Thursday, August 30, 2007

Foreign into Fall: Part III

Part I and Part II can be read by click on the links. Here's my most recent Foreign Film's viewed for this series and have been selected from Edward Copeland's best of non-English film nomination list.

La Strada (1956) directed by Federico Fellini
I've passed up watching this movie so many times, perhaps because of the circus theme or something? But it is a compelling story and Anthony Quinn is famulous as a heartless and limited-talent street performer, Zampanò.

Sold to amuse and bolster Zampanò's performance, Gelsomina struggles with the abuse particularly the emotional abuse. This movie serves to show how and why nice girls fall for bad guys and don't leave them.

Forbidden Games (1952) directed by René Clément
I highly encourage watching this film. It is such an amazing film, that deals with the effects of war in such an interesting way, through Paulette, a five year old girl instantly orphaned during an air bombing during WWII. Unable to fully realize what has happened, she latches onto her dead dog, making sure that finds peace as it enters the next life.

This story was just so rich and layered and powerful. Paulette's attempts to understand God, death, war, family and friendship are unfolded in such a neat way in this picture. This is a true gem.

Black Orpheus (1959) directed by Marcel Camus
It's like early Baz Luhrman, but instead of Romeo+Juliet, it's the story of Orpheus (in Greek mythology the son of king and muse) who becomes the inspiration for music, poetry, and art. Yet in this version of Orpheus, you have Orpheus, a trolley driver in Rio de Jeneiro, Brazil during Carnival. Lots of dancing, costumes, and the tragic love story of Orpheus and Eurydice.

This project is fun and unique, but is played in a much less serious tone then most of the other foreign films that have been a part of this project.

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Terence Towles Canote said...

I always loved La Strada, but then I am a fan of a lot of Fellini's films.

Edward Copeland said...

I liked La Strada fine, but I didn't love it the way I do Nights of Cabiria or 8 1/2. I like La Dolce Vita better as well. Forbidden Games is one of the titles on the list I haven't been able to see yet.

jfc69 said...

La Strada and Forbidden games (Jeux interdits) are two master pieces. No doubt.

Michael Parsons said...

Great movies all of them. I tis nice to see people are still enjoying them

RC said...

@mercurie, do you have a favorite Fellini film? It looks like Edward has some faveroties.

@Eddward, you've got to see Forbidden's one of my new favorite movies, for sure.

jfc68 said...

Brigitte Fossey was Paulette in Forbidden Games. As an adult, she starred in movies directed by Bertrand Blier, François Truffaud, Jean-Charles Tachella, etc.

She is now 60 +

I wish her well, she is "une grande dame".

Glenn Dunks said...

I can't stand La Strada. So much twee.