Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Cinema Paradiso

Guiseppe Tornatore, 1988, Italy (10*)
Best Foreign Film (AA, BAA)
Cinema magic about the magic of movies. A beautiful epic film about growing up with a life that revolves around a cinema theater in a small town in Sicily, and the effect of films on the local townfolk, and one boy in particular, played by Salvatore Cascio as a kid and Marco Leonardi when grown up.

The story starts when a projectionist, wonderfully played by Philippe Noiret, befriends a boy whose dad is missing during the war and who hangs out at the theater whenever he can. The story follows him from boyhood to adulthood, all tied together with movies. Eventually, as an adult, we see the boy all grown up, and now a filmmaker himself.

An all-time top 10 for me, the dvd release also includes the longer director's cut, almost an hour of additional footage (but not really necessary to the story). Winner of both an Oscar® and a BAFTA for foreign language film, something that only five films have done. The others are: Babette's Feast (Denmark, 1988), Almodovar's All About My Mother (Spain, 1999), Ang Lee's Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon (China, 2000), and The Lives of Others (Germany, 2006).

Currently ranked No. 74 on the IMDB top 250 (as of 5.4.11)


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Artist, photographer, composer, author, blogger, metaphysician, herbalist

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These are the individual film reviews of what I'm considering the best 1000 dvds available, whether they are films, miniseries, or live concerts. Rather than rush out all 1000 at once, I'm doing them over time to allow inclusion of new releases - in fact, 2008 has the most of any year so far, 30 titles in all; that was a very good year for films, one of the best ever.

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