What about those 90s movies?

Disco Volante
08-01-2003, 01:28 PM
JONIK seems to gave up his ongoing thread on 90s "masterpieces from beginning to end", and I didn't get to post my choices... This kind of things is crappy, but here's anyway some films I think are sitting on top of the decade :

Chef-d'oeuvres of the decade :

Yume - Akira Kurosawa - 1990
Europa - Lars Von Trier - 1991
Topâzu - Ryu Murakami - 1992
Calendar - Atom Egoyan - 1993
Naked - Mike Leigh - 1993
Libera Me - Alain Cavalier - 1993
Smoking/No Smoking - Alain Resnais - 1993
Trois couleurs : bleu, blanc, rouge - Krzysztof Kieslowski - 1993/94/94
Under the Olive Trees - Abbas Kiarostami - 1994
Vive l'amour - Tsai Ming Liang - 1994
Una Pura Formalita - Giuseppe Tornatore - 1994
To Vlemma tou Odyssea - Theo Angelopoulos - 1995
Underground - Emir Kusturica - 1995
Crash - David Cronenberg - 1996
The Pillow Book - Peter Greenaway - 1996
Gummo - Harmony Korine - 1997
Funny Games - Micheal Haneke - 1997
Happy Together - Wong Kar-Wai - 1997
Idioterne - Lars Von Trier - 1998
New Rose Hotel - Abel Ferrara - 1998
Hai shang hua (Flowers of Shanghai) - Hou Hsiao-hsien - 1998
Le temps retrouvé - Raoul Ruiz - 1999
Romance - Catherine Breillat - 1999
Eyes Wide Shut - Stanley Kubrick - 1999
Julien Donkey-Boy - Harmony Korine - 1999
Mein liebster Feind - Klaus Kinski - Werner Herzog - 1999

Other (very) interesting flicks from the decade :

Riff-Raff - Ken Loach - 1990
Nuit d'été en ville - Michel Deville - 1990
Zendegi edame darad - Abbas Kiarostami - 1991
Da hong deng long gao gao gua (Raise the Red Lantern) - Yimou Zhang - 1991
Barton Fink - Coen and Coen - 1991
La double vie de Véronique - Krzysztof Kieslowski - 1991
Delicatessen - Caro and Jeunet - 1991
What's Eating Gilbert Grape - Lasse Hallstrom - 1993
Ba wang bie ji (Farewell my Concubine) - Chen Kaige - 1993
Kika - Pedro Almodovar - 1993
Dangerous Game - Abbel Ferrara - 1993
Pulp Fiction - Quentin Tarantino - 1994
Dung che sai duk (Ashes of Time) - Wong Kar-Wai - 1994
Chungking Express - Wong Kar-Wai - 1994
Le vent du Wyoming - André Forcier - 1994
Utomlyonnye solntsem - Nikita Mikhalkov - 1994
Hoop Dreams - Steve James - 1994
Dead Man - Jim Jarmusch - 1995
Haonan haonu - Hou Hsiao-hsien - 1995
Lovers - Jean-Marc Barr - 1999
La cité des enfants perdus - Caro and Jeunet - 1995
Lumière et compagnie - collective work - 1995
Trois vies et une seule mort - Raoul Ruiz - 1996
Nanguo zaijan, nanguo - Hou Hsiao-hsien - 1996
Lilies - John Greyson - 1996
Comment je me suis disputé... (ma vie sexuelle) - Arnaud Desplechin - 1996
Breaking the Waves - Lars Von Trier - 1996
Irma Vep - Olivier Assayas - 1996
Lost Highway - David Lynch - 1997
The Sweet Hereafter - Atom Egoyan - 1997
Unagi - Shohei Imamura - 1997
The River - Tsai Ming-Liang - 1997
The Hole - Tsai Ming-Liang - 1998
La vie rêvée des anges - Erick Zonca - 1998
Dieu seul me voit - Bruno Podalydès - 1998
Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas - Terry Gilliam - 1998
Tango - Carlos Saura - 1998
Fin août, début septembre - Olivier Assayas - 1998
Buffalo 66 - Vincent Gallo - 1998
Festen - Thomas Vinterberg - 1998
Being John Malkovich - Spike Jonze - 1999
Fight Club - David Fincher - 1999
Todo sobre mi madre - Pedro Almodovar - 1999
Rien sur Robert - Pascal Bonitzer - 1999
Bad ma ra khahad bord - Abbas Kiarostami - 1999

Pending*:

Metropolitan - Whit Stillman - 1990
The Fisher King - Terry Gilliam - 1991
Hsimeng jensheng - Hou Hsiao-hsien - 1993
Lan feng zheng - Zhuangzhuang Tian - 1993
Vanya on 42nd Street - Louis Malle - 1994
Huozhe (To Live) - collective work - 1994
Crumb - Terry Zwigoff - 1994
Nadie hablará de nosotras cuando hayamos muerto - Agustín Díaz Yanes - 1995
Kauas pilvet karkaavat (Drifting Clouds) - Aki Kaurismäki - 1996
Mary Jane's Not a Virgin Anymore - Sarah Jacobson - 1997
Juha - Aki Kaurismäki - 1999
The Straight Story - David Lynch - 1999

List far from complete (and growing) and I'll invite any film buff (Mr.T - Chimera - kjk - etc.) to suggest other titles I could add to it (I'll be the judge, so no, Memento won't be add).


(by the way - where is dempsey_k??)

*disclaimer : I am not responsible for the quality of the films that are pending... :p

Haute Couture
08-01-2003, 01:30 PM
Wasn't Pillow Book a Japanese movie or something? I thought it was more recent than that, too...

Disco Volante
08-01-2003, 01:31 PM
Wasn't Pillow Book a Japanese movie or something? I thought it was more recent than that, too...

It's british, but filmed in Japan and Hong Kong

edit : now that I checked - it was in fact a co-production England/France/Netherlands

Vincent Vega
08-01-2003, 01:38 PM
GoodFellas
Pulp Fiction
Reservoir Dogs
Philadelphia

Disco Volante
08-01-2003, 01:50 PM
GoodFellas
Pulp Fiction
Reservoir Dogs
Philadelphia

of those I'll only consider adding Pulp Fiction (even tho I personnally prefer Reservoir Dogs), unless you can make a case for the others (pretty standard films in my POV). ;)

Vincent Vega
08-01-2003, 02:09 PM
GoodFellas - The story, the acting, the dialouge.

Reservoir Dogs - The story was unoriginal but the excellent acting and incredible dialouge made this a great movie. The acting is very believeable namely Michael Madsen who WAS Mr. Blonde and Steve Buscemi who was excellent as Mr. Pink.

Philadelphia - BRILLIANT performence by Tom Hanks. This is a very very powerful film. The only downside is it is very slow.

klingsor
08-01-2003, 02:41 PM
What is this? Target practice for PornoHolocaust?

I ain't no sitting duck.

I'll add "Dead Man" because I know you like it.

Predatore
08-01-2003, 02:45 PM
how about Fargo? or the Usual Suspects?
You don't like them at all?

Disco Volante
08-01-2003, 03:06 PM
What is this? Target practice for PornoHolocaust?

I ain't no sitting duck.

I'll add "Dead Man" because I know you like it.

:lol:

No, no, I won't charge into anyone! Just want some serious propositions... I'm sure you can propose more than one tiny little film ;)

how about Fargo? or the Usual Suspects?
You don't like them at all?

Not that I don't like them, they are good genre films, but I'm looking for much more here. Not just good acting/good "story"/etc. I want brilliant works.

Right now I've got only two propositions to consider : Dead Man and Pulp Fiction, none that really cuts it clear IMO. I thought this thing would be more popular!

Rabid Ranger
08-01-2003, 03:17 PM
Wasn't Pillow Book the film about the Japanese body art? That film was atrocious! Completely disjointed, and pretty spastically filmed. Maybe my tastes aren't "highbrow" enough to appreciate that dreck.


Another "winner" on that list is Gummo. Isn't that the Jerry Springeresque "documentary"? The midget killed me.....

Predatore
08-01-2003, 03:21 PM
okay I got two more suggestions for you to consider

What's Eating Gilbert Grape (Lasse's second best after "My Life as a dog", DiCaprio's performance was just brilliant)

Schindler's List (perhaps one can question the acting at times, but it is touching and stays on your mind after watching it)

edit: wow, just saw that you missed an excellent movie: Mononoke-hime aka Princess Mononoke, how about that one?

Disco Volante
08-01-2003, 03:22 PM
Wasn't Pillow Book the film about the Japanese body art? That film was atrocious! Completely disjointed, and pretty spastically filmed. Maybe my tastes aren't "highbrow" enough to appreciate that dreck.


Another "winner" on that list is Gummo. Isn't that the Jerry Springeresque "documentary"? The midget killed me.....

Hmmm, absolutely nothing to do with a documentary, which says a lot on your appreciation of it, but you have both films right.

JONIK
08-01-2003, 03:26 PM
- LA Confidential
- American History X
- The Shawshank Redemption
- Road to Perdition
- Momento
- Braveheart
- Lord of the Rings
- Dark City
- O' Brother Where Art Though?
- The Thin Red Line

klingsor
08-01-2003, 03:27 PM
:lol:

No, no, I won't charge into anyone! Just want some serious propositions... I'm sure you can propose more than one tiny little film ;)



Not that I don't like them, they are good genre films, but I'm looking for much more here. Not just good acting/good "story"/etc. I want brilliant works.

Right now I've got only two propositions to consider : Dead Man and Pulp Fiction, none that really cuts it clear IMO. I thought this thing would be more popular!

Okay, flame away. I won't defend them. I just enjoyed them:

Basquiat (1996)
Address:http://us.imdb.com/Title?0115632


Lone Star (1996)
Address:http://us.imdb.com/Title?0116905

Disco Volante
08-01-2003, 03:28 PM
okay I got two more suggestions for you to consider

What's Eating Gilbert Grape (Lasse's second best after "My Life as a dog", DiCaprio's performance was just brilliant)

Schindler's List (perhaps one can question the acting at times, but it is touching and stays on your mind after watching it)

edit: wow, just saw that you missed an excellent movie: Mononoke-hime aka Princess Mononoke, how about that one?

I agree with you on Gilbert Grape, I wouldn't consider it on the level of the movies I mentioned, but it is a great film. As far as Lasse's second best, well I don't want to put your words in doubt, but you do realize that for saying such a thing you must have seen every film he made? Anyway, I too thought My Life as a Dog was slightly better, I think Gilbert is kind of a thematic sequel...

Schindler's plain crap to me.

Princess Mononoke I haven't seen, but I'd like to restrain to "photographic" films.

Rabid Ranger
08-01-2003, 03:28 PM
Hmmm, absolutely nothing to do with a documentary, which says a lot on your appreciation of it, but you have both films right.



I used the word documentary because that's what the film reminded me of: a day in the life of a bunch of people I wouldn't want to be less than a million miles from, and who represent the absolute worst of the human experience.

Frolov 6'3
08-01-2003, 03:30 PM
Europa - Lars Von Trier - 1991
Topâzu - Ryu Murakami - 1992
Calendar - Atom Egoyan - 1993
Naked - Mike Leigh - 1993
Libera Me - Alain Cavalier - 1993
Smoking/No Smoking - Alain Resnais - 1993
Trois couleurs : bleu, blanc, rouge - Krzysztof Kieslowski - 1993/94/94
Under the Olive Trees - Abbas Kiarostami - 1994
Vive l'amour - Tsai Ming Liang - 1994
Una Pura Formalita - Giuseppe Tornatore - 1994
To Vlemma tou Odyssea - Theo Angelopoulos - 1995
Underground - Emir Kusturica - 1995
Crash - David Cronenberg - 1996
The Pillow Book - Peter Greenaway - 1996
Gummo - Harmony Korine - 1997
Funny Games - Micheal Haneke - 1997
Happy Together - Wong Kar-Wai - 1997
Idioterne - Lars Von Trier - 1998
New Rose Hotel - Abel Ferrara - 1998
Le temps retrouvé - Raoul Ruiz - 1999
Romance - Catherine Breillat - 1999
Julien Donkey-Boy - Harmony Korine - 1999


I know Lars von Trier, but for the rest ???
Are this cult movies ?

Disco Volante
08-01-2003, 03:35 PM
Okay, flame away. I won't defend them. I just enjoyed them:

Basquiat (1996)
Address:http://us.imdb.com/Title?0115632


Lone Star (1996)
Address:http://us.imdb.com/Title?0116905

I've seen neither!! Basquiat, I'll admit with shame, I could have seen but didn't on the doubtful basis that I don't really like the artist... Lone Star, hmmm, never really heard of it... I'm a rare fan of Teague's Alligator so maybe I'll give it a try someday. Anyway, interesting propositions!

Rabid Ranger
08-01-2003, 03:38 PM
Not a groundbreaking film by any stretch, but I loved The Spanish Prisoner (1997). I love Mamet's work.

Disco Volante
08-01-2003, 03:40 PM
I know Lars von Trier, but for the rest ???
Are this cult movies ?

Those are really well-known films, maybe Topâzu and Libera Me are a little obscure, but still easy to find. In fact, Von Trier is far from being the most known figure on that list...

- LA Confidential
- American History X
- The Shawshank Redemption
- Road to Perdition
- Momento
- Braveheart
- Lord of the Rings
- Dark City
- O' Brother Where Art Though?
- The Thin Red Line

Ok I think it's time you get away from mainstream american junk. By the way, Road to Perdition (2002), O Brother (2000), Lotr (2001) don't apply... Well now that I check, even Memento don't apply.

Disco Volante
08-01-2003, 03:41 PM
Not a groundbreaking film by any stretch, but I loved The Spanish Prisoner (1997). I love Mamet's work.

Well, I'm looking for groundbreaking films here ;)

JONIK
08-01-2003, 03:43 PM
Ok I think it's time you get away from mainstream american junk

Trust me pal, there is no "American Junk" in me.

JONIK
08-01-2003, 03:45 PM
Here is some other good movies, and they don't have anything to do with "American Junk".

Schindlers List
Usual Suspects
Fight Club
Fargo

klingsor
08-01-2003, 04:20 PM
Holy crap, I was gonna post this:

Pura formalità, Una (1994)
Address:http://us.imdb.com/Title?0110917

Then I saw it was on your list. Ah well, I think I'll exit with my dignity intact.

Triple Klutz
08-01-2003, 07:00 PM
C'mon, Porno, you can't actually believe that unwatchable tripe like Gummo and Julien The Donkey Boy are great films. It's the emperor's clothes all over again.

Disco Volante
08-01-2003, 07:01 PM
Holy crap, I was gonna post this:

Pura formalità, Una (1994)
Address:http://us.imdb.com/Title?0110917

Then I saw it was on your list. Ah well, I think I'll exit with my dignity intact.

Yeah what a great film, probably the best "huis-clos" I've ever seen (even tho it's not a totally rigid one).

Disco Volante
08-01-2003, 07:12 PM
C'mon, Porno, you can't actually believe that unwatchable tripe like Gummo and Julien The Dockey Boy are great films. It's the emperor's clothes all over again.

