Saturday, September 24, 2005

Be With Me

Went to watch the film as Ezann Lee is acting in it! There are three subplots in the film and they share a common theme: a longing for our loved ones. "Meant To Be" is about a lonely old provision shopkeeper. "Finding Love" is about a middle aged security guard who secretly admires someone working in the same building as he does. "So In Love" is about how the relationship between two teenage girls changes over time.

BWM is inspired by an extra-ordinary woman, Theresa Chan, who is both blind and deaf but still manages to lead an independent life. She is also the glue that joins the three stories together. Her story reminds me of The Land of Silence and Darkness which I saw not long ago.

I like the nice piano soundtrack and the minimal use of dialogue to convey the message! Ezann Lee and the security guard acted very well! Samantha looks quite pretty too! Some minus points are too many close-ups and information overload in the subtitles. Highly recommended!

Internet Movie Database Link
Review with nice movie stills!

Sunday, September 18, 2005

The Three Colors Trilogy

The Three Colors Trilogy is a series of films by Polish director Krzysztof Kieslowski based on the three colors of the French flag: blue, white and red. The colors represent liberty, equality and fraternity respectively. "Blue" is about a young woman re-discovering herself, "White" is about a an ex-husband seeking revenge on his wife and "Red" is about a beautiful model's encounter with a stranger.

The nice DVD boxset that I bought at HMV comes with lots of special features! The cover looks very pretty too! I just started to watch the special features in "Blue" and there are many interviews with the lead actress Juliette Binoche, film critics and the director's friends.

Saw "Blue" a few years ago at Alliance Francaise and I was impressed by the visual effects with the use of colors, the in-depth character development and the small little details that link the three films together. The interviews gave me a better insight into how the different film techniques are used to tell the story more effectively! The DVD is rated M18 though, so you can't watch it if you are under 18.

Blue: Internet Movie Database Link
White: Internet Movie Database Link
Red: Internet Movie Database Link

Saturday, September 10, 2005

The Bow

Saw this at the Korean film festival in Orchard Cineleisure. The story is about a 60 year old man and a 16 year old girl living on a boat together. The old man is waiting for the girl to reach 17 years old to marry her. Meanwhile, outsiders would pay to come on board to fish and stay a few days. The relationship between the girl and the old man changes when a college guy gets on board the ship.

This is a quiet film where the two lead characters hardly speak at all but the expressions on their faces say a lot about what they feel. I think it is interesting how the bow is used both as a weapon and a musical instrument! The same bow is used by the old man to shoot at people who harass the girl, as well as to play music when he is bored. The way the old man helps his customers tell their fortune is also very innovative!

The director Kim Ki Duk has taken ideas from his previous films and put it in this one. The setting is similar to The Isle where people fish on a quite lake, the same actress acted in Samaritan Girl, the quiet couple reminds me of 3 Iron and scenes where people peep through the window reminds me of Bad Guy. I think KKD has toned his film down quite a bit in terms of sex and violence since his early days. TI and BG had a R21 rating, SG was M18, 3I and TB both has an NC16 rating.

The ending is very well done and I like the surprise twist at the end where the arrow fell from the sky and something happened!

Internet Movie Database Link
Korean Film Review

Wednesday, September 07, 2005

March of the Penguins

An interesting French documentary about the Emperor Penguins living in the polar regions. Not sure whether is it North or South pole though. I guess it is the North pole as I didn't see any polar bears around.

What makes this different from regular documentaries is the use of songs and first person narration to tell the story. This allows us to feel closer to the penguins rather than cold facts and figures. Didn't realise that the penguins have to travel so much during their life! They look like elegant businessmen in suits when they walk, cool surf boarders when they slide on their stomachs and great athletes when they swim and leap out of the water! The scenery looks quite pretty too!

Internet Movie Database Link

Saturday, September 03, 2005

Dude, Where's My Car?

Chanced upon this little gem when I was channel surfing. The story is about what happened when two friends, Jesse and Chester, woke up and found that their car was missing. They soon discover that this is not a simple case of car theft and that they are involved in something very much bigger.

Jesse and Chester have many strange encounters as they try to recover their car. I like the interesting people that they meet and the funny gags that play on words! The film reminds me of The Discrete Charm of the Bourgeoisie when they show how sadistic the officer at the car pound is and the several dream sequences by one of the main leads. The way they repeat their dialogue also reminds me of how Kevin Bacon lamented to his psychologist in The Woodsman that their conversation is like a merry-go-round.

The finale is very well done! I am very impressed by how the two friends use both their wits and brawn to handle a super-emergency situation! The large scale special effects is visually stunning too!

Internet Movie Database Link

Friday, September 02, 2005

The Woodsman

The film is about how an ex-offender adjusts back to society despite constant temptation to return back to his evil ways and prejudice from other co-workers.

Kevin Bacon plays the lead character in TW. We see him working quietly by himself in the lumber yard, having therapy with his psychologist and watching the activities at the school across his home. A female co-worker and a police sergeant would sometimes visit him to see how he is doing.

Great acting by Kevin Bacon! His facial expression allows the audience feel his struggles to lead a "normal" life. It reminds me of his performance in "Hollow Man" where he acted as a man who turned invisible in an experiment and was tempted to do things that he would normally not do.

The conversations with the psychologist and the police sergeant are quite interesting too! Also liked the touching scene with Kevin Bacon sitting on the bench in the park talking to someone towards the end of the film!

Afternote: Check out that describes events that aim to help ex-offenders. I saw the ads when I was taking the bus home.

Internet Movie Database Link