Thoughts on Life Itself

A realization has dawned upon me that all the words in English language, or for any language for that matter, fail to express even the minuscule of what one actually feels, for they are nothing but sounds designating concepts and these concepts are more or less frequently recurring and associated group of sensations, basically – just arrant commonness and our emotions happen to be beyond that. Another duly realization is that through incessant use and reuses, the phrase ‘life-changing’ has lost the ability to refer to anything but itself. So when I thought to open this piece of writing with the words ‘Roger Ebert changed my life’, I realized it was an obligation on my part to point out the trappings of language my feelings would be inscrutably confined to. Words cannot possibly let you, my dear friend, to fathom the love and admiration and gratefulness I have towards the man. Yet try the best I must, fully knowing that only failure awaits me at the end of this endeavor, for as Ernest Hemingway once said ‘There is nothing to writing. All you do is sit down and bleed’ and all this bleeding for cinema in this blog would be an exercise in utter futility if not to have bled for the very man who inspired me to start this blog in the first place. So, having made a daft effort to confirm that all the inadequacies you will find in the article set to follow are legit, I conclude this prelude and begin :-

Roger Ebert changed my life. Not how I live it obviously, but rather how I look at it, which I believe is far more important. And having warded off from using hyperbole for some time now for the fear of getting indigestion later from eating my words (which has happened more often than I care to admit), I have made hell sure that this statement holds irrevocably true and I believe it does, for whenceforth I have discovered them, movies have been my life and Ebert has changed how I look at them. I still remember that me from three years ago, teary-eyed, prancing around with a never-before experienced euphoria after just having finished watching Sofia Coppola’s Lost In Translation at two in the morning. That was the first Ebert review I read, and believe me, Roger made sure with it that it wouldn’t be the last. The ending lines of that review were, and I can still quote it from memory ‘Do we need closure? This isn’t a closure kind of movie. We get all we need in simply knowing they share a moment private to them, and seeing that it contains something true before they part forever’. I remember clenching my fists after having read it, trying helplessly to stop the inevitable downpour of tears set to follow at the realization that someone had the exact same experience at that scene where Bob and Charlotte part which I had felt previously was only privy to me.

That’s what made Ebert a band apart. I have come to read multitudinous pieces of film criticisms in my life, with quite a few of them possessing apodictic prosaic beauty. Yet all of them seem to be centered on what is ‘right’ and what it is ‘wrong’ in a movie. Now as important that may be to some, in the bigger picture, I cannot think of something of lesser significance for what is ‘right’ for me may very well be ‘wrong’ for you. It isn’t what the movie is that forms its appeal, but rather what it invokes and no one knew that better than Ebert. Every review of his was like a portal of the sorts found in Spike Jonze’s Being John Malkovich (a movie he so dearly adored) for it lead us straight into his mind, engulfing us in every minute emotion which flooded into his brain while watching the movie.

There was a beautiful sentence with great truth to it that I came across and has stayed with me every since in Micheal Cunningham’s The Hours which said ‘One always has a better book in one’s mind than one can manage to get onto paper’. And when I ponder on that, I wonder what would have that piece Roger wrote for Eternal Sunshine Of The Spotless Mind (in his Great Movies collection) sounded like in his mind ? Whenever I read it, and I do that quite often, it means something different for me every time, yet every time it always means something to me. It is as if he poured his whole heart in it with a child’s breathless disregard of the consequences.

It so often happens that the greatest events and thoughts are comprehended last, the generations which are their contemporaries do not experience such events – they live past them. It is in this respect that Ebert becomes truly epoch making in the literary circle, for in most cases genius turns out to be incommunicable and reluctant, blowing cold on the passerby. Yet, with Ebert, even the very naive was aware of his unparalleled mastery of his craft and lapped it up wholeheartedly.

