met Julia at the stage door of livehouse in Shinjyuku, and she is one of the nicest people I have ever met.
You can tell that she wants to be there and talk with her fans, even though she was very sick that night.
She takes out the time to talk and write to her fans.
It's nice to see that Rakuten-Books finally decided to stock this cd.
I gotta say, this is one of the top releases as far as emo rock goes.!!!!
The closing track, which builds up from the sound of a rachet driver to a chaotic and cathartic finale in which everything just comes crashing down.
I've seen Julia on stage and heard the real power of her voice.
The CD reveals much more of her range.
A really excellent singer and the mix of material is very entertaining.*****
Let's get this average rating up!!
Her voice is very clear and has a warmness to it.
You will find her cd to be at the top of your playlists.
Buy her CD now, you will NOT regret it!!
You'll like it, trust me.★★★★★
【Finely crafted meditation on the nature of fascism and evil..】
WARNING: THE FILM REVIEWED HERE IS BOTH GRAPHICALLY VIOLENT AND EXPLICITLY PORNOGRAPHIC.
THIS REVIEW CONTAINS EXPLICIT LANGUAGE NECESSARY TO MEANINGFUL DISCUSSION OF THE CONTENT AND ISSUES OF THE FILM.
Salo is a film that many viewers understandably find repulsive.
Unfortunately, that sense of disgust is precisely what causes the vast majority of us to divert our gaze from the instances of sadistic behavior occurring in real life, every day, in many different places around the world, and that, in turn, allows its continuation.
It follows the source material reliably except for the Fascist association at the beginning and the cutesy artistic touch at the very end.
A pianist bangs out snappy dancehall tunes and dirges on the ballroom piano.
Other times, we hear the sound of big bands on the phonograph.
It's hard to focus on the images, given the gruesome content, but when I noticed, I was struck by the contrast between the beauty of the images and the horror of the activities.
Paolo Bonacelli is outstanding as The Duke.
His other work includes notably Midnight Express (1978), Caligula (1979), and Night on Earth (1992).
Aldo Valletti was very creepy as The President.
I thought the performance by Helene Surgere as Signora Vaccari the highlight of the film.****
In the end, Salo is a powerful, visceral, disturbing film that looks into the darkest corners of the human psyche and never flinches from what it uncovers.
Yes, its exploitative, but its also an artistic film made by a filmmaker who wanted to confront the complacency of both mainstream cinema as well as humankind.
Few can look back on Sade's novel or Pasolini's film with fond memories, but even fewer would admit to not being affected by their savage vision.
It is for this reason that anyone who?s serious about film should see Salo.
I give it nothing less than my highest recommendation.