Well, Triple my dear compatriote, I'll only answer you by quoting Bernardo Bertolucci, who said, after sadly noticing that cinema hadn't evolve much in the last 25 years, that if there was to be an aesthetic revolution, it would pass thru Harmony Korine.

As far as I'm concern, Korine is right now, by far the most interesting american director (and please note that he's only 29) and not far from genius. His narrative structures, his cinematographic language and his scripts (not including Kids which I found a little weak, but certainly including Ken Park) are so far ahead from anything else done in the States (and on the front line of everything else done in the world) that he really feels like an alien.

It's absolutely normal that, if you're used to normal structures and mise en scène, you don't enjoy his films right away. But give the guy a chance (and see other authors' work)... (also, take a look at his writings).

Triple Klutz
08-01-2003, 07:22 PM
Well, Triple my dear compatriote, I'll only answer you by quoting Bernardo Bertolucci, who said, after sadly noticing that cinema hadn't evolve much in the last 25 years, that if there was to be an aesthetic revolution, it would pass thru Harmony Korine.

As far as I'm concern, Korine is right now, by far the most interesting american director (and please note that he's only 29) and not far from genius. His narrative structures, his cinematographic language and his scripts (not including Kids which I found a little weak, but certainly including Ken Park) are so far ahead from anything else done in the States (and on the front line of everything else done in the world) that he really feels like an alien.

It's absolutely normal that, if you're used to normal structures and mise en scène, you don't enjoy his films right away. But give the guy a chance (and see other authors' work)... (also, take a look at his writings).

I'll say one thing: they were like nothing I've ever seen before, but I'm pretty sure I don't want to see 'em again. If that's the work of a genius, then thankfully I'm a retard.

thesiver
08-01-2003, 07:28 PM
Fight Club is my favourite movie of the 90s.

Disco Volante
08-01-2003, 07:30 PM
I'll say one thing: they were like nothing I've ever seen before, but I'm pretty sure I don't want to see 'em again. If that's the work of a genius, then thankfully I'm a retard.

Like nothing you've ever seen before. That's always a good sign. I wouldn't say retard (dear lord, you know I'm a polite boy), but you've been (like most) over-fed with aristotelician structure : so much than when you come across something totally different, it doesn't feel like a story, or like a movie. Absolutely normal, you'll need strong medication to get out of that state. ;)

JONIK
08-01-2003, 07:45 PM
Fight Club is my favourite movie of the 90s.

Don't worry, Porno will surly reject it as "American Junk"

Disco Volante
08-01-2003, 07:53 PM
Don't worry, Porno will surly reject it as "American Junk"

No, no, Fight Club is a nice little accessible entertaining film. It nicely recycles postmodern processes such as distanciation (the cigarette burn stuff) or decharacterisation (the academy awards thanx), the only bug is it employs these tricks without the reflexivity it usually entices. Still, nicely written (even tho the duality-punch is visible from a mile away) and beautifully shot. It's narrativity is even somewhat complex, especially for a commercial film.

It could actually be considered in the sub-list with Pulp Fiction, What's Eating Gilbert Grape and Dead Man. But these films lack just a little something IMO...

Sandman13
08-01-2003, 08:46 PM
Dazed And Confused- the funniest, and most true to life, teen film ever. Heck the funniest film ever, period.

Kristofer
08-01-2003, 08:57 PM
I like some of the movies already named in this thread but besides that I would add The City of Lost Children and Being John Malkovich. Groundbreaking? probably not.

Disco Volante
08-01-2003, 09:16 PM
Dazed And Confused- the funniest, and most true to life, teen film ever. Heck the funniest film ever, period.

I love Linklater, but Dazed And Confused, tho interesting, is still a teen film and not much more IMO.

I like some of the movies already named in this thread but besides that I would add The City of Lost Children and Being John Malkovich. Groundbreaking? probably not.

Nice propositions! I'll change City of Lost Children into Delicatessen (same director, better film IMO) and we have a winner here (edit : changed my mind and put it in grade-B as well...)

edit : I've added also Lost Highway and Trois vies et une seule mort in a grade-B category :)

Kristofer
08-01-2003, 09:41 PM
Nice propositions! I'll change City of Lost Children into Delicatessen (same director, better film IMO) and we have a winner here (edit : changed my mind and put it in grade-B as well...)


Haven't been able to find Delicatessen on tape around here yet(only over the internet) but I will have to check and see if I can rent it, maybe tomorrow.

Belgian Fan
08-02-2003, 12:44 AM
(by the way - where is dempsey_k??)

Last I heard he was staying with an uncle, but he and his family are in the process of moving from Alaska to California, so it's possible that he doesn't have an internet acces yet...

Puck
08-02-2003, 03:20 AM
Porno has a great list of non-American flicks on this thread. Some I have seen, many I've heard about or forgotten about that I promised myself I would see but didn't. I'm glad I saw this thread, I've copied the list of flicks and I will try to hunt some of these down at various video shops, so i can make up my own mind.

I also like how he did not try to rate them as No.1, 2, 3 etc...how does one assume to be able to compare movies that are so different....good move.

I disagree with the assertion about 'Ok I think it's time you get away from mainstream american junk.' I'm not American and I love American movies. I suppose one could scold people to broaden their horizons and watch flicks from around the world, not just the US commercial fare. But I still love good American movies, European movies, Asian, Australian, Latin American....Taking a shot at the big kid on the block is always too easy.

I suspect from the avatar, that Porno is a Quebecois. Quebec is the one jurisdiction in North America that probably looks to Europe the most for cultural ideas. I think the Quebecois probably don't want to get absorbed in the anglo-saxon North American mainstream, hence they make more of an effort to look outwards from the new-continent. So they probably get to see more non-American flicks at the cinema halls and theatres. Unfortunately, most of the rest of us don't get this exposure to non-commercial hits. So I don't really think it is fair to dump on some if their social environment doesn't expose them to all that is offered in this world.

I didn't see most of the non-commercial celluloid products on this thread so I will avoid posting a 'best' list because I can see I'm not qualified. But here are some favorites and least-favoured.

A nice little movie that was not a big box office success but grew on audiences later in the 90s when it came out on VHS was The Shawshank Redemption. I don't know if the Director planned everything, but it all seems to fall in place at the end.

And I know the snobs will disagree with me about this one. For an unpretentious little comedy that actually made me laugh out loud, I give Home Alone by Chris Columbus a special mention. This one will never win any major awards, it's just a personal favorite because it made me laugh when I was down and not at home for Christmas. It's like a real life Road Runner vs Wiley E. Coyote. Home Alone 2 is also a riot.

I was stunned at the Fisher King. It resembles more something that a European Director would produce and it surprised me for a commercial Hollywood movie. I truly enjoyed this. I also enjoyed Forrest Gump and Edward Scissorhands.

My brother's favorite was Silence of the Lambs. I did not go see it at the theatres but when it came out on VHS, I had to watch it in parts. I had to turn it off at times and go for a walk. Scenes like the young girl in the pit really bothered me. I suppose this is one of the great emotional movies of the 90s, but it's not mine. I'm also not a fan of Thelma and Louise. To some, this is the female Easy Rider of the 90s. I didn't care for it but I thought the ending was appropriate. And I didn't like Fargo for some reason; I really wanted to like it. It seems to be on many people's favorite list. I was indifferent, almost bored.

Schindler's List I enjoyed. It might be over-rated as the definitive Holocaust movie. But it will go down in history as one of the good films depicting the horrors of WWII. Saving Private Ryan also gets an honourable mention.

I also liked Luc Besson's Joan of Arc, The Messenger, which just sneaks in at 1999. And I have to throw in Good Will Hunting.

For the so-called 'ballsy' flicks, I will add
Metropolitan
Usual Suspects
Dark City
Pulp Fiction
The Big Lebowski
Three Colors: Blue, White, Red OR the entire Three colours trilogy
Fallen Angels (Wong Kar-Wai) (or Chungking Express)
Leon - the professional (Luc Besson)
Vanya on 42nd Street (Louis Malle)

I might remember something later, so due to the onset of Alzheimer's at my young age, I claim the right to add to this list later :p

KungFuPenguin
08-02-2003, 04:20 AM
Lola Rennt? Not groundbreaking in any way, but I thought it felt original.

Hana-bi? Or some other Takeshi Kitano flick? Again, nothing groundbreaking, but an interesting and kind of different movie (vis-a-vis hollywood movies).

Along the same lines, what about Kiyoshi Kurosawa? I've only seen Charisma but I thought it was quite an odd movie.

Also, for the Pulp Fiction/Reservoir Dogs crowd, you definitely need to check out the Danish "I Kine Spiser De Hunde". Hilarious. OTOH, I hated "Idioterne". "Festen" is the best Dogma movie I've seen so far.

Further, I personally feel Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas should be on any best-of-the-90s list, but it's hardly a groundbreaking movie in the original sense.

Disco Volante
08-02-2003, 08:44 AM
Porno has a great list of non-American flicks on this thread. Some I have seen, many I've heard about or forgotten about that I promised myself I would see but didn't. I'm glad I saw this thread, I've copied the list of flicks and I will try to hunt some of these down at various video shops, so i can make up my own mind.

I also like how he did not try to rate them as No.1, 2, 3 etc...how does one assume to be able to compare movies that are so different....good move.

Firstly, thank you for taking the time to post your views. I'm very happy if this silly list can get people to actually see these films!

I too hate "tops" of any kind. To make one is to pretend having seen all important films of a said time frame and to pretend to be able to evaluate them on their fondamental value. Even making a top on something very precise is vain.

I disagree with the assertion about 'Ok I think it's time you get away from mainstream american junk.' I'm not American and I love American movies. I suppose one could scold people to broaden their horizons and watch flicks from around the world, not just the US commercial fare. But I still love good American movies, European movies, Asian, Australian, Latin American....Taking a shot at the big kid on the block is always too easy.

Oh, but my comment was only pointing out the fact that the films JONIK proposed as the "crème" of the 90s were all americans. I see myself a lot of american films, and some of my favorite directors are american (ok, not mainstream). I didn't meant that people should stop seeing commercial films, only that they should too see more personnal works.

I suspect from the avatar, that Porno is a Quebecois. Quebec is the one jurisdiction in North America that probably looks to Europe the most for cultural ideas. I think the Quebecois probably don't want to get absorbed in the anglo-saxon North American mainstream, hence they make more of an effort to look outwards from the new-continent. So they probably get to see more non-American flicks at the cinema halls and theatres. Unfortunately, most of the rest of us don't get this exposure to non-commercial hits. So I don't really think it is fair to dump on some if their social environment doesn't expose them to all that is offered in this world.

Damn. I only took as an avatar the nicest goalie I found, I never saw him play! But yes, you are right anyway, I am Quebecois. But wrong on everything else!... The Quebecois not wanting to be absorb making more of an effort to look away from the States??? A dream come true. But sadly not in this reality. Here, more than 90% of the screens in the province are occupied by american films. The films we make ourselves, (except for 2-3 commercial ***** per year) have trouble finding screens outside Montreal, and mostly don't. From reading I thought the problem was practically worldwide, but from talking to Belgian Fan, and from a trip to France this year, I see the deep **** we're in here. In fact it's so bad that our cinematographic industry can't get to economical autonomy and the province and the country must be in part (half of the budget sometimes) producers.

All in all, you may be right, a part of me hates commercial american films because it suffocates my culture. But hey, I can be objective too ;) - and, sadly, most of these films are formally worthless. Based on over-washed recipes and (re)made only to make some cash.

I didn't see most of the non-commercial celluloid products on this thread so I will avoid posting a 'best' list because I can see I'm not qualified. But here are some favorites and least-favoured.

A nice little movie that was not a big box office success but grew on audiences later in the 90s when it came out on VHS was The Shawshank Redemption. I don't know if the Director planned everything, but it all seems to fall in place at the end.

And I know the snobs will disagree with me about this one. For an unpretentious little comedy that actually made me laugh out loud, I give Home Alone by Chris Columbus a special mention. This one will never win any major awards, it's just a personal favorite because it made me laugh when I was down and not at home for Christmas. It's like a real life Road Runner vs Wiley E. Coyote. Home Alone 2 is also a riot.

I was stunned at the Fisher King. It resembles more something that a European Director would produce and it surprised me for a commercial Hollywood movie. I truly enjoyed this. I also enjoyed Forrest Gump and Edward Scissorhands.

My brother's favorite was Silence of the Lambs. I did not go see it at the theatres but when it came out on VHS, I had to watch it in parts. I had to turn it off at times and go for a walk. Scenes like the young girl in the pit really bothered me. I suppose this is one of the great emotional movies of the 90s, but it's not mine. I'm also not a fan of Thelma and Louise. To some, this is the female Easy Rider of the 90s. I didn't care for it but I thought the ending was appropriate. And I didn't like Fargo for some reason; I really wanted to like it. It seems to be on many people's favorite list. I was indifferent, almost bored.

Schindler's List I enjoyed. It might be over-rated as the definitive Holocaust movie. But it will go down in history as one of the good films depicting the horrors of WWII. Saving Private Ryan also gets an honourable mention.

I also liked Luc Besson's Joan of Arc, The Messenger, which just sneaks in at 1999. And I have to throw in Good Will Hunting.

For the so-called 'ballsy' flicks, I will add
Metropolitan
Usual Suspects
Dark City
Pulp Fiction
The Big Lebowski
Three Colors: Blue, White, Red OR the entire Three colours trilogy
Fallen Angels (Wong Kar-Wai) (or Chungking Express)
Leon - the professional (Luc Besson)
Vanya on 42nd Street (Louis Malle)

I might remember something later, so due to the onset of Alzheimer's at my young age, I claim the right to add to this list later :p

Of your propositions, Three Colors is already in the list. I'll consider adding Fisher King, Vanya and Metropolitan - the problem is, I haven't seen 'em (yeah, can't see everything!), but I heard nice things about them. I don't know, maybe I'll put them pending :)

Lola Rennt? Not groundbreaking in any way, but I thought it felt original.

Hana-bi? Or some other Takeshi Kitano flick? Again, nothing groundbreaking, but an interesting and kind of different movie (vis-a-vis hollywood movies).

Along the same lines, what about Kiyoshi Kurosawa? I've only seen Charisma but I thought it was quite an odd movie.

Also, for the Pulp Fiction/Reservoir Dogs crowd, you definitely need to check out the Danish "I Kine Spiser De Hunde". Hilarious. OTOH, I hated "Idioterne". "Festen" is the best Dogma movie I've seen so far.

Further, I personally feel Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas should be on any best-of-the-90s list, but it's hardly a groundbreaking movie in the original sense.

Thanx for these propositions. Here's my take on them :

Lola-Rennt : nice exercice-de-style, but nothing more. A cool fast running and technically impressive and void project.

Hana-bi : Kitano is IMO the most overrated director worldwide. I haven't seen all of his flick, but Hana-bi certainly doesn't cut it in this list. Genre film and nothing more.

