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Dramatic, pseudo-documentary reconstruction of the rise of the nationalist movement in Algiers between 1954 and 1957, the crushing defeat it faced at the hands of the French, and its resurgence three years later. Highly influential both in terms of style and content, and originally banned in France for fear of its potential to incite civil unrest, Gillo Pontecorvo's film was one of the benchmarks of 1960s political radicalism.
Song For Marion is a heartwarming comedic drama following shy, grumpy pensioner Arthur as he is reluctantly inspired by his beloved wife Marion to join a highly unconventional local choir.
At odds with his son James, it is left to charismatic choir director Elizabeth to try and persuade Arthur that he can learn to embrace life.
London-set, the story follows Arthur as he embarks on a hilarious, life-affirming journey of musical self-discovery.
Every day, Dammiel listens to the thoughts of mortals who play their lives out on the streets of West Berlin. He finds himself entranced by a trapeze artist whose eloquent expression of her doubts and fears make him yearn for a life where he can feel happiness and love.
The afterlife in Wings Of Desire is a world in monochrome. Only the living can see in full colour and it is their lives, with their moments of sorrow and joy, that Wim Wenders captures so eloquently in this singularly original film.
In German with English subtitles.
Sarah Watt's Look Both Ways opens with one man being hit by a train whilst another is diagnosed with testicular cancer. And you'd be surprised to find that what follows is actually a love story.
Nick, who is trying to live a normal life after being told he has cancer, ends up meeting Meryl, the only witness to the tragic train accident. Instantly drawn to one another the two share their experiences of life and death whilst their family and friends suffer their own personal crises.
Look Both Ways is a commanding debut feature that successfully blends animation and live action whilst bringing a wry humour to a difficult subject matter.
Two young women lead totally separate lives in France and in Poland, one called Veronique and one called Weronika. They have no blood relation and they and their families have never met, but they are physically identical to one another, and strangely aware of each other’s presence.
Despite their different backgrounds, the two share the same likes and foibles, and above all, both of them have a magnificent sublime voice and an extraordinary musical talent.
Unfortunately each girl suffers from the same, barely detectable, cardiac malformation. They also share the same wisdom, inspiring one to unconsciously avoid making the same mistakes in life as the other...
There are wonderful performances by the whole cast, but Irčne Jacob is utterly captivating in the twin roles of Veronique and Weronika, her luminous performance both magical and unsettling.
In Polish and French with English subtitles.
Following 'The Decameron' and 'The Canterbury Tales', Pier Paolo Pasolini completed his Trilogy of Life series with this adaptation of a number of tales from 'The Thousand and One Nights'. Featuring slave markets and royal bedrooms, magic signs and evil demons, special potions and devious betrayals, the stories all concern love, fate and destiny and were filmed on location in Yemen, Ethiopa, Iran and Nepal.
Julio Medem writes and directs this sensual, two-hander drama charting a one night stand that develops into something deeper. Elena Anaya and Natasha Yarovenko star as Alba (who is Spanish) and Natasha (who is Russian), two lesbian women who meet in Rome and decide to spend the night together in a hotel room. However, their night of fun and sex gradually turns into something more meaningful as both women realise as the hours pass that they are falling in love, something neither had expected.
Delia is a young mother stuck in an abusive relationship with her husband of twelve years. One night after he brutally beats her, Delia finally attempts to reclaim some of the power she's completely lost.
Greta is a cookbook editor at a crossroads in life, "rotten with ambition" and semi-struggling with issues of fidelity to her kind but unexciting husband.
And Paula is thrust into crisis after having a near-death experience. Driving to her mother's house in upstate New York, she picks up a hitchhiker, a badly beaten young boy who helps her discover a new sense of spirit.
As each story unfolds, each woman finds herself forced to make a decision... a decision that will change their lives forever.
Three films by acclaimed Austrian director Michael Haneke, known as his 'Glaciation' trilogy. 'The Seventh Continent' (1989) portrays three years in the life of Georg (Dieter Berner), his wife Anna (Birgit Doll) and their daughter Eva (Leni Tanzer), during which time a psychological blindness leads to the family's self-destruction. The film explores familiar Haneke themes: the bourgeouis family unit, professional success and the price of conformism. In 'Benny's Video' (1992), 14-year-old Benny (Arno Frish) immerses himself in the universe of violent movies to fill the void of his middle-class existence. When he invites a girl back to his home, events take a fatal turn as he re-enacts the focus of his video obsession: the shooting of a pig. The final film in the trilogy, '71 Fragments of a Chronology of Chance' (1994), is a mosaic of 71 film tableaux portraying a number of people and events - otherwise unconnected - in the lead-up to a shooting spree undertaken by an Austrian student at Christmas in 2003.
