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1001 films you must see before you die Part XIII: 1985-1989

Página 4 de 4. Precedente  1, 2, 3, 4

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Re: 1001 films you must see before you die Part XIII: 1985-1989

Mensaje  JM el Lun Dic 14, 2009 2:04 pm

797
Roger and me (Michael Moore, 1989)




Roger and Me is a loose, smart-alecky documentary directed and narrated by Michael Moore, an everyman host with a devastating wit and a working-class pose. When his hometown is devastated by the plant closure of an American corporate giant (making record profits, one should note), the hell-raising political commentator with a prankster streak tries to turn his camera on General Motors Chairman Roger B. Smith, the elusive Roger of the title, and the film is loosely structured around Moore's odyssey to track down the corporate giant for an interview.
While Moore ambushes his corporate subjects like a blue-collar Geraldo Rivera, a guerrilla interviewer who treasures his comic rebuffs as much as his interviews, his portraits of the colorful characters he meets along the way can be patronizing. The famous come off as absurdly out of touch (Anita Bryant appears for some can-do cheerleading, and hometown celebrity Bob Eubanks tells some boorish jokes), and the disenfranchised poor (notably an unemployed woman who sells rabbit meat to make ends meet) all too often appear as buffoons or hicks. But behind his loose play with the facts and snarky attitude is a devastating look at the victims of downsizing in the midst of the 1980s economic boom. This portrait of Reagan's America and the tarnish on the American dream comes down to a simple question: what is corporate America's responsibility to the country's citizens? That's a question no one at GM wants to answer.


JM

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Re: 1001 films you must see before you die Part XIII: 1985-1989

Mensaje  JM el Lun Dic 14, 2009 2:16 pm

798
Astenicheskiy sindrom (The Asthenic Syndrome- Kira Muratova, 1989)




Some films and filmmakers don't budge an inch from their artistic visions, regardless of whether they are easy for the viewer to understand or tolerate, and (in this case) regardless of the inevitable disapproval of the state censors. Award-winning Russian director Kira Muratova has put together such a grimly comic film here, in two segments - one of them black and white. In the opening (black and white) segment, a woman doctor, is coping very badly with the recent death of her husband; she refuses to treat one of her patients and later goes out on the streets and picks up a drunk and takes him home with her for sex. In the next segment, a film school teacher asks his students what they thought of the previous segment. Interspersed with the student's characteristically self-serving and uninsightful answers are moments of bleak beauty, as when a lonely overweight woman, totally ignored by her son, plays a moving solo of "Strangers In The Night" on the trumpet.


JM

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Re: 1001 films you must see before you die Part XIII: 1985-1989

Mensaje  JM el Lun Dic 14, 2009 2:22 pm

799
Sex, lies and videotapes (Steven Soderbergh, 1989)




Winner of the Palm d'Or and Best Actor awards at the 1989 Cannes Film Festival, sex, lies, and videotape transformed the independent film industry and turned writer-director Steven Soderbergh into the envy of aspiring filmmakers everywhere. Sly, seductive, and coolly intelligent, the movie explores the sexual shenanigans and personal preoccupations of its four central characters, revolving around a selfish lawyer (Peter Gallagher) who responds to his wife by having an affair with her free-spirited sister (Laura San Giacomo). But when the lawyer's college roommate (James Spader) arrives for an unexpectedly extended visit, the neglected wife (Andie MacDowell) is surprisingly responsive to his seductive hobby of videotaping women as they describe their sexual fantasies. It's his way of compensating for impotence, but the curious wife considers this a sexual challenge, and Soderbergh turns sex, lies, and videotape into a fascinating chamber piece that puts a decidedly different spin on the consequences of infidelity. Balanced on a risky and finely tuned performance by Spader, the film delivers frisky passion and emotional intrigue, and yet much of its allure is found in the exchange of secrets and the hidden mysteries of sexual desire.



