51. The Son's Room
Giovanni, an Italian psychoanalyst who has to listen to the rambles of his patients every day, struggles to come to terms with the death of his young son in a diving accident.
What Tierna thinks: “I’d definitely recommend watching this; we had put it off a few times as you really need to concentrate more on subtitled films (Lazy? Perhaps!) but I’m glad we finally found time. The acting is very believable in this and the family interact naturally with each other, making the son’s death more poignant. The letter that arrives after the death of Andrea seems to bring some sort of comfort to the family and it ultimately has an uplifting ending. A well deserved eight out of ten from me.”
What Tom thinks: “So its been a while since our last film and our first of 2012 was… alright. It has to be said it’s fairly depressing and, particularly given that its subtitled, not a film I’d be particularly wanting to watch again. But a fairly good film with a believable reaction from the family after Andrea’s death which shows how difficult death can be. A six from me.”
Up next: Lord of the Rings: Return of the King
Volver is a Spanish film about Raimunda, her daughter Paula and her sister Sole. While Raimunda tries tries to deal with the dead body of her husband, who tried to sexually assault Paula, Sole must also figure out how to deal with the apparent resurrection of her dead mother.
What Tierna thinks: “I had watched this before but I enjoyed it more this time around. It was definitely one of the best of our foreign films so far. It’s a typically Spanish film; an element of the after life colliding with the living. The storyline was gripping and often unexpected although some of the story is quite common to many Spanish films I’ve watched. A good film and I’ll give it an eight out of ten.”
What Tom thinks: “We’ve had quite a few slow and boring foreign films on this list (as well as quite a few awesome ones I may add) and this was a prime candidate to be another. Alas, it was not and is a pretty entertaining movie. The story of the mother leaves the viewer guessing through most of the film – is she dead or isn’t she – and all in all it was fairly enjoyable. I’ll give it a seven out of ten.”
Up next: Chopper
Posted in Cannes Film Festival, Oscar Nominated, Palme d'Or, Spanish Film, Uncategorized
Tagged Carmen Maura, Death, La Mancha, Madrid, Murder, Pedro Almodovar, Penelope Cruz, The Flower of my Secret
78. About Schmidt
In the first of two Alexander Payne films on the list (Sideways is no 27), About Schmidt stars Jack Nicholson as a recently retired insurance actuary who embarks on a road trip to attend his daughter’s marriage.
What Tom thinks: “I hadn’t really watched this since the cinema about 7 years ago, and I had forgotten what a good film this is. It’s genuinely an excellent drama (Tierna cried again… that makes three) but is also funny. It’s a great turn from Jack Nicholson too, nothing like his usual charismatic performance, and rightly got him an Oscar nomination. Really good film, I’ll give this an eight out of ten.”
What Tierna thinks: “I still can’t believe Tom’s keeping a ‘cry count’. Harsh! I thought this film was fantastic and Jack Nicholson acted the role excellently. I’d definately recommend watching this as it’s great for a laugh yet tugs on the heart strings as well. I’ll also give this an eight out of ten.”
Posted in Alexander Payne, Comedy, drama, Jack Nicholson, Louis Begley, Oscar Nominated
Tagged Camper van, Death, Marriage, Old, Roadtrip, Waterbeds
99. Battle Royale
Up next is Battle Royale, a Japanese film where school children are put on a island and forced to kill each other until only one remains. That’ll teach them for talking in class!
What Tom thinks: “This is more like it – what’s not to like about out of control kids murdering each other using a variety of different weapons. I already owned this before we watched it, and will give it an eight out of ten.”
What Tierna thinks: “Needless to say, I had never seen this one before. It was a bit too gory for my liking but, credit where credit is due: it kept me glued to the screen (apart from the gruesome bits; I hid behind Tom during these!) A good film all round, but not to my taste; I’d give this a five out of ten.”