Kiyoshi Kurosawa : Only saw Cure, entertaining but nothing impressive. Couldn't say about his other flicks, but seems like a genre-film director too.

Fear and Loathing : good pick, I'll add it.

Mr. T
08-02-2003, 08:59 AM
Did you put The Celebration/Festen/Dogme #1 or whatever you want to call it. Along with Breaking the Waves this is the most important Dogma 95 film.

Disco Volante
08-02-2003, 09:10 AM
Did you put The Celebration/Festen/Dogme #1 or whatever you want to call it. Along with Breaking the Waves this is the most important Dogma 95 film.

Breaking the Waves ain't a Dogma film... ? I haven't put Festen, you consider it the most important one because it's been the first or do you actually think it's the best?

As for me, the Dogma films I've seen, Julien Donkey-Boy and Idioterne are by far the ones I consider the best (and Converging with angels would be the worst - even tho it's still ok).

I'll add Festen and consider adding Breaking the Waves too... (I've add both in the grade-b list ;) - I've add Lovers, Dogme #5 too)

Winger98
08-02-2003, 09:33 AM
Those are really well-known films, maybe Topâzu and Libera Me are a little obscure, but still easy to find. In fact, Von Trier is far from being the most known figure on that list...


You haven't been to a truly Small Town America, have you? ;)

I'm a huge Gilliam (and Hunter Thompson) fan, but I don't think Fear and Loathing deserves to be mentioned as one of the best films of the 90s. It had its moments, but it just left me a bit empty.

A couple of nominations from my admittedly small film experiences:

Insomnia (orginal version). I'm not sure if it came out in the late 90s or early 2000s, but I loved it.

The Kingdom miniseries. I guess it depends on what you want to group under the term "movie" to include television movies, or not. Quite a quirky little thing, though.

Dr_Chimera*
08-02-2003, 09:38 AM
Some good ones (just off the top of my head):

Guilty by Suspicion
Farewell, my Concubine
All About my Mother
Secrets and Lies
Crumb
Gattaca
Three Colours
The Last Seduction
Hearts of Darkness: A Filmmaker's Apocalypse
Unforgiven
Hoop Dreams

Admittedly, I have not seen as many modern foreign films as I have those from the 70's and 80's, but all in good time.

EDIT: I should add Doube Life of Veronique, Glengarry Glen Ross and Un coeur en Hiver.

Disco Volante
08-02-2003, 09:42 AM
You haven't been to a truly Small Town America, have you? ;)

I'm a huge Gilliam (and Hunter Thompson) fan, but I don't think Fear and Loathing deserves to be mentioned as one of the best films of the 90s. It had its moments, but it just left me a bit empty.

A couple of nominations from my admittedly small film experiences:

Insomnia (orginal version). I'm not sure if it came out in the late 90s or early 2000s, but I loved it.

The Kingdom miniseries. I guess it depends on what you want to group under the term "movie" to include television movies, or not. Quite a quirky little thing, though.

Sorry for the "easy to find" comment, should have been more delicate ;)

I haven't seen the original Insomnia (which is from 1997), but the remake was pityful and really I can't see how the original could go beyond the limited scheme the genre imposes on it.

As I already rejected "animation" flicks, I really can't accept a TV-series. But yeah, that was pretty good. I would include Lynch's Twin Peaks first tho if I extended the thing to tv.

Thanks for the propositions and the comments, Fear and Loathing is in grade-B "(very) interesting flicks", so it isn't in the "masperpieces" portion of the list...

Disco Volante
08-02-2003, 09:57 AM
Some good ones (just off the top of my head):

Guilty by Suspicion
Farewell, my Concubine
All About my Mother
Secrets and Lies
Crumb
Gattaca
Three Colours
The Last Seduction
Hearts of Darkness: A Filmmaker's Apocalypse
Unforgiven
Hoop Dreams

Admittedly, I have not seen as many modern foreign films as I have those from the 70's and 80's, but all in good time.

Oh, glad to see you add some propositions.

All about my mother and Three Colors already are in the lists. As for the rest :

Guilty by Suspicion - haven't seen it, but I wanted to... I won't put it pending for now cause it's the first time I see it mentioned as a "great" film

Farewell, my Concubine - I actually thought of putting it in, I suppose since it's by far the best film Chen Kaige made in the 90s, it would be a shame to let it to dry. I'd like if someone who saw most of Zhang Yimou's works in the 90s could tell me which one is his best film, I suppose it's Raise of the red lantern...

Secrets and Lies - I think it's really far from most of Leigh's other works, and absolutely not in the range of Naked. Still, nice film and beautiful performances.

Crumb - Haven't seen it but heard good things about Zwigoff, I'll put it pending

Gattaca - Really not what I'm looking for! Nice, entertaining banal work.

The Last Seduction - Haven't seen it but doesn't look like what I'm looking for (checked the trailer).

Hearts of Darkness: A Filmmaker's Apocalypse - pretty banal too, a thing interesting for the fans. But it reminded me of another film I'll add : Herzog's My best friend.

Unforgiven and Hoop Dreams - No way!

Vladi K
08-02-2003, 10:59 AM
Crash - David Cronenberg - 1996


I am sorry, I like D.C., he is a very good director. However, Crash was one of the worst movies I have ever seen... Perhaps I put too much emphasis on the ideas and thoughts that were introduced in the book and Cronenberg either cut them out or changed them to suit his own notions...

It was very well done.. but to me, the movie was a blasphemy upon one of the better books by one of the greatest writers of 20th century...

Disco Volante
08-02-2003, 11:36 AM
I am sorry, I like D.C., he is a very good director. However, Crash was one of the worst movies I have ever seen... Perhaps I put too much emphasis on the ideas and thoughts that were introduced in the book and Cronenberg either cut them out or changed them to suit his own notions...

It was very well done.. but to me, the movie was a blasphemy upon one of the better books by one of the greatest writers of 20th century...

Oh. That's the opposite of my position on it. Cronenberg's adaptations (for instance, Naked Lunch, or the ideas he had for an American Psycho adaptation), with Kubrick's are my favorites. He doesn't give a crap in "adaptating" the novel, he only take it and builds from it. You actually need to read the book to get to understand where he wants to take you, and that is not where the book alone would took you.

I think Crash is asbolutely brilliant, on every point, including in its link to the novel (edit : which is by the way a very weak point on which to judge a film - one could argue that Le temps retrouvé isn't as good or complet as Proust's writings, it still is one of the narratively and visually more complex work I've ever seen - you should first judge a film on its autonomy, then maybe as a good or not adaptation, which in the case of Crash, is a very good one IMO).

Here's an interesting link : David Cronenberg & JG Ballard - conversation (http://www.oneworld.org/index_oc/issue397/cronenberg.htm)

Habsolution
08-02-2003, 12:49 PM
I'm probably alone on this one but Army of Darkness ranks in my favourites. I strongly suspect that it's not gonna be your style of movies though. But what about "Loin du paradis" ? I don't remember noticing it in this thread ...

Nalyd Psycho
08-02-2003, 12:55 PM
Army of Darkness is a very enjoyable film and one of the most enjoyable, but not one of the best.

Unholy Diver
08-02-2003, 01:03 PM
Im kinda suprised that nobody has mentioned Slingblade I thought it was one helluva movie and billybob was great as Carl Childers


and it was friggin hilarious too

Disco Volante
08-02-2003, 01:38 PM
I'm probably alone on this one but Army of Darkness ranks in my favourites. I strongly suspect that it's not gonna be your style of movies though. But what about "Loin du paradis" ? I don't remember noticing it in this thread ...

Loin du paradis? If you're talking about Far From Heaven, it's 2002. As for Army of Darkness, I'm with Nalyd, it's entertaining and funny but it has nothing to do with the kind of films I'm looking for here. Raimi is technically interesting, but his films are flat.

Im kinda suprised that nobody has mentioned Slingblade I thought it was one helluva movie and billybob was great as Carl Childers


and it was friggin hilarious too

Never saw it. Never heard of it in eulogistic terms before neither.

J-D
08-02-2003, 01:42 PM
Wasn't Pillow Book a Japanese movie or something? I thought it was more recent than that, too...

If my memory serves me right, the original story of the 'Pillow Book' was written during the middle-ages in Japan by a noblewoman, and it's supposed to be a pillar of early Japanese literature...right?

I did not watch the movie though... :blush:

Habsolution
08-02-2003, 01:47 PM
Loin du paradis? If you're talking about Far From Heaven, it's 2002.

Damn! 2002 ? I really thought it was done before that ...

I should have checked. :blush:

As for Army of Darkness it sure wasn't groundbreaking but I just had to give it an honourable mention here. Bruce Campbell is just one of my favourite actor. The best amercian B movie actor ever IMO ! And what a chin ! :bow:

Vincent Vega
08-02-2003, 02:24 PM
As for Army of Darkness it sure wasn't groundbreaking but I just had to give it an honourable mention here. Bruce Campbell is just one of my favourite actor. The best amercian B movie actor ever IMO ! And what a chin ! :bow:

Campbell is the man! Evil Dead 2 was better then Army of Darkness and the original Evil Dead but it was made in the 80's.

Dr_Chimera*
08-02-2003, 02:28 PM
Oh, glad to see you add some propositions.

All about my mother and Three Colors already are in the lists. As for the rest :

Guilty by Suspicion - haven't seen it, but I wanted to... I won't put it pending for now cause it's the first time I see it mentioned as a "great" film

Farewell, my Concubine - I actually thought of putting it in, I suppose since it's by far the best film Chen Kaige made in the 90s, it would be a shame to let it to dry. I'd like if someone who saw most of Zhang Yimou's works in the 90s could tell me which one is his best film, I suppose it's Raise of the red lantern...

Secrets and Lies - I think it's really far from most of Leigh's other works, and absolutely not in the range of Naked. Still, nice film and beautiful performances.

Crumb - Haven't seen it but heard good things about Zwigoff, I'll put it pending

Gattaca - Really not what I'm looking for! Nice, entertaining banal work.

The Last Seduction - Haven't seen it but doesn't look like what I'm looking for (checked the trailer).

Hearts of Darkness: A Filmmaker's Apocalypse - pretty banal too, a thing interesting for the fans. But it reminded me of another film I'll add : Herzog's My best friend.

Unforgiven and Hoop Dreams - No way!

Back the truck up... I never said all of these are GREAT films. From allt he 90's films I've seen - I only consider a few to be great and I failed to mention some OBVIOUS ones like Schindler's List.
Guilty by Suspicion, Gattaca - not great films, but it's among the best ones Hollywood had to offer in this decade.
Hoop Dreams - best documentary I have EVER seen. Arguably the best cinematic piece of work of the decade.

Dr_Chimera*
08-02-2003, 02:30 PM
I am sorry, I like D.C., he is a very good director. However, Crash was one of the worst movies I have ever seen... Perhaps I put too much emphasis on the ideas and thoughts that were introduced in the book and Cronenberg either cut them out or changed them to suit his own notions...

It was very well done.. but to me, the movie was a blasphemy upon one of the better books by one of the greatest writers of 20th century...

Original, worth a look, but, by no means, a GREAT film.

Disco Volante
08-02-2003, 03:15 PM
Original, worth a look, but, by no means, a GREAT film.

I suppose that was bound to happen... ;)

Deeply original, worth to be seen again, visually and thematically fulfilling, and, by no means, NOT A GREAT film.

KungFuPenguin
08-02-2003, 04:26 PM
Thanx for these propositions. Here's my take on them [snip]

I guess one-for-four isn't too bad.

Triple Klutz
08-02-2003, 04:29 PM
Some good ones (just off the top of my head):

Crumb

Now that's a great film.

Gee Wally
08-02-2003, 04:42 PM
well I ain't big on the artsy stuff....

but i sure liked " Shrek"..


:)

Mr. T
08-02-2003, 05:11 PM
I suggested The Celebration simply because it's Dogme #1. I think they are close to 30 in the Dogme series now.

The independent film world has produced a bunch of films that are close to dogme 95, but not really (i.e. 28 Days Later). So as far as being influential I'd definitely put it up there.

Mr. T
08-02-2003, 05:18 PM
Breaking the Waves isn't technically a Dogme 95 film but I always lump it in as one. I put it on the list for the same reason as The Celebration.

Dr_Chimera*
08-02-2003, 06:08 PM
I suppose that was bound to happen... ;)

Deeply original, worth to be seen again, visually and thematically fulfilling, and, by no means, NOT A GREAT film.

I didn't find it to be thematically fullfilling.
Some like to give high points for originality, but that's like giving Hitler points for political originality for inventing the swastika, because no one did it before.
Flame me for that analogy, but c'mon - a film can be daring and in some ways original, but it's importance is lost when the big picture is ignored. How does the film affect your life? Does it shock you just for effect or does it truly teach and fullfill in a personal way?

I have respect for the film, but I'll never overrate it as something that it isn't. I share the same opinion for most David Lynch films. Sometimes it's just all smoke and mirrors. That's not enough.

Disco Volante
08-02-2003, 10:01 PM
I didn't find it to be thematically fullfilling.
Some like to give high points for originality, but that's like giving Hitler points for political originality for inventing the swastika, because no one did it before.
Flame me for that analogy, but c'mon - a film can be daring and in some ways original, but it's importance is lost when the big picture is ignored. How does the film affect your life? Does it shock you just for effect or does it truly teach and fullfill in a personal way?

I have respect for the film, but I'll never overrate it as something that it isn't. I share the same opinion for most David Lynch films. Sometimes it's just all smoke and mirrors. That's not enough.

Just can't see the link with Lynch's work. Smoke and mirrors? I could understand someone without a clue could think Lynch's films are, but what's smoking and mirroring about Crash? It's a straight linear story that gets you from point A to point B and that really doesn't use tricky narrative complexification like Lynch do. You can say Raoul Ruiz's all smoke and mirrors (that would be plain wrong, but I'd understand where you stand), maybe Cronenberg's Videodrome, but Crash I can't understand.

Unless you've really been shoked by it and you think it was gratuitous. Neither applys to me so I couldn't say. As for the Hitler analogy, well it was a little laughable, but hey, I have no problem with it. Hitler should be recalled has an important political figure - I suppose he is the archetype of what is not entertaining, or fun, or good, but still brilliant in his own demented way.

How does the film affect your life? Does it shock you just for effect or does it truly teach and fullfill in a personal way?

Apparently, as you compares it to Hitler, it did affect your life. But hey, I guess it could depend on the viewer here. I don't think great art needs to affect your life or fulfill you in a personal way, maybe only have an impact on your perception of things... But aesthetics and intelligence can meet without affecting me on a personal level. The Russian Ark for example didn't affect me at all, could affect you a lot I suppose, still I consider it one of the great films I saw recently.

But hey, you could be affected or compelled on a personal level by Crash, its relation to our sexual times is relevant - its One Night/Car Crash where everything (life and death) is reduced to nano-timeframes ; the relation of (sexual) flesh to objects... And formally, Crash is brilliant, Cronenberg gets the same cold yet vicious POV on damaged cars than on bruised flesh so that form and content get along pretty well. You can chose not to, but Crash is definitely a film that has the necessary elements to initiate a rather extensive reflection.