Última edición por JM el Miér Dic 16, 2009 3:36 pm, editado 1 vez

JM

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Re: 1001 films you must see before you die Part XIII: 1985-1989

Mensaje  JM el Lun Dic 14, 2009 2:30 pm

800
Say anything... (Cameron Crowe, 1989)




Seven years after he earned his first screen credit as the writer of Fast Times at Ridgemont High, former Rolling Stone writer Cameron Crowe made his directorial debut with this acclaimed romantic comedy starring John Cusack and Ione Skye as unlikely lovers on the cusp of adulthood. The casting is perfect, and Crowe's rookie direction is appropriately unobtrusive, no doubt influenced by his actor-loving, Oscar®-winning mentor, James L. Brooks. But the real strength of Crowe's work is his exceptional writing, his timely grasp of contemporary rhythms and language (he's frequently called "the voice of a generation"), and the rich humor and depth of his fully developed characters. In Say Anything... Cusack and Skye play recent high school graduates enjoying one final summer before leaping into a lifetime of adult responsibilities. Lloyd (Cusack) is an aspiring kickboxer with no definite plans; Diane (Skye) is a valedictorian with intentions to further her education in Europe. Together they find unlikely bliss, but there's also turbulence when Diane's father (John Mahoney)--who only wants what's best for his daughter--is charged with fraud and tax evasion. Favoring strong performances over obtrusive visual style, Crowe focuses on his unique characters and the ambitions and fears that define them; the movie's a treasure trove of quiet, often humorous revelations of personality. Lili Taylor and Eric Stoltz score high marks for memorable supporting roles, and Cusack's own sister Joan is perfect in scenes with her onscreen and offscreen brother. A rare romantic comedy that's as funny as it is dramatically honest, Say Anything... marked the arrival of a gifted writer-director who followed up with the underrated Singles before scoring his first box-office smash with Jerry Maguire.


JM

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Re: 1001 films you must see before you die Part XIII: 1985-1989

Mensaje  JM el Lun Dic 14, 2009 2:35 pm

801
The unbelievable truth (Hal Hartley, 1989)




The films of Hal Hartley, New York's modern beatnik cinema laureate, are not for everyone. His self-consciously clever ping-pong dialogue sounds like a cross between song lyrics and Samuel Beckett, while his deadpan direction gives a wry cast to it all. It's romantic comedy skewed through a thoroughly modern perspective, and it sprung fully formed in his debut feature. Gloomy redheaded pixie Adrienne Shelly, a neurotic high school student fixated on doomsday scenarios, falls for the tall, dark, and mysterious Robert Burke, a black-clad, philosophy-spouting mechanic who is constantly mistaken for a priest and rumored to be a convicted murderer.
An enigmatic, intellectually playful farce played with ironic understatement, Hartley's austere film was shot on the cheap with a handsome, restrained style and directed with an approach straddling verbal slapstick and modernist irony. Shelly mixes the goofy, obsessive distractions of a screwball heroine with smarts, determination, and hardball negotiating skills, while Burke's quiet calm and confidence radiates warmth and sincerity even while playing the loner. Hartley explores the line between truth and rumor, and he takes satirical swipes at the culture of cash and contracts--yet for all his irony he remains an optimist. For all its hip '90s attitude, the unbelievable truth is that Hartley is a romantic at heart.


JM

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Re: 1001 films you must see before you die Part XIII: 1985-1989

Mensaje  JM el Lun Dic 14, 2009 2:44 pm

802
Beiqing chengshi (A city of sadness- Hou Hsiao-Hsien, 1989)




A previous poster described this film as a Taiwanese Godfather, but better. Indeed, this film has a lot similarities to godfather, in which the most notable is the condensation of an entire nation into the life of one single family. Even though I never really come to love other Hou's films, City of Sadness is a flawless epic that truthfully depict an era that is forgotten by most of my generation. I have heard those stories from my paternal grandparents, who are like people portrait in the film, grass root Taiwanese. I have also heard stories from my maternal grandparents, who are the late comers from mainland China. The entire different perspectives surprised me that in such a small nation, mistrust is still profoundly rooted and transmitted via generations. City of Sadness portraits this image so hauntingly and yet with beautiful and quiet transcendence seeing the turmoil through the eyes of the deaf and mute son of the Lin family. Taiwan, the city of sadness, is eternally sorrowful because of its rootlessness, which until today, still runs in my blood.