Film criticism from the heart is like the Penrose stairs. We seem to be eternally damned with the failure to express what we truly feel at the end of a great movie, so we are clueless on where to start or end, ending up rummaging around our ideas, as if separate paragraphs can shed light on each other and form a comprehensive whole. Roger Ebert, an indisputable giant of American letters, came as close as one possibly could to describing the indescribable.

Great artists incite an interest towards appreciating their body of art, while the greatest incite an interest in mastering it. I know of no other who has inspired such a legion to love movies and write about them than Ebert. He was and is and will be, for me and countless others, the greatest of them all and the only rating I can possibly give Life Itself if two thumbs up. The tragedy is that the thumbs are mine, and not Siskel and Ebert’s. The reassurance comes from the fact that all those who love movies do consider it a tragedy.

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Talking Heads Review

The faces are turning older, the clocks are turning back, but Kieslowski’s questions remain the same – ‘Who are you ? What do you want from life?’

Overshadowed by the acclaim of ‘The Colors Trilogy‘ and ‘Dekalog‘, Kieslowski’s most personal work ‘Talking Heads‘ stands out with the same profound nature of Richard Linklater’s Waking Life. It is a breathtaking exploration into the human subconscious, studying in a tentative manner of whether the answers to these profound questions are grounded in their existence solely on the basis of geopolitical factors or current state of living conditions.

Personally, the movie worked as an affirmation for the collective nature of human subconscious in the universal scope for me. Consider however varying the answers of the characters appear, almost all of them seem to be interconnected by an altruistic facet to them, and more over, an upholding of the personal liberty of all others.

Talking Heads is a movie we all aspire to make but not necessarily film, for like Kieslowski, we too are hounded by these very questions and look around instead of within for the answers. It was Carl Jung who I believe once said ‘The sole purpose of human existence is to kindle a light in the darkness of mere being’. Talking Heads is with Shoah, in my opinion, the few mere cases where cinema meets its full potential, where it transcends the mere facade of entertainment, but acts as a personal catharsis for the viewer.

In a run-time of 14 minutes, Kieslowski creates the defining work on the innumerable selves a man dons in a single existence and the evanescent nature of the answers man assumes to be of lifelong permanency. In its very end, the gen hidden within Talking Heads below its multiple interpretations of the nature of human existence seems to be a counsel rather than an answer. Kielslowski seems to be shouting ‘Don’t indulge your precious time in this temporary quests, but rather in the permanent one, which is to live life to the fullest, for it seems towards the end of the road, all that we want from life seems to be more of it.’

RATING :- 9.9 / 10

THANKS FOR READING. IF YOU HAVE LIKED/HAVE DIFFERENT VIEWS / HAVE ANY  DOUBTS, PLEASE SHARE. I WILL RESPOND TO IT AS SOON AS I CAN. AND PLEASE SUBSCRIBE FOR MORE. YOU CAN FOLLOW ME ON MY FACEBOOK PAGE TOO https://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100011549616628 YOU CAN ALSO E-MAIL ME ON castlebang786@gmail.com OR favebook2011@rediffmail.com

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Copyright : All written content on this site, unless otherwise noted, has been created by the website owner. As such, the content is the property of the website owner. This content is protected by Indian and international copyright laws. If you wish to reproduce, re-post, or display any of our content on your own site please only do so if you also provide a link back to the source page on this website and properly attribute authorship. Our preference is that you seek our permission before doing so. If you see anything on this website that has not been properly attributed to its originator please contact me. In response, I will attempt to correct the attribution of the offending material or remove and/or replace it. All material on this website is posted in accordance with the limitations set forward by the Information Technology Act, 2000. If a documented copyright owner so requests, their material will be removed from published display, although the author reserves the right to provide linkage to that material or to a source for that material. As a website devoted to discussing and reviewing movies and television I will at times, for illustrative purposes, present copyrighted material, the use of which might not always be specifically authorized by the copyright owner. Such material is made available  for purposes such as criticism, comment, and research. The website owner believes that this constitutes a “fair use” of any such copyrighted material because the articles published on this website are distributed for entertainment purposes