Dr_Chimera*
08-03-2003, 07:28 AM
Just can't see the link with Lynch's work. Smoke and mirrors? I could understand someone without a clue could think Lynch's films are, but what's smoking and mirroring about Crash? It's a straight linear story that gets you from point A to point B and that really doesn't use tricky narrative complexification like Lynch do. You can say Raoul Ruiz's all smoke and mirrors (that would be plain wrong, but I'd understand where you stand), maybe Cronenberg's Videodrome, but Crash I can't understand.

Unless you've really been shoked by it and you think it was gratuitous. Neither applys to me so I couldn't say. As for the Hitler analogy, well it was a little laughable, but hey, I have no problem with it. Hitler should be recalled has an important political figure - I suppose he is the archetype of what is not entertaining, or fun, or good, but still brilliant in his own demented way.

How does the film affect your life? Does it shock you just for effect or does it truly teach and fullfill in a personal way?

Apparently, as you compares it to Hitler, it did affect your life. But hey, I guess it could depend on the viewer here. I don't think great art needs to affect your life or fulfill you in a personal way, maybe only have an impact on your perception of things... But aesthetics and intelligence can meet without affecting me on a personal level. The Russian Ark for example didn't affect me at all, could affect you a lot I suppose, still I consider it one of the great films I saw recently.

But hey, you could be affected or compelled on a personal level by Crash, its relation to our sexual times is relevant - its One Night/Car Crash where everything (life and death) is reduced to nano-timeframes ; the relation of (sexual) flesh to objects... And formally, Crash is brilliant, Cronenberg gets the same cold yet vicious POV on damaged cars than on bruised flesh so that form and content get along pretty well. You can chose not to, but Crash is definitely a film that has the necessary elements to initiate a rather extensive reflection.

The link with Lynch is that the movie tries to shock you, but really doesn't teach you much. I'm not saying Crash is like Lynch, that may not have been the best analogy, but nevertheless.

And, yes, I don't disagree that there was 'extensive reflexion', but in my books that is not enough to grade "Crash" as anything else than a 3-star flick (high points for originality and, hey, anything with James Spader is worth watching, IMO). However, the films left me feeling hollow - it's a pretentious flick that tries hard to be great, but just doesn't have the substance to get there (and this is somewhat similiar to Lynch - not necessarily in style, but in expectations).

I should also add that I found the characters to be extremely uninteresting. It was very unsatisfying to watch these undeveloped figures that don't do anything to make you care about them. That's a big minus - I guess some are very quick to just ignore something like this in favour of visuals, sympolism or whatnot.

P.S. Russian Ark - also high points for originality, but it moved me because it taught me, it didn't simply wave the "hey, I'm so great" tag in front of my face. It wouldn't make my top 100 (it's not that great), but it's a solid 3 1/2 star - approaching 4-star experience.

Dr_Chimera*
08-03-2003, 07:31 AM
As for the Hitler analogy, well it was a little laughable, but hey, I have no problem with it. Hitler should be recalled has an important political figure - I suppose he is the archetype of what is not entertaining, or fun, or good, but still brilliant in his own demented way.

He was certainly convincing - but he was not brilliant. Hitler was a byproduct of a nation filled with hate and chaos. There was nothing brilliant about Hitler - he came into power due to the weaknesses of others, not due to his own strength of character.

Dr_Chimera*
08-03-2003, 07:44 AM
I also want to add "Bob Roberts" to the list (if there's a list) of really good 90's films.

DallasStars2003
08-03-2003, 08:24 AM
I agree with PornoHolocaust on the point that everyone, including me, should see more foreign movies, but oh well, as for the movies I've actually seen, my favorite ones from the 90s are Pulp Fiction, Forrest Gump, American Beauty, Saving Private Ryan, Reservoir Dogs, Braveheart and The Boondock Saints.

Disco Volante
08-03-2003, 08:37 AM
The link with Lynch is that the movie tries to shock you, but really doesn't teach you much. I'm not saying Crash is like Lynch, that may not have been the best analogy, but nevertheless.

And, yes, I don't disagree that there was 'extensive reflexion', but in my books that is not enough to grade "Crash" as anything else than a 3-star flick (high points for originality and, hey, anything with James Spader is worth watching, IMO). However, the films left me feeling hollow - it's a pretentious flick that tries hard to be great, but just doesn't have the substance to get there (and this is somewhat similiar to Lynch - not necessarily in style, but in expectations).

I should also add that I found the characters to be extremely uninteresting. It was very unsatisfying to watch these undeveloped figures that don't do anything to make you care about them. That's a big minus - I guess some are very quick to just ignore something like this in favour of visuals, sympolism or whatnot.

P.S. Russian Ark - also high points for originality, but it moved me because it taught me, it didn't simply wave the "hey, I'm so great" tag in front of my face. It wouldn't make my top 100 (it's not that great), but it's a solid 3 1/2 star - approaching 4-star experience.

I don't really believe in rating movies with stars or notes out of 10, etc. But I suppose you approach movies like Mediafilm, a thing we have here that rates them all. For example, Night of the Living-Dead, when it came out, had a 7 (for miserable), as of today it now has a 4 (for good) and you can bet in 20 years it will have a 2 (for excellent). You seem to approach films the same way, contemporary films not being on the same level... I suppose if Russian Ark had 40 years, it would make your top-100 (and by the way, it certainly wouldn't make mine, I've seen a lot more than 100 masterpieces and I don't consider Russian Ark one, only a great little film - belonging in that "grade-B" list).

Crash doesn't teach you much? Leaves you feeling hollow? I think it's a very restrictive way to judge a film. So what did Unforgiven teach you? or whatever, I'm curious what you feel you've learned in Profession:Reporter or in 8 1/2 too... What about an educative film that's kind of touching? would it then be great filmmaking?

Yeah I'm very quick to "ignore" things like unexpressive and undevelopped characters (which is a trademark of Antonioni), in fact I'm rather very quick to ask myself in what way does it contribute to the whole. I've said it before, the non-jeu is an essential characteristic of my favorite film (Les trois couronnes du matelot), at one point the actors are sitting at a table drinking, giving their lines mechanically like they don't give a ****. It makes sense in the film... Making you care about characters is in no way essential to film, it's only essential to commercial ones - ones made to come see the sequel or the next film by the same actor. You just can't judge the quality of a film by the attachment you get to the characters - did you care for the guy who dies in Snow's Wavelenght?

I also can't understand why you'd tag Lynch of lacking substance. If he has a problem it's rather a surplus of substance. You can't, in both cases, just sit and wait for the "substance" to reveal itself, there is, like in most great films (and here again, see Antonioni), an effort to be made by the viewer to "get there". As for Lynch, he practices open narratives (see Alain Resnais) and you just can't ask for a complete and definitive solution to his "intrigues".

As for Crash being pretentious. That's a load of crap. It's pretentious because it shocked you? Because it "tries to be great"? I suppose you are among those who also tag Godard as being pretentious? Or has he a name big enough to be spare? I don't see how Crash would have less substance than Ozu's work, or most of Hitchcock's work (which I wouldn't call great in any way - for examples, the Rope, or the Birds - substance?). Crash is a brilliant film as far as aesthetics and thought-provocation are concerned, in fact I don't see a single weakness in that film. Vladi K can hate it cause it's infidel to a book he loves, he'd be in part right about it, but it doesn't take anything from the movie itself.

Now, can we have some more propositions please? :)

Disco Volante
08-03-2003, 08:40 AM
I also want to add "Bob Roberts" to the list (if there's a list) of really good 90's films.

Not the kind of film I'm looking for, but keep 'em coming... I'll add The Eel.

Dr_Chimera*
08-03-2003, 12:37 PM
I don't really believe in rating movies with stars or notes out of 10, etc. But I suppose you approach movies like Mediafilm, a thing we have here that rates them all. For example, Night of the Living-Dead, when it came out, had a 7 (for miserable), as of today it now has a 4 (for good) and you can bet in 20 years it will have a 2 (for excellent). You seem to approach films the same way, contemporary films not being on the same level... I suppose if Russian Ark had 40 years, it would make your top-100 (and by the way, it certainly wouldn't make mine, I've seen a lot more than 100 masterpieces and I don't consider Russian Ark one, only a great little film - belonging in that "grade-B" list).

Well, stars or ratings are just there as a dumbed-down way to provide someone with the idea as to how good the movie is. Like, when someone asks me - how good is this flick - when I say it's a good, solid, enjoyable flick - that means it's a 3-star flick. It's like classifying certain films as B-movies. You may not be a fan of it, but that's accepted as a norm.
As for rating films after years and decades - well, I frankly don't know how I'll rate Russian ark few decades from now. And you're wrong to assume that I'd rate it a certain way, because 40 years from now I'll be very old and most likely with different opinions and tastes. The big question is - how well will this film age? Well, I and you will not know until we see it 40 years from now.
For example, Marlon Brando and "The Wild One" was the definition of cool in the 50's, now it just seems silly. It hasn't aged well - could we have predicted that back then? Well, no one. Hence, we wait.



Crash doesn't teach you much? Leaves you feeling hollow? I think it's a very restrictive way to judge a film. So what did Unforgiven teach you? or whatever, I'm curious what you feel you've learned in Profession:Reporter or in 8 1/2 too... What about an educative film that's kind of touching? would it then be great filmmaking?

Well, if something leaves me hollow, I generally tend to NOT classify it as a great film and if it leaves me kind of hollow, it might be generous to rate it as a good film.
8 1/2 didn't leave me feeling hollow. It's about a person who seems like... well, he's a person. It's a character that is developed and developed in a personal way. In a way that you care. I do not care about the characters in Crash on nearly the same level and I do not care about the situations in Crash nearly on the same level.
That said, I like the originality, but there are simply too many minuses there for me to call it anything more than simply a film I can recommend for anyone looking to see something unique.
A lot of people were divided on Crash - I guess we are divided on it too. I really have no problem with that - I just don't agree. We can leave it there.


Yeah I'm very quick to "ignore" things like unexpressive and undevelopped characters (which is a trademark of Antonioni), in fact I'm rather very quick to ask myself in what way does it contribute to the whole. I've said it before, the non-jeu is an essential characteristic of my favorite film (Les trois couronnes du matelot), at one point the actors are sitting at a table drinking, giving their lines mechanically like they don't give a ****. It makes sense in the film... Making you care about characters is in no way essential to film, it's only essential to commercial ones - ones made to come see the sequel or the next film by the same actor. You just can't judge the quality of a film by the attachment you get to the characters - did you care for the guy who dies in Snow's Wavelenght?

IMO, Antonioni is indeed about characters. I just don't think you see it like I do.
Attachment to characters is not central (it's a part, a percentage) - but it is something that you often long for in certain films. Crash tries to present something original, unique - but it makes its point once, then it makes it twice and by the time you're done with the first half hour or 45 minutes of the movie, there's nothing new left. Thus, I feel that a greater attention to characters would have helped the film, yes.


I also can't understand why you'd tag Lynch of lacking substance. If he has a problem it's rather a surplus of substance. You can't, in both cases, just sit and wait for the "substance" to reveal itself, there is, like in most great films (and here again, see Antonioni), an effort to be made by the viewer to "get there". As for Lynch, he practices open narratives (see Alain Resnais) and you just can't ask for a complete and definitive solution to his "intrigues".

David Lynch was once asked about one of his films - about meaning, what he was getting at, etc. He had nothing to say. This is a filmmaker who himself doesn't know where he's going.
Now, while I find his lack of response somewhat troubling, I would admit that I recommend most Lynch films. Then again, I also believe that he most of the time doesn't know what he's getting at and while once in a while he'll get a hit, other times he will miss.


As for Crash being pretentious. That's a load of crap. It's pretentious because it shocked you? Because it "tries to be great"? I suppose you are among those who also tag Godard as being pretentious? Or has he a name big enough to be spare? I don't see how Crash would have less substance than Ozu's work, or most of Hitchcock's work (which I wouldn't call great in any way - for examples, the Rope, or the Birds - substance?). Crash is a brilliant film as far as aesthetics and thought-provocation are concerned, in fact I don't see a single weakness in that film. Vladi K can hate it cause it's infidel to a book he loves, he'd be in part right about it, but it doesn't take anything from the movie itself.
I think Godard is very overrated. Then again, why you would compare him to Lynch (bring him up at all) really confuses me. He's nothing like Lynch.
I find a lot of Godard's work - especially "Breathless" to be good, but not great.

I guess we just have different tastes. IMO, you're too buried in cinematic surrealism and you seem to reject everything else as sub-par work.

Dr_Chimera*
08-03-2003, 12:40 PM
Not the kind of film I'm looking for, but keep 'em coming... I'll add The Eel.

Well, exactly. You're not very open-minded to films that do not fit that style that you seem to prefer.
This is a solid contemporary political satire that just happens to deal with the United States. Not your thing, I guess.

Disco Volante
08-03-2003, 01:07 PM
A lot of people were divided on Crash - I guess we are divided on it too. I really have no problem with that - I just don't agree. We can leave it there.

Yeah, I think it's for the best (we'll try not to put on a sequel to the Cameronesque circus ;) ), I'll only add a few things.

IMO, Antonioni is indeed about characters. I just don't think you see it like I do.
Attachment to characters is not central (it's a part, a percentage) - but it is something that you often long for in certain films. Crash tries to present something original, unique - but it makes its point once, then it makes it twice and by the time you're done with the first half hour or 45 minutes of the movie, there's nothing new left. Thus, I feel that a greater attention to characters would have helped the film, yes.

Antonioni is a master of non-acting (non-jeu), his films evolve around characters for sure, but mostly undevelopped and un-charismatic ones(things you hold against Crash) - think of David Hemmings in Blowup for example. It goes with the global signification of the film. Crash would have suffered a lot from greater attention to characters in my opinion : they're cold, they're nearly inanimate and the viewer feels great distance with them - they're presented as flesh objects, that can be bruised, that can be repared, etc. Caring about them would have turn Crash into a nice little tale about sexual perversion, which it is not - no wonder you feel there's nothing more to it after 30 minutes, you've taken a dead-end.

David Lynch was once asked about one of his films - about meaning, what he was getting at, etc. He had nothing to say. This is a filmmaker who himself doesn't know where he's going.

I won't go there. Believe what you want about the importance of Lynch's own point of view on his work, it's a totally different and complicated debate. But anyway, Lynch has interests in not-divulging his schemes, his sales drive on the "cult".

I think Godard is very overrated. Then again, why you would compare him to Lynch (bring him up at all) really confuses me. He's nothing like Lynch.
I find a lot of Godard's work - especially "Breathless" to be good, but not great.