JM

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Re: 1001 films you must see before you die Part XIII: 1985-1989

Mensaje  JM el Lun Dic 14, 2009 2:48 pm

803
Glory (Edward Zwick, 1989)




One of the finest films ever made about the American Civil War, Glory also has the honor of being the first major Hollywood film to acknowledge the vital contribution of African American soldiers to the country's historic struggle. Based on the books Lay This Laurel, by Lincoln Kirstein, and One Gallant Rush, by Peter Burchard, and the wartime letters of Robert Gould Shaw, the film tells the story of the 54th Regiment of the Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry, an all-black unit comprising Northern freemen and escaped slaves. Under the command of Shaw (played by Matthew Broderick), the 54th served admirably in battle until they made their ultimate demonstration of bravery during the almost suicidal assault on the Confederate Fort Wagner in Charleston, South Carolina, on July 18, 1863. Glory achieves its powerful impact by meticulously setting up the terrible conditions under which these neglected soldiers fought, and by illuminating the tenacity of the human spirit from the oppression of slavery to the hard-won recognition of battlefield heroism. Although Denzel Washington deservedly won an Oscar for his supporting role as a runaway-slave-turned-soldier, Glory faced some tough competition at the 1989 Academy Awards (against popular hits like Driving Miss Daisy and Dead Poets Society) and was shut out of nearly all the major categories. Since then, it's been duly recognized by historians and critics as a classic film of its genre.


JM

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Re: 1001 films you must see before you die Part XIII: 1985-1989

Mensaje  JM el Lun Dic 14, 2009 2:50 pm

804
Do the right thing (Spike Lee, 1989)




Spike Lee's incendiary look at race relations in America, circa 1989, is so colorful and exuberant for its first three-quarters that you can almost forget the terrible confrontation that the movie inexorably builds toward. Do the Right Thing is a joyful, tumultuous masterpiece--maybe the best film ever made about race in America, revealing racial prejudices and stereotypes in all their guises and demonstrating how a deadly riot can erupt out of a series of small misunderstandings. Set on one block in Bedford-Stuyvesant on the hottest day of the summer, the movie shows the whole spectrum of life in this neighborhood and then leaves it up to us to decide if, in the end, anybody actually does the "right thing." Featuring Danny Aiello as Sal, the pizza parlor owner; Lee himself as Mookie, the lazy pizza-delivery guy; John Turturro and Richard Edson as Sal's sons; Lee's sister Joie as Mookie's sister Jade; Rosie Perez as Mookie's girlfriend Tina; Ossie Davis and Ruby Dee as the block elders, Da Mayor and Mother Sister; Giancarlo Esposito as Mookie's hot-headed friend Buggin' Out; Bill Nunn as the boom-box toting Radio Raheem; and Samuel L. Jackson as deejay Mister Señor Love Daddy. A rich and nuanced film to watch, treasure, and learn from--over and over again.


JM

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Re: 1001 films you must see before you die Part XIII: 1985-1989

Mensaje  JM el Lun Dic 14, 2009 2:55 pm

805
Dip huet seung hung (The killer- John Woo, 1989)




John Woo's 1989 Hong Kong action classic, a stylish, bullet-riddled elegy to friendship under fire, firmly established him as the maestro of mayhem. Superstar Chow Yun-Fat, Asia's king of cool, plays the most charming hit man ever (and yes, he only takes contracts on those who deserve it), but when one of his killings leaves an innocent nightclub singer (Sally Yeh) blinded, he dedicates his life to giving her back her sight. Danny Lee is the cop on his tail, but the two adversaries become unlikely comrades when the mob decides to cancel its debt to Chow by taking him out, leading to a beautifully filmed and incredibly violent confrontation. Woo places the showdown in a church and punctuates the acrobatic gunfight with images of religious icons, flying doves, and burning candles. An ode to Jean-Pierre Melville's existential gangster classic Le Samouria, Woo's delirious mix of melodrama and stylized action recalls the balletic bloodletting of Sam Peckinpah, the elegant camerawork of Martin Scorsese, and the operatic, larger-than-life grandeur of Sergio Leone. Woo's love of American musicals (and his own background as a dance instructor) adds a touch of grace to the fluid choreography of the action scenes. In terms of sheer action, Woo topped himself a few years later with Hard-Boiled, his Hong Kong swan song, but most critics still rate The Killer as his masterpiece.


