La Grande Bouffe [1973]

poster at wikipedia

We saw this French oldie two days ago and I loved it.
This film is dark, funny, sad, grotesque, caricatural, over the top, and very, very different from today’s blockbusters. A real treat!
(Thank you M. For the recommendation.)

From the wikipedia page:
The film tells the story of four friends who gather in a villa for the weekend with the express purpose of eating themselves to death. Bouffer is French slang for “excessive eating”. (the Italian abbuffata means “great eating”).

Rotten Tomatoes’ audience gives it an 84%.
La Grande Bouffe at Wikipedia

Trailer (in German because I couldn’t find one in English or the original French):

The Wrestler [2008]

The Wrestler

Brutal and honest, The Wrestler is a film that gives you a glimpse into the life of an ageing wrestling champion from the eighties that continues his career way beyond his prime.
It got 98% in Rotten Tomatoes and this time I have to agree with the hive mind. Brilliant, stupendous film!
Everything is right with it: the writing, the actors, the lighting, the colours, the sounds, the way it progresses. It is entertaining even though some of the scenes are excruciatingly gruesome.

Shame [2011]

Shame Movie Poster

I heard about Shame from a few different people but never had the opportunity to watch it before now. Telmo and I watched it two nights ago and I was slightly disappointed.
I expected it to be a really heavy movie filled with emotion and drama but what I felt was more on the “it’s okay” category. I suspect if I’ve seen it in any other day I would feel different, so I’m saving my final judgment for when I see it again in another state of mind.

I have a few things to say, though.
I think people should chill out about speaking of this movie as if it’s The Sad Life of a Sex Addict. I don’t think he is a sex addict. I don’t even know if it’s possible to be a sex addict. (Maybe it’s an American thing…) When the human prime directive is to have sex and reproduce, can someone get addicted to a prime directive? Isn’t that exactly what is meant to be? He likes porn, hookers and risk taking (by implicitly having unprotected sex). So? He can afford the hookers and he is an unattached adult so quit it with the finger pointing, people!

He is lonely. He lives in a society that exalts monogamy and relationships as the only acceptable model of reality. As we see in the movie, his MARRIED boss is screwing around. Is his wife okay with that?

The pressure of a relationship, any relationship—as we see in the way he deals with his sister—is too much for him. He isn’t a sex addict, he is just emotional undeveloped.

It’s a pretty movie visually and the writing is good. I just need to watch it when I’m not in a funk.


The Grand Budapest Hotel [2014]

The Grand Budapest Hotel Poster
Saturday we went to the movies and because my brother-in-law mentioned it, I suggested we go see The Grand Budapest Hotel by Wes Anderson.
Wes Anderson is one of those directors that always makes beautiful movies. Unfortunately, they fail to entertain me sometimes. (Didn’t really like Moonrise Kingdom… Meh!)

But The Grand Budapest Hotel was super fun!

I loved the structure of the movie, the writing, the performances, the sets, the colours… Everything really.
Whimsical as always, Wes Anderson delivered a simple story about loyalty and love without being sappy or dull. Quirky and delicious!

Star Trek Into Darkness [2013]

Star Trek Poster Wikipedia

Yeah… I did it again. I went to see a movie and didn’t check if The Monster (aka Lindelof) was writing it. I know… I’m an idiot.

What I hated about the movie:

– The USS Enterprise is to explore strange new worlds, to seek out new life and new civilizations, to boldly go where no man has gone before NOT to go on manhunts;
– No coherent dialogs;
– No purpose;
– No story;
– No ideas;
– The horrible 3D – DOF in 3D, really?

What I liked about the movie but wasn’t enough:

– The brilliant actors;
– The shiny pictures when unspoiled by the horrible 3D.

What I would like to say to JJ Abrams:

– Dude…
– Just keep to original scripts – Cloverfield was okay;
– 3D sucks balls;
– Stop using The Monster;
– Really. Quit that.

I give it one star and it’s all for the actors and the director that made a visual silk purse from a writing sow’s ear.

The Book Of Mormon musical

The Book of Mormon poster

I’m fascinated with religions.
Of all the ones out there, the Mormons (LDS Church) is probably on my top three. I fell head over heals in awe with these guy’s beliefs since the beginning of the amazing HBO series Big Love. I knew about The Church before but I just started research on them after the show premiered in 2006.

When in 2010 I heard the guys from South Park were doing a musical about Mormons I knew I had to see it.

Finally in 2013 they opened a production in London and with a little theatre-ninja-power-voodoo by our friend CC we got tickets and got to see it at the Prince of Wales Theatre last week.

It was F.E.N.O.M.E.N.A.L.!

The writing, the music, the actors, the musicians, the stage, the theatre, the sound. So perfect. I couldn’t stop laughing but then in some parts I almost cried and then laughed again.
They are funny without being offensive (to an agnostic, at least) and I recommend the show to anyone that is able to go see it. It’s worth it!

Here is the opening song sang at the opening of the Tony Awards 2012:

And this is one of the songs of the second half of the show – performed at the Tony Awards 2011:

These are the only videos I could find. The show is a thousand times better than these videos but you get the idea.

Black Swan [2010]

Black Swan poster

I know I’m (very, very) late but I finally watched Black Swan and loved it.

Natalie Portman once again surpasses my expectations.
Brilliant atmosphere and interesting storyline.
Professional ballerinas are fascinating by themselves. Add to that the magnificent Tchaikovsky music, a beautiful cast of girls and a nice story about lack of mental health and this is what you get. A very entertaining and somewhat sad one hour and forty five minutes.

87% on Rotten Tomatoes and worth it.