I didn't compare Godard to Lynch, I was referring to you thinking Crash was pretentious. Because lots of people, when feeling they're in front of something that exceeds them, will tag it as pretentious, I'm not saying that's what you did with Crash, but I commented on Godard because most Godard-haters are in that position. I think only people that are really off-track and shouldn't in the first place try to see his works or people that really haven't seen what he's done says Godard is overrated. I think you must fit in the second category. Breathless is the only Godard film that's been really seen by lots of people, personnally I think it's his worst film (of those I saw). Passion and Numéro 2 are two of my favorite films of all time and are masterpieces of a true genius.

I guess we just have different tastes. IMO, you're too buried in cinematic surrealism and you seem to reject everything else as sub-par work.

Cinematic surrealism? I don't really see what you're talking about. There's only three true surrealist films that's been made (and I finally saw the one I was missing this summer in Paris) and tho one could say some directors I love like Ruiz and Bunuel (except Un Chien Andalou and L'âge d'Or which are truly surrealists) are influenced by surrealism and traces of it can be found in their work, I think it's a very small part of the things I love. Lynch, a director I think has done great things and bad things and that is really not one of my favorites, can too be link to surrealism influence. But I fail to see how Crash and most of the films I put in the list (see my first post) can be connected to the movement.

And I'd remind you our tastes aren't that different when we look at past decades, it only seems to deverge on contemporary works. And let's admit it, I more of a boy of its time ;)

Disco Volante
08-03-2003, 01:14 PM
Well, exactly. You're not very open-minded to films that do not fit that style that you seem to prefer.
This is a solid contemporary political satire that just happens to deal with the United States. Not your thing, I guess.

What style? I fail to see the link between Libera Me and Happy Together, in fact I'd say there is much more diversity in the films I listed than in the ones you proposed...

If you wanna tell me Tim Robbins is a great director who's work should be viewed on the level of Trier, Kieslowski, Kiarostami and others (ok, there is some aliens in my list too), I have nothing against it, I'll check it up some day, but I hope your realize what I'm talking about... I ain't saying it's not a solid contemporary political satire, I'm wondering at what extent it can be a great FILM, where form and content get together to a unique union of intelligence and aesthetics (woah, I pissed myself with this silly formulation)...

Dr_Chimera*
08-03-2003, 01:49 PM
is a master of non-acting (non-jeu), his films evolve around characters for sure, but mostly undevelopped and un-charismatic ones(things you hold against Crash) - think of David Hemmings in Blowup for example. It goes with the global signification of the film. Crash would have suffered a lot from greater attention to characters in my opinion : they're cold, they're nearly inanimate and the viewer feels great distance with them - they're presented as flesh objects, that can be bruised, that can be repared, etc. Caring about them would have turn Crash into a nice little tale about sexual perversion, which it is not - no wonder you feel there's nothing more to it after 30 minutes, you've taken a dead-end.

IMO, you watch a film because you care. I don't employ a different thought about films. There's something in Antonioni that pulls me in. Crash just doesn't.


Cinematic surrealism? I don't really see what you're talking about. There's only three true surrealist films that's been made (and I finally saw the one I was missing this summer in Paris) and tho one could say some directors I love like Ruiz and Bunuel (except Un Chien Andalou and L'âge d'Or which are truly surrealists) are influenced by surrealism and traces of it can be found in their work, I think it's a very small part of the things I love. Lynch, a director I think has done great things and bad things and that is really not one of my favorites, can too be link to surrealism influence. But I fail to see how Crash and most of the films I put in the list (see my first post) can be connected to the movement.

It's not? How is it not? Surrealism is a movement that focused on the subconcous and Crash explores the sexual subconcious and its ties to danger, etc. I think it is, in certain ways, surrealistic.

Brownies
08-03-2003, 01:51 PM
JONIK seems to gave up his ongoing thread on 90s "masterpieces from beginning to end", and I didn't get to post my choices... This kind of things is crappy, but here's anyway some films I think are chef-d'oeuvres of the decade :

Yume - Akira Kurosawa - 1990
Europa - Lars Von Trier - 1991
Topâzu - Ryu Murakami - 1992
Calendar - Atom Egoyan - 1993
Naked - Mike Leigh - 1993
Libera Me - Alain Cavalier - 1993
Smoking/No Smoking - Alain Resnais - 1993
Trois couleurs : bleu, blanc, rouge - Krzysztof Kieslowski - 1993/94/94
Under the Olive Trees - Abbas Kiarostami - 1994
Vive l'amour - Tsai Ming Liang - 1994
Una Pura Formalita - Giuseppe Tornatore - 1994
To Vlemma tou Odyssea - Theo Angelopoulos - 1995
Underground - Emir Kusturica - 1995
Crash - David Cronenberg - 1996
The Pillow Book - Peter Greenaway - 1996
Gummo - Harmony Korine - 1997
Funny Games - Micheal Haneke - 1997
Happy Together - Wong Kar-Wai - 1997
Idioterne - Lars Von Trier - 1998
New Rose Hotel - Abel Ferrara - 1998
Le temps retrouvé - Raoul Ruiz - 1999
Romance - Catherine Breillat - 1999
Eyes Wide Shut - Stanley Kubrick - 1999
Julien Donkey-Boy - Harmony Korine - 1999
Mein liebster Feind - Klaus Kinski - Werner Herzog - 1999

Some other interesting flicks from the decade :

Riff-Raff - Ken Loach - 1990
Nuit d'été en ville - Michel Deville - 1990
Zendegi edame darad - Abbas Kiarostami - 1991
Barton Fink - Coen and Coen - 1991
Delicatessen - Caro and Jeunet - 1991
What's Eating Gilbert Grape - Lasse Hallstrom - 1993
Ba wang bie ji (Farewell my Concubine) - Chen Kaige - 1993
Kika - Pedro Almodovar - 1993
Dangerous Game - Abbel Ferrara - 1993
Pulp Fiction - Quentin Tarantino - 1994
Chungking Express - Wong Kar-Wai - 1994
Le vent du Wyoming - André Forcier - 1994
Utomlyonnye solntsem - Nikita Mikhalkov - 1994
Dead Man - Jim Jarmusch - 1995
Lovers - Jean-Marc Barr - 1999
La cité des enfants perdus - Caro and Jeunet - 1995
Lumière et compagnie - collective work - 1995
Trois vies et une seule mort - Raoul Ruiz - 1996
Lilies - John Greyson - 1996
Breaking the Waves - Lars Von Trier - 1996
Lost Highway - David Lynch - 1997
The Sweet Hereafter - Atom Egoyan - 1997
Unagi - Shohei Imamura - 1997
The River - Tsai Ming-Liang - 1997
The Hole - Tsai Ming-Liang - 1998
Dieu seul me voit - Bruno Podalydès - 1998
Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas - Terry Gilliam - 1998
Tango - Carlos Saura - 1998
Fin août, début septembre - Olivier Assayas - 1998
Buffalo 66 - Vincent Gallo - 1998
Festen - Thomas Vinterberg - 1998
Being John Malkovich - Spike Jonze - 1999
Fight Club - David Fincher - 1999
Todo sobre mi madre - Pedro Almodovar - 1999
Rien sur Robert - Pascal Bonitzer - 1999
Bad ma ra khahad bord - Abbas Kiarostami - 1999

Pending*:

Metropolitan - Whit Stillman - 1990
The Fisher King - Terry Gilliam - 1991
Vanya on 42nd Street - Louis Malle - 1994
Crumb - Terry Zwigoff - 1994

List far from complete (and growing) and I'll invite any film buff (Mr.T - Chimera - kjk - etc.) to suggest other titles I could add to it (I'll be the judge, so no, Memento won't be add).


(by the way - where is dempsey_k??)

*disclaimer : I am not responsible for the quality of the films that are pending... :p

If it wasn't you (because I know you know a lot about movies), I would say you put eyes wide shut there just because it's a Kubrick movie. I love it, but it's not a masterpiece. Some of his previous work like a Clockwork orange are much more impressing. I would add a few movies to that list like "la vie est belle" (la vita est bella or something like it...), but your list shows alot about your wide wisdom about movies. Good work.

Dr_Chimera*
08-03-2003, 01:53 PM
What style? I fail to see the link between Libera Me and Happy Together, in fact I'd say there is much more diversity in the films I listed than in the ones you proposed...

If you wanna tell me Tim Robbins is a great director who's work should be viewed on the level of Trier, Kieslowski, Kiarostami and others (ok, there is some aliens in my list too), I have nothing against it, I'll check it up some day, but I hope your realize what I'm talking about... I ain't saying it's not a solid contemporary political satire, I'm wondering at what extent it can be a great FILM, where form and content get together to a unique union of intelligence and aesthetics (woah, I pissed myself with this silly formulation)...

lol - I'm just having fun with ya. Got you all uptight, though. :D

mamettt
08-03-2003, 02:01 PM
For the best of the 90's, you have to turn to the international arena. Great north American films, IMO, were few and far between.

Tsai Ming Liang's Taipei trilogy: rebels of the neon god, vive lamour, the river.

Simply 3 of the most unforgettable and thought provoking films that you'll see. Deals with modern day dissillusionment, the emotional disconnection brought on by commerialism, and the transition from old taiwain to new taiwan.

Hou Hsiao-Hsien's good men good women, the puppetmaster, goodbye south, goodbye north

Hou's works are essentially studies and explorations of taiwanese identity, history, and the effect of taiwan's disconection from the mainland on modern day taiwan. His minimalist style rivals that of japanese master Ozu.

Hou Hsiao-Hsien's flowers of shanghai

The first of Hou's films to be set outside of taiwan, this is perhaps the best film of the 1990's. The film tells the story of 3 different couples inside a shanghai brothel in the 19th century. The film is shot entirely on cande light, and I have yet to see a film as visually stunning. It is truly an emotional experience.

The fifth generation's four films: the blue kite (Tian Zhuangzhuang ), Raise the Red Lantern and To Live (Zhang Yimou), and Farewell my Concubine (Chen Kaige)

There were four important and great films that came out of China in the 1990's that changed chinese cinema, and our perception of it, forever. The films are directed by the graduates of the so called "fifth generation" of chinese directors to come out of the beijing film academy. Before the fifth generation, most chinese films were government sanctioned propoganda. These films were the culmination of a revival of creative expression in chinese film.

All 3 men lived through and experienced Mao's cultural revolution, and for the exception of Lantern , each film deals with modern chinese history, and it's effect on the family, art, culture, etc. Lantern is essentially a film about sexual domination and submission. What is remarkable about these films is the creative and artisitc drive they are filled with. They are bursts of creativity following the long repression of Maoism. Each director has never been quite able to equal the creative excitement and artistic drive shown in these films.

Wong Kar-Wai's happy together

Artist fantastique Wong Kar-Wai has a huge international following, and so he should. His visual style is unlike anything you've ever seen- bold, fierce, and coloful. His films bounce with the same energy as classic Godard. Wong's Chunking Express, Fallen Angels, and Ashes of Time are all films that deserve mention when speaking about the best of the 1990's, but happy together is Wong's most accomplished and emotionally complete film.

Krzysztof Kieslowski's Red and Blue

Dr_Chimera*
08-03-2003, 02:04 PM
JONIK seems to gave up his ongoing thread on 90s "masterpieces from beginning to end", and I didn't get to post my choices... This kind of things is crappy, but here's anyway some films I think are chef-d'oeuvres of the decade :

Yume - Akira Kurosawa - 1990
Europa - Lars Von Trier - 1991
Topâzu - Ryu Murakami - 1992
Calendar - Atom Egoyan - 1993
Naked - Mike Leigh - 1993
Libera Me - Alain Cavalier - 1993
Smoking/No Smoking - Alain Resnais - 1993
Trois couleurs : bleu, blanc, rouge - Krzysztof Kieslowski - 1993/94/94
Under the Olive Trees - Abbas Kiarostami - 1994
Vive l'amour - Tsai Ming Liang - 1994
Una Pura Formalita - Giuseppe Tornatore - 1994
To Vlemma tou Odyssea - Theo Angelopoulos - 1995
Underground - Emir Kusturica - 1995
Crash - David Cronenberg - 1996
The Pillow Book - Peter Greenaway - 1996
Gummo - Harmony Korine - 1997
Funny Games - Micheal Haneke - 1997
Happy Together - Wong Kar-Wai - 1997
Idioterne - Lars Von Trier - 1998
New Rose Hotel - Abel Ferrara - 1998
Le temps retrouvé - Raoul Ruiz - 1999
Romance - Catherine Breillat - 1999
Eyes Wide Shut - Stanley Kubrick - 1999
Julien Donkey-Boy - Harmony Korine - 1999
Mein liebster Feind - Klaus Kinski - Werner Herzog - 1999

Some other interesting flicks from the decade :

Riff-Raff - Ken Loach - 1990
Nuit d'été en ville - Michel Deville - 1990
Zendegi edame darad - Abbas Kiarostami - 1991
Barton Fink - Coen and Coen - 1991
Delicatessen - Caro and Jeunet - 1991
What's Eating Gilbert Grape - Lasse Hallstrom - 1993
Ba wang bie ji (Farewell my Concubine) - Chen Kaige - 1993
Kika - Pedro Almodovar - 1993
Dangerous Game - Abbel Ferrara - 1993
Pulp Fiction - Quentin Tarantino - 1994
Chungking Express - Wong Kar-Wai - 1994
Le vent du Wyoming - André Forcier - 1994
Utomlyonnye solntsem - Nikita Mikhalkov - 1994
Dead Man - Jim Jarmusch - 1995
Lovers - Jean-Marc Barr - 1999
La cité des enfants perdus - Caro and Jeunet - 1995
Lumière et compagnie - collective work - 1995
Trois vies et une seule mort - Raoul Ruiz - 1996
Lilies - John Greyson - 1996
Breaking the Waves - Lars Von Trier - 1996
Lost Highway - David Lynch - 1997
The Sweet Hereafter - Atom Egoyan - 1997
Unagi - Shohei Imamura - 1997
The River - Tsai Ming-Liang - 1997
The Hole - Tsai Ming-Liang - 1998
Dieu seul me voit - Bruno Podalydès - 1998
Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas - Terry Gilliam - 1998
Tango - Carlos Saura - 1998
Fin août, début septembre - Olivier Assayas - 1998
Buffalo 66 - Vincent Gallo - 1998
Festen - Thomas Vinterberg - 1998
Being John Malkovich - Spike Jonze - 1999
Fight Club - David Fincher - 1999
Todo sobre mi madre - Pedro Almodovar - 1999
Rien sur Robert - Pascal Bonitzer - 1999
Bad ma ra khahad bord - Abbas Kiarostami - 1999

Pending*:

Metropolitan - Whit Stillman - 1990
The Fisher King - Terry Gilliam - 1991
Vanya on 42nd Street - Louis Malle - 1994
Crumb - Terry Zwigoff - 1994

List far from complete (and growing) and I'll invite any film buff (Mr.T - Chimera - kjk - etc.) to suggest other titles I could add to it (I'll be the judge, so no, Memento won't be add).


(by the way - where is dempsey_k??)

*disclaimer : I am not responsible for the quality of the films that are pending...