JM

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Re: 1001 films you must see before you die Part XIII: 1985-1989

Mensaje  JM el Miér Dic 16, 2009 3:33 pm

806
Batman (Tim Burton, 1986)




Thanks to the ambitious vision of director Tim Burton, the blockbuster hit of 1989 delivers the goods despite an occasionally spotty script, giving the caped crusader a thorough overhaul in keeping with the crime fighter's evolution in DC Comics. Michael Keaton strikes just the right mood as the brooding "Dark Knight" of Gotham City; Kim Basinger plays Gotham's intrepid reporter Vicki Vale; and Jack Nicholson goes wild as the maniacal and scene-stealing Joker, who plots a takeover of the city with his lethal Smilex gas. Triumphant Oscar-winning production design by the late Anton Furst turns Batman into a visual feast, and Burton brilliantly establishes a darkly mythic approach to Batman's legacy. Danny Elfman's now-classic score propels the action with bold, muscular verve.


JM

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Re: 1001 films you must see before you die Part XIII: 1985-1989

Mensaje  JM el Miér Dic 16, 2009 3:41 pm

807
When Harry met Sally (Rob Reiner, 1989)




Nora Ephron wrote the brisk screenplay for this 1989 romantic comedy, director Rob Reiner made a nicely glossy New York story (very much in a Woody Allen vein) out of it, and Billy Crystal's unstoppable charm made it something really special. Crystal and Meg Ryan play longtime platonic friends who keep dancing around their deeper feelings for one another, and Bruno Kirby and Carrie Fisher are their respective pals who fall in love and get married. Ryan doesn't get a lot of funny material, but her performance is typically alive and intuitive, and she more than holds her own with Crystal's comic motor mouth and sweet sentimentality. Reiner is on comfortable ground, liberated from the burden of making serious statements in the lead-footed manner of subsequent features.


JM

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Re: 1001 films you must see before you die Part XIII: 1985-1989

Mensaje  JM el Miér Dic 16, 2009 3:44 pm

808
Crimes and misdemeanors (Woody Allen, 1989)




Along with Deconstructing Harry which would follow seven years later, this is Woody Allen's most somber comedy-drama, as well as his most ambitious film of the 1980s. Allen weaves together two central stories about very different groups of Manhattanites, linking them through a mutual friend, a rabbi (Sam Waterston) who's going blind. This image is key to the sometimes ponderous, often clever musings on faith, morals, and vision (or lack thereof) that obsess his deeply troubled and unhappy characters. At its center, the film explores people who, through lack of religious conviction or arrogance, rationalize their awful, selfish acts by presuming that God couldn't possibly be watching.
The central story--a neo-noir of sorts--follows a fortuitous ophthalmologist (Martin Landau, all sweat and grimaces) who faces the prospect of his obsessed mistress (Anjelica Huston) ruining his life by telling his family of their affair. Desperate, the doctor hires his slimy criminal brother (Jerry Orbach) to eliminate the situation, and then suffers overwhelming regret afterwards. The flip tale is more typical Allen. Funnier and lighter, it focuses on an impossible romance between Allen's character and Halley Reed, a film producer played by Mia Farrow. Between Allen and his Hollywood fantasy stands his brother-in-law (Alan Alda, perfectly cast as an obnoxious, successful sitcom producer), who also desires Halley. Allen is Landau's opposite: an honest, struggling documentarian who cares nothing about fortune, suffers in a loveless marriage, and is surrounded by triumphant phonies. The nice-guys-finish-last moral may be as contrived as it is devastating. Yet, when Landau and Allen finally share a final scene during a wedding, their faces, subtle body movements, and contrasting fortunes somehow suggest that indeed God may be blind, and if not, the deity has a very sick sense of humor.


JM

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Re: 1001 films you must see before you die Part XIII: 1985-1989

Mensaje  JM el Miér Dic 16, 2009 3:48 pm

809
The cook, the thief, his wife and her lover (Peter Greenaway, 1989)




Few directors polarize audiences like Peter Greenaway, a filmmaker as influenced by Jacobean revenge tragedy and 17th century painting as by the French New Wave. The Cook, the Thief, His Wife and Her Lover is both adored and detested for its combination of sumptuous beauty and revolting decadence. A vile, gluttonous thief (Michael Gambon, The Singing Detective) spews hate and abuse at a restaurant run by a stoic French cook (Richard Bohringer, Diva), but under the thief's nose his wife (the ever-sensuous Helen Mirren, Prime Suspect) conducts an affair with a bookish lover (Alan Howard, Strapless). Clothing (by avant-garde designer Jean-Paul Gaultier) changes color as the characters move from room to room. Nudity, torture, rotting meat, and Tim Roth (Reservoir Dogs) at his sleaziest all contribute the atmosphere of decay and excess. Not for everyone, but for some, essential.