 

 

 

 

 

 

Shoah Review

Every art form owes its origin to a characteristic so deeply ingrained in the human race, that over the course of history it has proved to be the standpoint among our various attributes which separates us from all other animals – a proclivity to preserve the truth for the future generations, so as to enlighten them on the mistakes of the past generations and how to evade them during the course of their lifetimes. Literature stemmed from Herodotus’ accounts of the brutality of wars and gradually gave form to genres and sub-genres with a voice and style of their own. However, written words failed to emanate certitude, for it had to stand trial against the existence of the boundless imaginative powers of the human race.

But eyes, how can they lie ? The invention of cinema, thus stands out till date as a definitive tool to capture the truth, and freeze it forever. And Shoah, the 9-hour epic by Claude Lanzmann constituting of the interviews of Holocaust survivors, historians and SS officials stands out as the greatest use of cinema in its century and a half long history.

Speaking from a professional and personal front, writing anything about Shoah is an exigent task. How do you review testimonials of the survivors of one of the greatest human tragedies tailored to form a documentary ? In my entire life, there hasn’t been a movie which has impacted me as a human being as Shoah has. As the movie progressed, there were times where I closed my eyes and just listened to the testimonials. There was an appalling truth in the eyes of these survivors which seemed to flash the horrors they were describing. To look eye-to-eye with them was too naked and painful than a human being can bear.

Whenever I review a movie, I often find my responsibility to talk about a movie reminiscent to that of a salesman. I can spend my time praising the product, enticing you to buy it, or talk adversely about, thus discouraging you from buying it. So the question here is how can I sell to you a 9-hour documentary about the Holocaust with only conversations ?

Well, because you as a member of this species are entitled by your moral responsibility to give a damn about the sufferings of others. Shoah maybe a long film, but it definitely isn’t a slow one. The conversations are emotionally harrowing, sometimes even darkly funny and more often than not, intriguing in their nature. I watched this movie over a course of two days. At nights, I was plagued by various visions of death in my dreams. Watching Shoah isn’t a pleasant experience, but it is a rewarding one. Great movies have the power to change the very soul of a human being and no movie better personifies that than Shoah.

The only fallacy, which turns out to be the greatest strength of Shoah the more I think about it, would be the interrogative style Lanzmann adopts with SS officials. Although this method is faulty for it could have lead to clear-cut villains and heroes in this story, it ended up exposing the helplessness of these men as well. The testament which moved me the most was that of a Nazi official towards the end of the movie whose words state explicitly the torment he had in coming in terms with violence unfolding around him. Imagine the guilt of surviving a hell when everyone who you loved didn’t. Now imagine living through the fact that although you couldn’t do single damn thing about it, you too will stand out in history as a perpetrator of the greatest tragedy in human history.

That is what this extraordinary movie seems to say. ‘No one survived the Holocaust’.

RATING :- 10 / 10

THANKS FOR READING. IF YOU HAVE LIKED/HAVE DIFFERENT VIEWS / HAVE ANY  DOUBTS, PLEASE SHARE. I WILL RESPOND TO IT AS SOON AS I CAN. AND PLEASE SUBSCRIBE FOR MORE. YOU CAN FOLLOW ME ON MY FACEBOOK PAGE TOO https://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100011549616628 YOU CAN ALSO E-MAIL ME ON castlebang786@gmail.com OR favebook2011@rediffmail.com