Should be there (for sure):

Hoop Dreams
Farewell, my Concubine
Secrets and Lies
Doube Life of Veronique

- There is no good justification for keeping Hoop Dreams out of the list. It's a magnifiscent picture which is like a slice of life - it applies to millions basketball-playing teenagers (mainly blacks) and captures their lifestyles and desires like no other film I've ever seen. Keeping this film off this list is like leaving a country off a map.

Disco Volante
08-03-2003, 02:06 PM
It's not? How is it not? Surrealism is a movement that focused on the subconcous and Crash explores the sexual subconcious and its ties to danger, etc. I think it is, in certain ways, surrealistic.

Hmmm, further proof surrealism is the most misused word ever (I wrote a text about just that, but in french).

If it wasn't you (because I know you know a lot about movies), I would say you put eyes wide shut there just because it's a Kubrick movie. I love it, but it's not a masterpiece. Some of his previous work like a Clockwork orange are much more impressing. I would add a few movies to that list like "la vie est belle" (la vita est bella or something like it...), but your list shows alot about your wide wisdom about movies. Good work.

I stated it before, Eyes Wide Shut is my favorite Kubrick film and the one I think is the best. You can read this (http://www.plume-noire.com/movies/reviews/eyeswideshut.html) (but don't mind the syntax and spelling - if you read french I'll give you a better link) for a summarization of my take on the film.

I thought of adding La vie est belle, maybe I will, I'll rethink it now that I have a "vote" for it. And get me more propositions! :)

:teach: . o O ( wide wisdom?! gee I wonder if tha boy was sarcastic )

Disco Volante
08-03-2003, 02:10 PM
For the best of the 90's, you have to turn to the international arena. Great north American films, IMO, were few and far between.

Tsai Ming Liang's Taipei trilogy: rebels of the neon god, vive lamour, the river.

Simply 3 of the most unforgettable and thought provoking films that you'll see. Deals with modern day dissillusionment, the emotional disconnection brought on by commerialism, and the transition from old taiwain to new taiwan.

Hou Hsiao-Hsien's good men good women, the puppetmaster, goodbye south, goodbye north

Hou's works are essentially studies and explorations of taiwanese identity, history, and the effect of taiwan's disconection from the mainland on modern day taiwan. His minimalist style rivals that of japanese master Ozu.

Hou Hsiao-Hsien's flowers of shanghai

The first of Hou's films to be set outside of taiwan, this is perhaps the best film of the 1990's. The film tells the story of 3 different couples inside a shanghai brothel in the 19th century. The film is shot entirely on cande light, and I have yet to see a film as visually stunning. It is truly an emotional experience.

The fifth generation's four films: the blue kite (Tian Zhuangzhuang ), Raise the Red Lantern and To Live (Zhang Yimou), and Farewell my Concubine (Chen Kaige)

There were four important and great films that came out of China in the 1990's that changed chinese cinema, and our perception of it, forever. The films are directed by the graduates of the so called "fifth generation" of chinese directors to come out of the beijing film academy. Before the fifth generation, most chinese films were government sanctioned propoganda. These films were the culmination of a revival of creative expression in chinese film.

All 3 men lived through and experienced Mao's cultural revolution, and for the exception of Lantern , each film deals with modern chinese history, and it's effect on the family, art, culture, etc. Lantern is essentially a film about sexual domination and submission. What is remarkable about these films is the creative and artisitc drive they are filled with. They are bursts of creativity following the long repression of Maoism. Each director has never been quite able to equal the creative excitement and artistic drive shown in these films.

Wong Kar-Wai's happy together

Artist fantastique Wong Kar-Wai has a huge international following, and so he should. His visual style is unlike anything you've ever seen- bold, fierce, and coloful. His films bounce with the same energy as classic Godard. Wong's Chunking Express, Fallen Angels, and Ashes of Time are all films that deserve mention when speaking about the best of the 1990's, but happy together is Wong's most accomplished and emotionally complete film.

Krzysztof Kieslowski's Red and Blue

:bow: :bow:

Thanks for your propositions!! Lots were already in the list (see the first post of the thread), but I'll add most of others, I completely forgot Hou Hsiao-Hsien's work...

Thanks a lot and keep 'em coming!

As for the suggestions I'm taking out :

- Rebels, as I don't feel is as good as the two others (which are already there).

Disco Volante
08-03-2003, 02:13 PM
lol - I'm just having fun with ya. Got you all uptight, though. :D

:rant: :rant:

Should be there (for sure):

Hoop Dreams
Farewell, my Concubine
Secrets and Lies
Doube Life of Veronique

- There is no good justification for keeping Hoop Dreams out of the list. It's a magnifiscent picture which is like a slice of life - it applies to millions basketball-playing teenagers (mainly blacks) and captures their lifestyles and desires like no other film I've ever seen. Keeping this film off this list is like leaving a country off a map.

Farewell is already there (I've added it after your first post), Secrets and Lies I already told you my take on...

I'll add Hoop Dreams (only to show you how open-minded and friendly I am ;) ) and Double Life (even tho I don't think it holds up to other Kieslowski's films...

Dr_Chimera*
08-03-2003, 02:15 PM
Hmmm, further proof surrealism is the most misused word ever (I wrote a text about just that, but in french).


I don't think so. You're probably applying that word to painters, like Dali.
Surrealism comes in distinct shapes and sizes. I think it's up to one's perception as to what surrealism means to him/her.

Disco Volante
08-03-2003, 02:16 PM
I don't think so. You're probably applying that word to painters, like Dali.
Surrealism comes in distinct shapes and sizes. I think it's up to one's perception as to what surrealism means to him/her.

Absolutely not, surrealism is an artistic movement. Is cubism whatever you like?

Dr_Chimera*
08-03-2003, 02:20 PM
Absolutely not, surrealism is an artistic movement. Is cubism whatever you like?

I should have been more clear. Surrealistic is the word I'm looking for.

No - it's not solely the movement. It's an art. Check the dictionary - don't argue.

mamettt
08-03-2003, 02:25 PM
For the best of the 90's, here would be my picks.

Tsai Ming Liang's Taipei trilogy: rebels of the neon god, vive lamour, the river.

Simply 3 of the most unforgettable and thought provoking films that you'll see. Deals with modern day dissillusionment, the emotional disconnection brought on by commerialism, and the transition from old taiwain to new taiwan.

Hou Hsiao-Hsien's good men good women, the puppetmaster, goodbye south goodbye north

Hou's works are essentially studies and explorations of taiwanese identity, history, and the effect of taiwan's disconection from the mainland on modern day taiwan. His minimalist style rivals that of japanese master Ozu.

Hou Hsiao-Hsien's flowers of shanghai

The first of Hou's films to be set outside of taiwan, this is perhaps the best film of the 1990's. The film tells the story of 3 different couples inside a shanghai brothel in the 19th century. The film is shot entirely on cande light, and I have yet to see a film as visually stunning. It is truly an emotional experience.

The fifth generation's four films: the blue kite (Tian Zhuangzhuang ), Raise the Red Lantern and To Live (Zhang Yimou), and Farewell my Concubine (Chen Kaige)

There were four important films that came out of China in the 1990's that changed chinese cinema, and our perception of it, forever. The films are directed by the graduates of the so called "fifth generation" of chinese directors to come out of the beijing film academy. Before the fifth generation, most chinese films were government sanctioned propoganda. These films were the culmination of a revival of creative expression in chinese life.

All 3 men lived through and experienced Mao's cultural revolution, and for the exception of Lantern , each film deals with modern chinese history, and it's effect on family, art, culture, etc. Lantern is essentially a film about sexual domination and submission. What is remarkable about these films is the creative and artisitc drive they are filled with. They are bursts of creativity following the long repression of Maoism. Each of these director's later works have never been quite able to equal the creative excitement and artistic drive shown in these films.

Wong Kar-Wai's happy together

Artist fantastique Wong Kar-Wai has a huge international following, and so he should. His visual style is unlike anything you've ever seen- bold, fierce, and coloful. His films bounce with the same energy as classic Godard. Wong's Chunking Express, Fallen Angels, and Ashes of Time are all films that deserve mention when speaking about the best of the 1990's, but happy together is Wong's most accomplished and emotionally complete film.

Krzysztof Kieslowski's Red and Blue

The first and third of Kislowski's Trois Colour Trilogy, these films will stay with you for a long time after you've seen them. The middle of film in the trilogy, white, left something to be desired. Emotionally complex and thought provoking.

Peter Greenways' the pillow book

A film that goes way beyond most viewers expectation of what the film medium should be able to do and say. A meditation on japanese body art, this is an original and daring work.

The Coen Brother's Fargo

Morality and Violence mix with North Dakota culture. Vintage Coen brother humor, and the best of their many criminal comedy plays.

All About My Mother by Pedro Almodovar

Almodovar continues his theme of strong women and the situations they face with this ode to mothers. Almodovar's film is a complete and creatively important film; a far cry from the zany sex comedies he churned out earlier in the decade.

Eric Khoo's Mee Pok Man

The slums of Singapore are illuminated in Khoo's film about a shy meat vendor who falls in love with a prostitute. A film that shows us a world we would otherwise probably never get to see or visit. The ending takes a hitchcockian turn that puts khoo's message about society, life, and our need for love, in crushingly clear terms.

Quentin Tarantino's Pulp Fiction

Say what you will, but there are sections of this film that are so well directed, acted, and written that one wants to hear these characters talk for hours. Overhyped, but still great.

Terrence Malik's the thin red line

The long lost director returns to create a haunting meditation on war and it's effects on combatants. Malik's sense of space, time, distance, and light didn't leave him on his long hiatus, and the thin red line has the supernatural beauty of his other films.

Anyways, there are probably about 10 or 15 more films that should be talked about as the best of the 90's, but that's a good start. PornoHolocaust, Chimera, your thoughts?

Disco Volante
08-03-2003, 02:33 PM
For the best of the 90's, here would be my picks.

Tsai Ming Liang's Taipei trilogy: rebels of the neon god, vive lamour, the river.

Simply 3 of the most unforgettable and thought provoking films that you'll see. Deals with modern day dissillusionment, the emotional disconnection brought on by commerialism, and the transition from old taiwain to new taiwan.

Hou Hsiao-Hsien's good men good women, the puppetmaster, goodbye south goodbye north

Hou's works are essentially studies and explorations of taiwanese identity, history, and the effect of taiwan's disconection from the mainland on modern day taiwan. His minimalist style rivals that of japanese master Ozu.

Hou Hsiao-Hsien's flowers of shanghai

The first of Hou's films to be set outside of taiwan, this is perhaps the best film of the 1990's. The film tells the story of 3 different couples inside a shanghai brothel in the 19th century. The film is shot entirely on cande light, and I have yet to see a film as visually stunning. It is truly an emotional experience.

The fifth generation's four films: the blue kite (Tian Zhuangzhuang ), Raise the Red Lantern and To Live (Zhang Yimou), and Farewell my Concubine (Chen Kaige)

There were four important and great films that came out of China in the 1990's that changed chinese cinema, and our perception of it, forever. The films are directed by the graduates of the so called "fifth generation" of chinese directors to come out of the beijing film academy. Before the fifth generation, most chinese films were government sanctioned propoganda. These films were the culmination of a revival of creative expression in chinese film.

All 3 men lived through and experienced Mao's cultural revolution, and for the exception of Lantern , each film deals with modern chinese history, and it's effect on the family, art, culture, etc. Lantern is essentially a film about sexual domination and submission. What is remarkable about these films is the creative and artisitc drive they are filled with. They are bursts of creativity following the long repression of Maoism. Each director has never been quite able to equal the creative excitement and artistic drive shown in these films.

Wong Kar-Wai's happy together

Artist fantastique Wong Kar-Wai has a huge international following, and so he should. His visual style is unlike anything you've ever seen- bold, fierce, and coloful. His films bounce with the same energy as classic Godard. Wong's Chunking Express, Fallen Angels, and Ashes of Time are all films that deserve mention when speaking about the best of the 1990's, but happy together is Wong's most accomplished and emotionally complete film.

Krzysztof Kieslowski's Red and Blue

The first and third of Kislowski's Trois Colour Trilogy, these films will stay with you for a long time after you've seen them. The middle of film in the trilogy, white, left something to be desired. Emotionally complex and thought provoking.

Peter Greenways' the pillow book

A film that goes way beyond most viewers expectation of what the film medium should be able to do and say. A meditation on japanese body art, this is an original and daring work.

The Coen Brother's Fargo

Morality and Violence mix with North Dakota culture. Vintage Coen brother humor, and the best of their many criminal comedy plays.

All About My Mother by Pedro Almodovar

Almodovar's continues his themes of strong women and the situations they face wit this ode to mothers. Almodovar's film is a complete and creatively important film; a far cry from the zany sex comedies he churned out earlier in the decade.

Eric Khoo's Mee Pok Man

The slums of Singapore are illuminated in Khoo's film about a shy meat vendor who falls in love with a prostitute. A film that shows us a world we would otherwise probably never get to see or visit.

Quentin Tarantino's Pulp Fiction

Say what you will, but there are sections of this film that are so well directed, acted, and written that one wants to hear these characters talk for hours. Overhyped, but still great.

Terrence Malik's the thin red line

The long lost director returns to create a haunting meditation on war and it's effects on combatants. Malik's sense of space, time, distance, and light didn't leave him on his long hiatus, and the thin red line has the supernatural beauty of his other films.

Anyways, there are probably about 10 or 15 more films that should be talked about as the best of the 90's, but that's a good start. PornoHolocaust, your thoughts?


Of your picks I've added : the Hou Hsiao-Hsien(s), the blue kite, Raise the Red Lantern (I already talked about adding it previously - I'll add To Live too) and Ashes of time.

Were already there : Vive l'amour, The River, Farewell, Happy Toguether, Chungking Express, Red, Blue, The Pillow Book, All about my mother and Pulp Fiction.

Great selections, you seem to be an expert in east-asian films and you are welcome in my thread ;)

As for Mee Pok Man, are you kidding me? I hated it!! :)

Disco Volante
08-03-2003, 02:41 PM
I should have been more clear. Surrealistic is the word I'm looking for.

No - it's not solely the movement. It's an art. Check the dictionary - don't argue.

I'll argue that in my dictionary I have :

Mouvement littéraire et artistique né en France au lendemain de la blablabla.....

and nothing about an artform that would be "surrealism", but what is it made of? Is it more like dancing or painting? I don't know of that "art".

But I won't argue with you on surrealism, read Les surréalistes et le cinéma by Alain and Odette Virmaux (don't know if there is a translation in english, but it contains everything you need to know about surrealism and film).

mamettt
08-03-2003, 03:02 PM
As for Mee Pok Man, are you kidding me? I hated it!!

LOL. Really? I though it was great. It's a film that's more intricate and deep than what it would suggest at the outset. It's really a film that's an unflinching look at Singaporian squalor, and how that world affects the lonely, social misfit noodle vendor and the prostitue he falls in love with. Khoo's finds a warmth in the mee pok man, yet the perversity of the world is never far from the camera. I read the film like this: the mee pok man's perverse relationship with the hooker is Khoo's commentary on a society that is unable to create healthy relationships. Every relationship in the film is tainted, based on getting something from a person for nothing. Ex: The mee pok man is needled for loans; the hooker give sex to her pimp; the hooker wants a way out and looks to the photographer; the photographer uses the hooker for sex. The film's perverse love story shows us the desolation that lies just beneath the clean, welathy singapore we see on tv.