JM

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Re: 1001 films you must see before you die Part XIII: 1985-1989

Mensaje  JM el Miér Dic 16, 2009 3:50 pm

810
Drugstore cowboy (Gus Van Sant, 1989)




Gus Van Sant made his name with this offbeat story of a small group of drug addicts who heist pharmacies to feed their habit. Matt Dillon completely broke with his juvenile persona as Bob, the grungy ringleader and jittery mastermind of a junkie crew. With his frustrated wife Dianne (Kelly Lynch), his loyal partner, the easygoing Rick (James Le Gros), and Rick's juvenile girlfriend Nadine (Heather Graham in an early role), Bob plots ingenious heists and spends the rest of his days sitting around the house getting high. When the heat becomes too intense in Portland, the quartet hits the road for small-town drug stores and hospitals, but when their luck runs out it does so in grand fashion. Set in the Pacific Northwest of 1971, Van Sant so effortlessly re-creates the period that you'd think the film was a time capsule--except for the attitude. Van Sant refuses to moralize and lines his sympathies behind his characters. They're no heroes, but Van Sant can't cast them as villains either. His low-key direction concentrates on the flavor of day-to-day life for a crew of junkies living from fix to fix. Even his drug imagery is inventively placid, a dreamy set of floating visions that suggests their own disembodied states. James Remar costars as the dogged police detective Gentry and cult author William S. Burroughs makes a memorable appearance as the aging junkie Tom the Priest.


JM

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Re: 1001 films you must see before you die Part XIII: 1985-1989

Mensaje  JM el Jue Dic 17, 2009 1:52 pm

811
My left foot (Jim Sheridan, 1989)




Daniel Day-Lewis won a much-deserved Oscar for his wily, passionate performance as Irish artist and writer Christy Brown, whose cerebral palsy kept him confined to a wheelchair. Filmmaker Jim Sheridan (In the Name of the Father) adapts Brown's own autobiography for this spirited piece, focusing on the sometimes-difficult fellow's formative years in his large family and in love with sundry women. Day-Lewis is inspired, and Brenda Fricker (also a recipient of an Oscar for her part in this movie) is almost luminous as Christy's dedicated mother. So, too, are Ray McAnally as the hero's stormy father, and Hugh O'Conor (The Young Poisoner's Handbook) as the child Christy. All in all, this is a complete pleasure for viewers.


JM

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Re: 1001 films you must see before you die Part XIII: 1985-1989

Mensaje  JM el Jue Dic 17, 2009 1:56 pm

812
Henry: Portrait of a serial killer
(John McNaughton, 1986)




Most horror films exist in a fantasy movie-world safely removed from our existence, populated by zombie-like killers and psychopathic madmen. The power of Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer is its chilling placement in the mundane existence of everyday life. Michael Rooker plays Henry not as a raving psychopath but as the frumpy guy next door, a drifter who takes out his frustrations on random victims and escalates his body count after teaming up with the violent ex-con Otis (Tom Towles). Though not exceedingly gory in light of the excesses of such fantasy horrors as the Friday the 13th and Nightmare on Elm Street series, director John McNaughton's straightforward presentation and documentary-like style creates a chilling realism that many viewers will find hard to watch. McNaughton neither comments on nor flinches at the brutal violence, which reaches its apex in a disturbing camcorder-eye view of a particularly sadistic murder of a middle-class couple, with Henry and Otis smiling through the deed as they record it for their continued pleasure. Henry straddles the line between True Crime (though fictional, the story was inspired by the confessions of real life serial killer Henry Lee Lucas) and horror, a bleak, brutal kind of terror for a generation deadened by the escalating outrageousness of movie murders and nightly news crime scene clips.


JM

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Re: 1001 films you must see before you die Part XIII: 1985-1989

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