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Copyright : All written content on this site, unless otherwise noted, has been created by the website owner. As such, the content is the property of the website owner. This content is protected by Indian and international copyright laws. If you wish to reproduce, re-post, or display any of our content on your own site please only do so if you also provide a link back to the source page on this website and properly attribute authorship. Our preference is that you seek our permission before doing so. If you see anything on this website that has not been properly attributed to its originator please contact me. In response, I will attempt to correct the attribution of the offending material or remove and/or replace it. All material on this website is posted in accordance with the limitations set forward by the Information Technology Act, 2000. If a documented copyright owner so requests, their material will be removed from published display, although the author reserves the right to provide linkage to that material or to a source for that material. As a website devoted to discussing and reviewing movies and television I will at times, for illustrative purposes, present copyrighted material, the use of which might not always be specifically authorized by the copyright owner. Such material is made available  for purposes such as criticism, comment, and research. The website owner believes that this constitutes a “fair use” of any such copyrighted material because the articles published on this website are distributed for entertainment purposes.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hoop Dreams Review

Hoop Dreams is one of the great cinematic experiences of my lifetime. Its length gives a good sense of the passing time and lets us feel an intimacy towards the hopes and aspirations of its characters. Although a documentary, Hoop Reams has more of a cinematic appeal because of the intrigue factor missing in most of the documentaries.

The tale is of two African-Americans William Gates and Arthur Agee who aspire to become NBA champions. As the tale progresses, the two tales oscillate between being poles apart and morphing into one another. This is a classic underdog story which hasn’t lost its appeal since it was released in 1994. It may be because of the gritty realism in Steve James’  storytelling. He doesn’t shoot with any preconceived ideas, as if to project it as an emotional drama or underdog story, he just lets wheels of fate work its motions and captures it unadulterated. Hoop Dreams is more of two characters realizing how easy it is to dream and how distant the dreams actually are.

The underlying theme also explores the American education system and its flaws and how its structure forces poverty-ridden kids to continue to live in the rut and monotony of life. The coaches and relatives win our hearts with their pragmatic testimonies, where they express their insecurities about the dreams of William and Arthur, yet never let these insecurities transpire before them.

Both William and Arthur never became NBA champions. William became a pastor while Arthur started his own clothing line. The movie, therefore misses the third act, where the character finally tastes sweet success. And good for the viewers too, for it gives a message that most sports movies seem to skip out on, that just because someone doesn’t make it to the top, it doesn’t give us an excuse to not remember them. It is broken dreams and aspirations that make a sport rather than the success stories.

RATING :- 9. 4 / 10

THANKS FOR READING. IF YOU HAVE LIKED/HAVE DIFFERENT VIEWS / HAVE ANY  DOUBTS, PLEASE SHARE. I WILL RESPOND TO IT AS SOON AS I CAN. AND PLEASE SUBSCRIBE FOR MORE. YOU CAN FOLLOW ME ON MY FACEBOOK PAGE TOO https://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100011549616628 YOU CAN ALSO E-MAIL ME ON castlebang786@gmail.com OR favebook2011@rediffmail.com

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Copyright : All written content on this site, unless otherwise noted, has been created by the website owner. As such, the content is the property of the website owner. This content is protected by Indian and international copyright laws. If you wish to reproduce, re-post, or display any of our content on your own site please only do so if you also provide a link back to the source page on this website and properly attribute authorship. Our preference is that you seek our permission before doing so. If you see anything on this website that has not been properly attributed to its originator please contact me. In response, I will attempt to correct the attribution of the offending material or remove and/or replace it. All material on this website is posted in accordance with the limitations set forward by the Information Technology Act, 2000. If a documented copyright owner so requests, their material will be removed from published display, although the author reserves the right to provide linkage to that material or to a source for that material. As a website devoted to discussing and reviewing movies and television I will at times, for illustrative purposes, present copyrighted material, the use of which might not always be specifically authorized by the copyright owner. Such material is made available  for purposes such as criticism, comment, and research. The website owner believes that this constitutes a “fair use” of any such copyrighted material because the articles published on this website are distributed for entertainment purposes.

Katy Perry – Part of Me Review

Katy Perry is one of my favourite singers. ‘Firework’ inspires me every time I hear it and ‘Not Like The Movies’ is the most romantic song I have ever heard and her tour documentary ‘Katy Perry-Part Of Me’ is one of my favourite movies.