Thoroughly modern in its story, its characters, its urban Tokyo setting, its absurdly funny action sequences, and its understated and ironic self-mockery, TOKYO GODFATHERS is an anime gem from director Satoshi Kon (MILLENNIUM ACTRESS). It is a snowy Christmas in Tokyo and three homeless people--Hana, Gin, and Miyuki--who drift through the streets and alleyways of the city staying warm in the supermarkets and soup kitchens, make up a nontraditional family. Gin is a older man who once had a wife and daughter but lost them and spiraled downward into drinking and drifting. Hana is a flamboyant cross-dressing homosexual who dreams of having a baby. And Miyuki is just a kid--a young girl who ran away from home after a conflict with her father and is still battling familial demons. When the three motley but loving bums find a baby girl abandoned in the garbage on Christmas Eve, they know they've received a true gift. But in their attempts to return the baby to its real mother they go on a wild goose chase all over Tokyo solving mysteries, pursuing criminals, and all the while tackling their own personal problems. According to director Kon, the plot is based on the 1948 Western 3 GODFATHERS directed by John Ford. This immensely entertaining film features a jazzy score of electronic music, excellent illustrations, and superb character development.
This timelessly enchanting story centers around an elegant elderly lady, Mrs Palfrey, who after being recently widowed, moves from Scotland to London to be near to her 26 year old grandson, Desmond. When Desmond fails to return any of her several phone calls, or visit her at the resident hotel she is staying (The Claremont), fate brings her together with a young writer, Ludovic Meyer, after she has an accident outside his basement flat.
Eventually, Ludo ends up helping Mrs. Palfrey by playing a charade - pretending to be her grandson, so that the other off-beat elderly residents of the hotel believe that she hasn't been lying, and that she really does have a grandson.
The two newly found friends discover they have a lot more in common with each other then they do with other people their own age.
Based on one of the most acclaimed novels in recent memory, The Kite Runner is a profoundly emotional tale of friendship, family, devastating mistakes and redeeming love.
In a divided country on the verge of war, two childhood friends, Amir and Hassan, are about to be torn apart forever. It's a glorious afternoon in Kabul and the skies are bursting with the exhilarating joy of a kite-fighting tournament. But in the aftermath of the day's victory, one boy's fearful act of betrayal will mark their lives forever and set in motion an epic quest for redemption.
Now, after 20 years of living in America, Amir returns to a perilous Afghanistan under the Taliban's iron-fisted rule to face the secrets that still haunt him and take one last daring chance to set things right...
In 1971, journalist Raoul Duke (Johnny Depp) and his companion Dr Gonzo (Benicio Del Toro) arrive in Las Vegas, ostensibly so Raoul can cover the Mint 400 off-track race. The duo embark on a massive drugs binge, checking into the Mint hotel before visiting the Bazzoka Circus casino while high on ether. The hedonistic weekend continues the following day, with Raoul and Gonzo meeting various way-out characters along the way. Watch out for cameos by Cameron Diaz, Christina Ricci and Gary Busey in Terry Gilliam's visually stunning adaptation of Hunter S. Thompson's cult novel.
There has never been a face quite like that of Giulietta Masina. Her husband, the legendary Federico Fellini, directs her as Gelsomina in La Strada, the film that launched them both to international stardom. Gelsomina is sold by her mother into the employ of Zampano ( Anthony Quinn), a brutal strongman in a traveling circus. When Zampano encounters an old rival in highwire artist the Fool ( Richard Basehart), his fury is provoked to its breaking point. With La Strada, Fellini left behind the familiar signposts of Italian neorealism for a poetic fable of love and cruelty, evoking brilliant performances and winning the hearts of audiences and critics worldwide.
Veronica and Boris are blissfully in love, until the eruption of World War II tears them apart. Boris is sent to the front lines, and then communication stops. Meanwhile Veronica tries to ward off spiritual numbness while Boris' draft-dodging cousin makes increasingly forceful overtures. Winner of the Palme d'Or at the 1958 Cannes Film Festival, The Cranes Are Flyingis a superbly crafted drama, bolstered by stunning cinematography and impassioned performances.
Academy Award-winning actress Marion Cotillard plays Sandra, a young woman assisted by her husband, who has only one weekend to convince her colleagues to give up their bonuses so that she can keep her job.
Directed by The Dardenne Brothers, who are the most celebrated and decorated filmmaking partners in the world, boasting five Cannes wins and countless other international awards.
Two Days, One Night was in competition for the Palme d'Or at this years Cannes Film Festival.
(2015 Oscar nomination for: Best Lead Actress)
Shinobu hashimoto's riveting script about a bloodthirsty samurai who weighs the power of good against the forces of evil.
Francesco Rosi's neo-realist drama probes the mystery surrounding one of Italy's most beloved criminals. On July 5, 1950, in Castelvetrano, Sicily, the body of Salvatore Giuliano was found, punctured with bullet holes. Painting a thorough portrait of the legendary bandit, Rosi's film also explores the dangerously complex Sicilian world in which politcs and crime go hand-in-hand.
Jacques Audiard directs this multiple award-winning French relationship drama detailing the bond that develops between two people, both profoundly damaged in different ways.
The film starts by telling two parallel stories: one of Ali, a homeless father struggling to care for his five-year-old son, and the other of Stephanie, a woman who loses her legs in an accident while working as a trainer of killer whales.