I loved the surreal, hazy ending of the film, I loved the way Khoo shows us the hooker's thoughts through the voice over when her brother is reading her diary, and I loved the performances, especially the mee pok man's ( Joe Ng) final, disturbing monologue to the hooker. It's a film that stays with you a long time.

Singapore is an incredibly repressive society, and Khoo has made a film that illuminates that world like a thunderbolt, jolting it with his artistic vision and abililty. He's a young director with a lot of skill and talent, and this film is one that anyone who wants a complete scence of great 1990's cinema has to see. Anyway, here's a link to a couple of reviews of the film that deal with the film far more eloquently that I could.

http://www.zhaowei.com/mpmrev.htm

Disco Volante
08-03-2003, 03:20 PM
LOL. Really? I though it was great. It's a film that's more intricate and deep than what it would suggest at the outset. It's really a film that's an unflinching look at Singaporian squalor, and how that world affects the lonely, social misfit noodle vendor and the prostitue he falls in love with. Khoo's finds a warmth in the mee pok man, yet the perversity of the world is never far from the camera. I read the film like this: the mee pok man's perverse relationship with the hooker is Khoo's commentary on a society that is unable to create healthy relationships. Every relationship in the film is tainted, based on getting something from a person for nothing. Ex: The mee pok man is needled for loans; the hooker give sex to her pimp; the hooker wants a way out and looks to the photographer; the photographer uses the hooker for sex. The film's perverse love story shows us the desolation that lies just beneath the clean, welathy singapore we see on tv.

I loved the surreal, hazy ending of the film, I loved the way Khoo shows us the hooker's thoughts through the voice over when her brother is reading her diary, and I loved the performances, especially the mee pok man's ( Joe Ng) final, disturbing monologue to the hooker. It's a film that stays with you a long time.

Singapore is an incredibly repressive society, and Khoo has made a film that illuminates that world like a thunderbolt, jolting it with his artistic vision and abililty. He's a young director with a lot of skill and talent, and this film is one that anyone who wants a complete scence of great 1990's cinema has to see. Anyway, here's a link to a couple of reviews of the film that deal with the film far more eloquently that I could.

http://www.zhaowei.com/mpmrev.htm

I'll mark your words, maybe read those reviews later (don't really like to read them) and I'll try to see it again some time - but I still refuse to put it in this list for now! :p

Are you asian? Or did you study this cinema in particular?

Dr_Chimera*
08-03-2003, 06:46 PM
I'll argue that in my dictionary I have :

Mouvement littéraire et artistique né en France au lendemain de la blablabla.....

and nothing about an artform that would be "surrealism", but what is it made of? Is it more like dancing or painting? I don't know of that "art".


So - it's a movement but not an art? There has to be something that defines the art during this particular period shouldn't there?
There are definitely two definitions - the movement and the art itself which was inspired by the movement.
But I see where you're going. Thanks for the reading source.

Brownies
08-03-2003, 06:54 PM
Hmmm, further proof surrealism is the most misused word ever (I wrote a text about just that, but in french).



I stated it before, Eyes Wide Shut is my favorite Kubrick film and the one I think is the best. You can read this (http://www.plume-noire.com/movies/reviews/eyeswideshut.html) (but don't mind the syntax and spelling - if you read french I'll give you a better link) for a summarization of my take on the film.

I thought of adding La vie est belle, maybe I will, I'll rethink it now that I have a "vote" for it. And get me more propositions! :)

:teach: . o O ( wide wisdom?! gee I wonder if tha boy was sarcastic )

Sarcastic or not ??? THAT is the question ;) . Probably 50/50.

Brownies
08-03-2003, 07:06 PM
Hmmm, further proof surrealism is the most misused word ever (I wrote a text about just that, but in french).



I stated it before, Eyes Wide Shut is my favorite Kubrick film and the one I think is the best. You can read this (http://www.plume-noire.com/movies/reviews/eyeswideshut.html) (but don't mind the syntax and spelling - if you read french I'll give you a better link) for a summarization of my take on the film.

I thought of adding La vie est belle, maybe I will, I'll rethink it now that I have a "vote" for it. And get me more propositions! :)

:teach: . o O ( wide wisdom?! gee I wonder if tha boy was sarcastic )

Thanks for the link. Really interresting. It makes me want to see it as soon as possible.

Disco Volante
08-03-2003, 07:57 PM
Thanks for the link. Really interresting. It makes me want to see it as soon as possible.

Well thanks for the "really interesting" comment. Like I said it's incomplete - only my thoughts as they were two days after the film hit the screens, it should be re-written some day to complete it, I don't really like writing under pressure, but I had given my word I'd do it.

As for the "wise wisdom" comment, I'll put it in the "pretentious snob" box for the moment ;)

So - it's a movement but not an art? There has to be something that defines the art during this particular period shouldn't there?
There are definitely two definitions - the movement and the art itself which was inspired by the movement.
But I see where you're going. Thanks for the reading source.

Yeah there sure is surrealist artworks, not many films still... But these works inscribe into the movement and aren't only "dreamy" figures or "subconscious-driven" pieces. Or worse, the equation strange=surrealist...

Here's (http://www.artifice.qc.ca/dossierarchives/18.htm) the text I mentionned, I don't know how it would look if passed thru a translator, but it summarize pretty much the crossroads of surrealism and film (the point 3 should be the most interesting to you).

teme
08-03-2003, 10:34 PM
Sorry Porno, but I've seen about half of the films on your list and of those only one I agree on as being something to rave about is La cité des enfants perdus, stunning film. (Do not, I repeat do not watch it on TV, it just doesn't work.) And there are some on it I found dreadful. Crash? One idea, sex and death, and very little is made out of it. Romance X? In its genre it is not original, it is rather juvenile actually and porno is boring. Oh and I literally fell a sleep (in a theatre) while watching Blue, but we shouldn't hold that against Kieslowski. Seriously, he was a better documentary maker IMO.

When I think of a great film I think Chaplin, Welles, Fellini... Apocalypse Now, Casablanca, One Flew Over Cuckoos Nest... There were lot of good films released in 90's like Pulp Fiction but nothing that spectacular.

But still, my own list of few films that impressed me.

Mainstream:
- the script of Usual Suspects was just so damn clever it was hard not to like (if you think it all makes sense in the end consider for starters that there is a ship full of Hungarian sailors???)
- American Beauty, compared to Magnolia and Happiness that came around at the same time its subtleness set it apart. I remember debating at the time why he didn't **** the teen princess at the end, others insisted it was because he realized she was just a child, but I insisted it was because he was beyond the lust that set things in motion. One way or another, lot deeper film than it is given credit for. Never really thought of it, but I guess I am a Kevin Spacey fan.

American Indie:
- Fargo, not great but very good. Acting in particular is fine.
- Reservoir Dogs. Interesting film, that the robbery is never known shown is a nice little detail.

European:
- Together (Tillsammans) by Lukas Moodyson is a wonderful film about basic human dilemma of not being happy alone and uncontent with others. Some dislike because it has happy ending, which is about the most stupid excuse for dismissing a film I've ever heard.
- Aki Kaurismäki's Driftin Clouds (Kauas Pilvet Karkaavat) is his best IMO. As Kaurismäki put it, Cinema is very simple: You're cold, you're hungry, you find shelter and food. Chaplin understood it, Kaurismäki understands it. Kati Outinen is once again superb as a jobless waitress. More acclaimed Man Without Past (Mies ilman menneisyyttä) dealing with homelessness is the second part of yet to ne finisher trilogy. Kaurismäki also made Juha, a silent black and white film which was interesting.

And couple obscure choices
- Lot of films made in recent years by female directors about female sexuality and the one I liked best was Mary Jane's Not a Virgin Anymore. Director Susan Jacobson shows just how akward and plain silly sex is especially for a teenager. Fun, and I really wished I had seen this a teenager. Check IMDB for comments that are sharply for or against http://us.imdb.com/Details?0117001
- My Sex Life... Or How I Got Into an Argument (Comment je me suis disputé... (ma vie sexuelle)) Think of Clerks set in the circles of young of Parisian intellectual wannabes. Every cliche of the trade made fun of, the star philosopher character with hideous design suite and office talking profound nonsense for example is bang on target. Recognized bits of myself and friends, which for me is rare, and thus throughly enjoyed this three hour film. Another one on which poster on IMDB can not agree on http://us.imdb.com/Details?0115928


teme

Disco Volante
08-03-2003, 11:15 PM
Sorry Porno, but I've seen about half of the films on your list and of those only one I agree on as being something to rave about is La cité des enfants perdus, stunning film. (Do not, I repeat do not watch it on TV, it just doesn't work.) And there are some on it I found dreadful. Crash? One idea, sex and death, and very little is made out of it. Romance X? In its genre it is not original, it is rather juvenile actually and porno is boring. Oh and I literally fell a sleep (in a theatre) while watching Blue, but we shouldn't hold that against Kieslowski. Seriously, he was a better documentary maker IMO.

When I think of a great film I think Chaplin, Welles, Fellini... Apocalypse Now, Casablanca, One Flew Over Cuckoos Nest... There were lot of good films released in 90's like Pulp Fiction but nothing that spectacular.

But still, my own list of few films that impressed me.

Mainstream:
- the script of Usual Suspects was just so damn clever it was hard not to like (if you think it all makes sense in the end consider for starters that there is a ship full of Hungarian sailors???)
- American Beauty, compared to Magnolia and Happiness that came around at the same time its subtleness set it apart. I remember debating at the time why he didn't **** the teen princess at the end, others insisted it was because he realized she was just a child, but I insisted it was because he was beyond the lust that set things in motion. One way or another, lot deeper film than it is given credit for. Never really thought of it, but I guess I am a Kevin Spacey fan.

American Indie:
- Fargo, not great but very good. Acting in particular is fine.
- Reservoir Dogs. Interesting film, that the robbery is never known shown is a nice little detail.

European:
- Together (Tillsammans) by Lukas Moodyson is a wonderful film about basic human dilemma of not being happy alone and uncontent with others. Some dislike because it has happy ending, which is about the most stupid excuse for dismissing a film I've ever heard.
- Aki Kaurismäki's Driftin Clouds (Kauas Pilvet Karkaavat) is his best IMO. As Kaurismäki put it, Cinema is very simple: You're cold, you're hungry, you find shelter and food. Chaplin understood it, Kaurismäki understands it. Kati Outinen is once again superb as a jobless waitress. More acclaimed Man Without Past (Mies ilman menneisyyttä) dealing with homelessness is the second part of yet to ne finisher trilogy. Kaurismäki also made Juha, a silent black and white film which was interesting.

And couple obscure choices
- Lot of films made in recent years by female directors about female sexuality and the one I liked best was Mary Jane's Not a Virgin Anymore. Director Susan Jacobson shows just how akward and plain silly sex is especially for a teenager. Fun, and I really wished I had seen this a teenager. Check IMDB for comments that are sharply for or against http://us.imdb.com/Details?0117001
- My Sex Life... Or How I Got Into an Argument (Comment je me suis disputé... (ma vie sexuelle)) Think of Clerks set in the circles of young of Parisian intellectual wannabes. Every cliche of the trade made fun of, the star philosopher character with hideous design suite and office talking profound nonsense for example is bang on target. Recognized bits of myself and friends, which for me is rare, and thus throughly enjoyed this three hour film. Another one on which poster on IMDB can not agree on http://us.imdb.com/Details?0115928


teme

Well thanks for your propositions, some very interesting ones and many I haven't seen and will put "pending". It's obvious I don't agree with you on most of your comments, but that's part of the fun of it (but for one thing, if you sincerily think City of the Lost Children is the best film of that list, you should think of seeing again the others).

Here's a link (http://www.artifice.qc.ca/dossierarchives/08.htm) for my take on Romance (sorry, in French) - and as for "porno being boring" : 1) it isn't porno and 2) porno is a genre like many others, ok the destituted cousin, but not without any stand-outs. As for Crash, you can read my discussion with Chimera on this thread.

As for the suggestions themselves, here's my take and which ones are in and out of "the list" :

Usual Suspect - good genre film, doesn't take enough risks to be really challenging the schemes (out)

American Beauty - genre film born out of a fashion trend, entertaining, I guess it's intelligent enough to be considered (limit, I'll consider it)

Fargo - as you say yourself, not great (out)

Reservoir Dogs - ask Mike White :)

Together - nice pleasant little film, much too simple and technically somewhat common (out)

Drifting Clouds - Haven't seen it (pending)

Juha - haven't seen it yet, got a copy just this week (pending)

Mary Jane's Not a Virgin Anymore - Haven't seen it, seems interesting (pending)

Comment je me suis disputé... (ma vie sexuelle) - excellent choice! (in)


And hey, don't be sorry, every comment is more than welcome - I was hoping I'd get a few film buff to reveal theirselves with this list and so far it's doing great. So thanks a lot for taking the time to comment and keep 'em coming!

teme
08-04-2003, 01:09 AM
Thanks, but I don't consider myself a movie buff. Movie buffs I know tend to be visually orientated and I'm more into drama, literature and philosophy and as such more interested in ideas, stories and characters.

My French is horrible, I can barely order a meal and a mini-essay is beyond me. IMO, Romance X does feel like a porn movie a lot, thematicly it really is not that different from some of X rated films with actual stories they used to make. The lead character has a general bent towards submission, which is not really explained, displayed or analyzed in any interesting matter (at all actually). Her pathetic model boyfriend is just a prop, actually the only remotely interesting character is her older mentor. If I want to be charitable, I could consider it as a parody of porn with the mechanics of sex extended to human relationships, but there is so much more that could be made out of this theme then there is in the film. I'd love to hear what you find interesting about it though.

It's been so long since I watched Crash that the only thing I clearly remember is that I had significant trouble keeping my interest through the film, so I'll shut up on that.

Agreed, Together is simply told but keeping things simple is an art at itself (think Chaplin.) The story is very good and Moodyson has enough confidence in it not to obfuscate needlessly. And the point and the characters are anything but simple, for instance the notorious happy ending. I don't think everything is by any means OK at the end, there is just a brief period of calm. Has the couple really resolved their differences? Has the commune? Can they sustain a lifestyle like that?

From your list, I've been meaning to watch Delicatessen for ages. Latest Kurosowa I saw was Rai, I think I should check out the newer ones.

Like I said, I can't think of a single great film made in 90's but couple other really good ones come to mind now that I write this:
- Nikita (1990 :-), action films were never the same after. Just an elegant film.
- Almodovar's All About My Mother, actually could be the film of the decade.
- Another great Spanish film is Nobody Will Speak of Us When We're Dead with Victoria Abril. OK, anything with Abril is good but she is at her best in this one (nevermind incredibly hot.)
- It's not that good, but still Natural Born Killers ought to be mentioned.