The movie is a documentary but it works as a stirring dramatic musical. It has got the persona of Singin’  In The Rain and the charm of Perry herself. We expect the movie to be just about the tour but the tour just made her and the audience revisit her entire life. And it works like hell !

I think a great movie should feel like a documentary, that no one should comprehend that this didn’t really happen. It should blur the lines of motion picture and reality. And I think a great documentary should feel like a movie. We should forget that a real incident is being depicted with real footage. And Part Of Me did just that. It is a 900-page book about Katy Perry encompassed in a single movie. There is nothing more to know about Katy once you have watched the movie. Rarely do movies work like that.

First of all, the camera work is fabulous and the whole movie is played out like a Wes Anderson movie with music and vibrant imagery, just like Katy Perry wants it – like a fairy tale. In one of the scenes she says her live is like a fairy tale. The movie plays out like that. There is a beautiful beginning, then darkness clouds the heroine’s life and then the light shows up culminating into a happy ending.

This is what a character study should be like. I think more than a documentary about her life and the tour, it is much more an effort to decode this pop icon and her life and how she attained her stardom. It also works as an inspirational movie, Katy’s journey from rags to rich is ever-inspiring.

She addresses every aspect of her life and more than that, this movie works also as a musical. Every situation of her life is conveyed through a song of the same nature which doesn’t make the scene or song a disruption, it moves along with perfect harmony, complementing and enhancing each other’s effect.

Around the climax, Katy performs Firework and after the performances she is seen gasping her breath and saying something. It is inaudible but it leaves an aching effect on the heart. That moment stays with you and towards the end you realise you are with her gasping for breath, smiling and applauding. Katy Perry says her dream is to sing with people singing with her and them leaving with tears in their eyes and a smile on their face. Whether you find it great like me or not, it doesn’t matter, there will be a smile on your face. Katy achieves what she set out to do.

Katy Perry – Part Of Me is a great movie with beautiful music and brilliant camera work and whether you approach it as a musical drama, or as a documentary, or simply as a Katy Perry fan, you are gonna love it. No need to be a Perry fan, this movie is going to make one out of you. Definitely a must watch.

Rating : 9.4 / 10

THANKS FOR READING. IF YOU HAVE LIKED/HAVE DIFFERENT VIEWS / HAVE ANY  DOUBTS, PLEASE SHARE. I WILL RESPOND TO IT AS SOON AS I CAN. AND PLEASE SUBSCRIBE FOR MORE. YOU CAN FOLLOW ME ON MY FACEBOOK PAGE TOOhttps://www.facebook.com/pages/Demanded-Critical-Reviews/1565666967024477?ref=hlYOU CAN ALSO E-MAIL ME ON castlebang786@gmail.com OR favebook2011@rediffmail.com

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Copyright : All written content on this site, unless otherwise noted, has been created by the website owner. As such, the content is the property of the website owner. This content is protected by Indian and international copyright laws. If you wish to reproduce, re-post, or display any of our content on your own site please only do so if you also provide a link back to the source page on this website and properly attribute authorship. Our preference is that you seek our permission before doing so. If you see anything on this website that has not been properly attributed to its originator please contact me. In response, I will attempt to correct the attribution of the offending material or remove and/or replace it. All material on this website is posted in accordance with the limitations set forward by the Information Technology Act, 2000. If a documented copyright owner so requests, their material will be removed from published display, although the author reserves the right to provide linkage to that material or to a source for that material. As a website devoted to discussing and reviewing movies and television I will at times, for illustrative purposes, present copyrighted material, the use of which might not always be specifically authorized by the copyright owner. Such material is made available  for purposes such as criticism, comment, and research. The website owner believes that this constitutes a “fair use” of any such copyrighted material because the articles published on this website are distributed for entertainment purposes.