Both strong, idiosyncratic characters who are used to defining the parameters of their personal relationships, their union forces them out of the emotional safety zones they have each developed for the purposes of self-protection.
A jewish shopkeeper is protected by the nazi who is supposed to keep an eye on him.
Whilst on holiday with her family, seventeen year old Isabelle experiences her first intimate relationship with an attractive young man named Felix. A few days later, and for no apparent reason, Isabelle casts him aside and cuts off all contact with him, behaving as if their encounter never happened.
When she returns home to Paris, Isabelle begins a dangerous new career; she sets up a profile on an escort website and lies about her age in order to make appointments with older, wealthy clients in chic, expensive hotel rooms. On the one hand she is a cool professional, catering to the whims of the various men she encounters; on the other she is maintaining the illusion of being a regular school student for her parents and friends.
Her double life spirals out of control, however, when the unthinkable happens with one of her regular clients and she is forced to deal with the consequences of what she has been doing.
Inspired by Herman Melville's Billy Budd, Claire Denis's Beau Travail is a stunning combination of literature, music, poetry and dance that explores the near-mythical world of the French Foreign Legion.
Denis Lavant stars as Galoup, a sergeant-major whose position and power are threatened when the bravery and heroism of new recruit Sentain attracts the attention of the platoon's commandant.
Enraged, Galoup plots Sentain's downfall, a doomed course of action that leads to his own undoing.
JEAN DE FLORETTE is the first of two parts of the classic Marcel Pagnol story set in southeast France in the mid 1920s. In a small ProvenĂ§al village, where water is scarce and the earth dry, only one piece of property possesses an underground spring to irrigate the soil--and the wily, greedy CĂ©sar (Yves Montand) will do anything to get hold of it. His dreams seem on the verge of coming true when the owner (with a little help from CĂ©sar) dies unexpectedly. But then Jean Cadoret (Gerard Depardieu), an outsider who inherits the farm, arrives with the intention of settling down and cultivating the land with his good-hearted wife, Aimee (played by Depardieu's real wife, Elisabeth Depardieu), and his young daughter, Manon (Ernestine Mazurowna). Jean, a hunchback and sensitive dreamer, glories in his new life while CĂ©sar and his nephew Ugolin (Daniel Auteuil) secretly decide to stop up the spring so his plans will fail. The good-hearted Jean, too naive to imagine that anyone would sabotage him, struggles fruitlessly to make his garden bloom. His continual failure erodes his spirit, setting the stage for a tragedy with consequences for all. Director Claude Berri focuses a well-trained eye on the heart-stopping scenery of the rural ProvenĂ§al landscape in this beautifully filmed tragedy, establishing a farmer's reverence for his land and native soil. Gerard Depardieu delivers an unforgettable performance as the failed dreamer. MANON OF THE SPRING: This sequel to 1986's JEAN DE FLORETTE stars Emmanuelle BĂ©art as Manon (the daughter of JEAN DE FLORETTE's protagonist). Manon has grown up to become a beautiful woman, a shy and resourceful shepherdess who lives in relative seclusion from the townspeople of her ProvenĂ§al village, haunted by the tragic death of her father (played by Gerard Depardieu in part one). An outsider like her father, Manon stays high up in the rugged hills, preferring the company of her sheep to her nearby neighbors CĂ©sar (Yves Montand) and Ugolin (Daniel Auteuil). One fateful day, Manon discovers the real reason why her father's spring ran dry and comes up with a powerful revenge to exact on the men responsible for her father's downfall. Manon's action changes her life forever and uncovers long-hidden family secrets that powerfully affect the local villagers. This charming and poignant fable, based on Marcel Pagnol's classic story, is a richly filmed tale of a small triumph over tragedy. Emmanuelle BĂ©art's beauty radiates throughout the film; she delivers a subtle and captivating performance. Once again, director Claude Berri films with a sensitive eye for the wild beauty of the French countryside that perfectly complements the seductive and earthy beauty of its nubile young star.
The body of a teenage girl is discovered in a field of sunflowers. At the same time a travelling salesman watches the events unfold on television, whilst in the small village of Angosto the discovery of a prehistoric cave brings excitement and the arrival of an experienced caver, his young fiance and his assistant.
The town police chief plans his retirement, while his deputy dreams of escaping the boredom of his marriage and his job...
Through a series of shocking events, their lives become entangled in a web of violence, deceit and murder.
In Spanish with English subtitles.
A hilarious comedy from the director of Life is a Miracle, Emir Kusturica’s Black Cat White Cat is a riotous mix of farce, romance and crime.
Set within a community of gypsies, it tells a story of dodgy deals, family ties, young love and magical occurences.
Zare is a young man in love with the beautiful Ida, but his crooked father, having botched up a black market deal, intends to marry him off to the sister of a powerful gangster - a woman so tiny that her nickname is Ladybird.
Set on the banks of the Danube, this colourful comedy is crammed with spectacle, incident and the music of Emir Kusturica’s famous travelling gypsy band.
In Serbo-Croat with English subtitles.
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