And finally, the most disappointing film of the decade was for me Starship Troopers. It sounded so good, an Orwellian satire of a fascist Earth on war with Aliens. I was thinking Leni Riesenthal effect: these guys look great, I'm cheering for them, and they are Nazis... er wait. The actual film was about the most hideous undervaluation of audiences capacity to understand satire and I was cheering for the aliens about 30 secs into the film. Such waste.

Triple Klutz
08-04-2003, 07:40 AM
I don't see American Movie on anybody's list. Am I the only one who thought that was as good a documentary as Crumb or Hoop Dreams?

Dr_Chimera*
08-04-2003, 08:31 AM
Well thanks for the "really interesting" comment. Like I said it's incomplete - only my thoughts as they were two days after the film hit the screens, it should be re-written some day to complete it, I don't really like writing under pressure, but I had given my word I'd do it.

As for the "wise wisdom" comment, I'll put it in the "pretentious snob" box for the moment ;)



Yeah there sure is surrealist artworks, not many films still... But these works inscribe into the movement and aren't only "dreamy" figures or "subconscious-driven" pieces. Or worse, the equation strange=surrealist...

Here's (http://www.artifice.qc.ca/dossierarchives/18.htm) the text I mentionned, I don't know how it would look if passed thru a translator, but it summarize pretty much the crossroads of surrealism and film (the point 3 should be the most interesting to you).

Thanks. I can read French, btw.:)

Puck
08-04-2003, 10:05 AM
A few weeks ago (before the crash), in a previous artistic quest, Porno mentioned Arman's violin. If he likes the instrument so much, then may I also suggest Le Violon Rouge by François Girard.

p.s. if this ends up as an article, the boys at HF fully expect a credit for our research Monsieur Porno. ;)

Disco Volante
08-04-2003, 11:16 AM
Thanks, but I don't consider myself a movie buff. Movie buffs I know tend to be visually orientated and I'm more into drama, literature and philosophy and as such more interested in ideas, stories and characters.

Bah, film buff only is a stupid term pointing at people that are "into" movies. It seems to me you are. Maybe cinéphile would be less pejorative... A problem with lots of viewers is that they're looking for literary qualities in films - it is terribly restrictive IMO.

My French is horrible, I can barely order a meal and a mini-essay is beyond me. IMO, Romance X does feel like a porn movie a lot, thematicly it really is not that different from some of X rated films with actual stories they used to make. The lead character has a general bent towards submission, which is not really explained, displayed or analyzed in any interesting matter (at all actually). Her pathetic model boyfriend is just a prop, actually the only remotely interesting character is her older mentor. If I want to be charitable, I could consider it as a parody of porn with the mechanics of sex extended to human relationships, but there is so much more that could be made out of this theme then there is in the film. I'd love to hear what you find interesting about it though.

Your impressions about the film are very coherent and interesting (the old mentor being the only interesting character - the "parody feeling"), it's signifiant with the text I wrote about it (the parodied figure not being porn but the representation of women in commercial film works - the dichotomy virgin/***** being transposed into the male characters Paul/Paolo). I'll try to pass it thru a translator and send it to you, it will be ugly but it's the best I can do - it's really too long for me to translate.

It's been so long since I watched Crash that the only thing I clearly remember is that I had significant trouble keeping my interest through the film, so I'll shut up on that.

It's certainly not an easy movie. It didn't bore me at all, but even so, I'm attached to Ruiz's formula "boredom is an art that's getting lost in films". I can appreciate that a film bores me, if it's efficiently done. I think easy-entertainement, humour, scares and dizzyness are overrated and lots of viewers (I'm not talking about you, if you're into philosophical elements of films, you must love a lot of non-entertaining films) have restricted their cinematographic emotional expectations to only that, alienating theirselves from infinite other possibilities, of which boredom is one. But I found Crash significant and thought-provoking, only it's a (great) film and you musn't only look for meaning into the plain story - the treatment is here the most important (the story exists anyway without the film in the book, which would be a nice companion to someone who'd want to appreciate Crash).

Agreed, Together is simply told but keeping things simple is an art at itself (think Chaplin.) The story is very good and Moodyson has enough confidence in it not to obfuscate needlessly. And the point and the characters are anything but simple, for instance the notorious happy ending. I don't think everything is by any means OK at the end, there is just a brief period of calm. Has the couple really resolved their differences? Has the commune? Can they sustain a lifestyle like that?

That's what I was referring to at the beginning, Together has a nice interesting linear story - that makes for a good little film that's pleasant to watch, but not for a great cinematographic work. Chaplin was a great director, his cinematographic language was far more elaborated than most of his contemporaries and he's one of the really few cineasts that got to successfully adapt from silent film to sonorous film. Keeping things simple is an art in itself, I'd agree with you, it requires a lot more skills as a cineast to keep the rythm in a slow-paced work - but those who excelled at it also had a distinctive signature (Kieslowski, Antonioni, Kiarostami, Makhmalbaf - father and daughter - and such).

From your list, I've been meaning to watch Delicatessen for ages. Latest Kurosowa I saw was Rai, I think I should check out the newer ones.

Delicatessen is IMO a lot better than City of the Lost Children, still it isn't really at the level of the films in the upper-portion of the list. Yume is an interesting display of what Kurosawa could have done with greater means. It loses a little from it's heavy moralist tone, but it still a beautiful and meaningful collection of tales (of "dreams").

Like I said, I can't think of a single great film made in 90's but couple other really good ones come to mind now that I write this:

In my views, that's a problem and you're not alone with it. I don't think a film needs to age to be great. Lots of people will only accept "classics" as great films, it doesn't really make any sense. I suppose you only need a little detachment to take the time to see where a particular work inscribes itself in the spectre of cinema - a little of that and a little open-mindedness (which I don't doubt you have) and you're set. :)

As for the selections :

- Nikita : Rather common genre films that doesn't stretch the genre enough to be considered IMO - maybe you can make a case for it.

- Almodovar's All About My Mother : already in the list, but really far from being the film of the decade IMO. I actually prefered Almodovar's Kika.

- Nobody Will Speak of Us When We're Dead : I haven't seen it, I'll put it pending.

- Natural Born Killers : one Tarantino-related film in that list is more than enough ;)

As for Starship Troopers, well, like everything Verhoeven has done since he's in the States, it sucks.

Disco Volante
08-04-2003, 11:21 AM
I don't see American Movie on anybody's list. Am I the only one who thought that was as good a documentary as Crumb or Hoop Dreams?

Actually it's a rather good selection. I'll put it with American Beauty in the "I'll consider" list.

Thanks. I can read French, btw.:)

:bow:

You don't know how much respect I have for you, and even tho we don't agree on lots of subjects, this respect just keeps on increasing.

A few weeks ago (before the crash), in a previous artistic quest, Porno mentioned Arman's violin. If he likes the instrument so much, then may I also suggest Le Violon Rouge by François Girard.

p.s. if this ends up as an article, the boys at HF fully expect a credit for our research Monsieur Porno. ;)

Good selection, I'll put it too in the "I'll consider" list. I'm not really a fan of "historic" pieces so I'll try not to be influenced by my bias.

As for this list, no it's not for an article, only for the sake of discussion. But the other violon would have been - I'm still looking for it... :mad:

Disco Volante
08-04-2003, 11:27 AM
I've added La vie rêvée des anges

Puck
08-04-2003, 02:10 PM
Wo de fu qin mu qin (1999) (Chinese)
by Yimou Zhang

also know as 'My Father and Mother' or yet another 'The Road Home'.

Very simple low-budget film that somehow pulls at the right strings. Along the lines of a 'Manon des Sources' or 'Maria Chapdelaine' but it's done more simply and without the twists. The Director succeeds in telling a simple story, wonderfully. Interesting use of color and b&w.

Just saw it recently, thought I'd check it out and it squeezes in at 1999, if you are just looking for the eclectic.

Someone told me it won the audience award at Sundance but I couldn't find it there so they must have been mistaken.

Vladi K
11-26-2003, 09:19 AM
Crash is a brilliant film as far as aesthetics and thought-provocation are concerned, in fact I don't see a single weakness in that film. Vladi K can hate it cause it's infidel to a book he loves, he'd be in part right about it, but it doesn't take anything from the movie itself.

Darn, I just remembered about this... so decided that I should respond. I agree with you, it does not take anything from the movie itself, but IMHO there was not much to take from the movie. I believe that I am able to see films with an open mind and detach myself from the rest, attempting to enjoy and appreciate a film for what it is. I tried that with Crash, detaching myself from the book, while I watch the movie and I did not find it thought provoking, at least no where near the level that the book did.

Also, you mentioned earlier in this thread that it was "original." How can an adaptation be original??

Disco Volante
11-26-2003, 11:22 AM
How can an adaptation be original??

I don't post in the lounge anymore, only in Dempsey's thread and that's temporary ;)

For your question, see Naked Lunch, see most of Kubrick's films, etc. A novel isnt cinematic in itself (tho some are in part modeled over a filmic pattern - see Bukowski) and the film resulting from the adaptation can be as original as the one with an "original screenplay" (which are often, in the case of genre films for example, imitations in themselves).

Vladi K
11-26-2003, 09:17 PM
I don't post in the lounge anymore, only in Dempsey's thread and that's temporary ;)

I enjoy your posts, so I hope you'll reply here again :))

For your question, see Naked Lunch, see most of Kubrick's films, etc. A novel isnt cinematic in itself (tho some are in part modeled over a filmic pattern - see Bukowski) and the film resulting from the adaptation can be as original as the one with an "original screenplay" (which are often, in the case of genre films for example, imitations in themselves).

A good novel should be cinematic. Perhaps not in the true meaning of the word, but in the imagery that it invokes in a reader. Though it is a very questionable statement. However, IMHO there is only one original idea, that's the one in the novel. One can slap "original screenplay" as much and as often as s/he wishes, that does not change the fact that all that person is doing is recycling someone else's idea, story, basically giving his/her own spin on the words and images in the original novel. An adaptation could be awesome (for instance as much as I like Palahnuik, I liked the movie more than the book) but I would argue till the die I die, that it is not original. I guess it is a difference of opinion that can't be simply resolved, if ever.. but if you are willing... :))

Disco Volante
11-26-2003, 10:50 PM
I enjoy your posts, so I hope you'll reply here again :))



A good novel should be cinematic. Perhaps not in the true meaning of the word, but in the imagery that it invokes in a reader. Though it is a very questionable statement. However, IMHO there is only one original idea, that's the one in the novel. One can slap "original screenplay" as much and as often as s/he wishes, that does not change the fact that all that person is doing is recycling someone else's idea, story, basically giving his/her own spin on the words and images in the original novel. An adaptation could be awesome (for instance as much as I like Palahnuik, I liked the movie more than the book) but I would argue till the die I die, that it is not original. I guess it is a difference of opinion that can't be simply resolved, if ever.. but if you are willing... :))

In fact it's pretty easy : you take "original" as in "first material" and I take it as in "peculiar". Let's take an example I specially love. Le temps retrouvé isn't the original Le temps retrouvé in a meta-narrative sense, that is sure right - there is a source. But the narrative techniques and structure and play on visuals sure ain't nowhere to be seen in Proust (in fact, nowhere else unless in an inferior stage in previous Raoul Ruiz films), and thus are, for me, orgininal.

The adaptation has little to do with the book and Ruiz succeeds at adapting Proust (where many had failed, Proust being tagged as "unadapable") because he transfers the proustian time-stretching in visual tricks and by telling a story that isn't Le temps retrouvé but that figures it.

I'll agree with you that a film like Silence of the Lambs has nothing original since it follows the narrative structure of the book and uses its mecanism (tho I don't remember if the police squad ringing at wrong house parrallel editing trick was in the book - it could be, while Ruiz tricks just couldn't). Crash and Naked Lunch sit somewhere in between those examples, a lot more on Ruiz side IMO, especially Naked Lunch.

The problem is the story isn't the film. Film isn't literature. And a great film doesn't need a great story - the filmicité isn't literary, and doesn't equals to the mental image a book creates.

Cloudigger
11-26-2003, 11:28 PM
The problem is the story isn't the film. Film isn't literature. And a great film doesn't need a great story - the filmicité isn't literary, and doesn't equals to the mental image a book creates.

:handclap: had to say I agree

Disco Volante
11-27-2003, 01:11 PM
:handclap: had to say I agree

I guess your interest in editing and film spaciality and temporality makes you biaised in this regard ;)

dempsey_k*
01-09-2004, 05:16 AM
what about these selections ?

The Straight Story - David Lynch
Beyond the Clouds - Michelangelo Antonioni
The Ninth Gate - Roman Polanski
The Thin Red Line - Terrance Malick

Disco Volante
01-09-2004, 08:27 AM
what about these selections ?

The Straight Story - David Lynch
Beyond the Clouds - Michelangelo Antonioni
The Ninth Gate - Roman Polanski
The Thin Red Line - Terrance Malick

Man this new avatar of yours looks like mine, but crappy. :p

The Straight Story - David Lynch - haven't seen it yet ( :blush: ), but I have doubts, could add it as pending
Beyond the Clouds - Michelangelo Antonioni - not worthy IMO, could add it but I'd feel bad seeing it there (not that I think anybody still consult that list tho)
The Ninth Gate - Roman Polanski - really not worthy
The Thin Red Line - Terrance Malick - not on MY list!! ;)

But thanks for the propositions, and for reviving this thread.

dempsey_k*
01-09-2004, 09:09 AM
Man this new avatar of yours looks like mine, but crappy. :p

It's JFont's new "HFboards WoW" campaign, to enlighten people onto the nicer side of Hockey's Future and their Ministry of the Interior.

The Straight Story - David Lynch - haven't seen it yet ( :blush: ), but I have doubts, could add it as pending
Beyond the Clouds - Michelangelo Antonioni - not worthy IMO, could add it but I'd feel bad seeing it there (not that I think anybody still consult that list tho)

I Just threw Beyond the Clouds in there because it was a rather nice ode to Antonioni's career. It wasn't bad in the least but nothing outstanding like the implications and language of Blowup or L'Avventura. The cast was fun too.

The Ninth Gate - Roman Polanski - really not worthy

I found it to be incredible myself, what do you dislike about it ?

The Thin Red Line - Terrance Malick - not on MY list!! ;)

Indeed, if you ever get around to checking it out a second time, tell me your thoughts. I was oblivious to even the concept of film as art when I first saw it, so it had the chance to grow on me, I'm not sure if people 'already in the game' went through the same deal. Also, clear out your PM box, you dolt.

Disco Volante
01-09-2004, 09:21 AM
Also, clear out your PM box, you dolt.

Oh. I was like :dunno: . o O ( why do I have to clear that stupid box every three days?!! ) but I just realized it stores your sent messages and that I had 96 saved so only place for 3 new messages... :lol:

I hope Clouddigger didn't try to write me (if you did, my apologies, it should be ok now!)

As for Polanski's film, I simply thought it was a banal genre movie. But maybe I missed something.