29 December 2010

100 Films Incontournables

100 Films Incontournables
100 Films Incontournables, by Emmanuelle Le Roy Poncet, is a guide to 100 classic films, listed chronologically. Each director was restricted to a single entry.

The 100 Films Incontournables are as follows:
  • City Lights
  • Snow White & The Seven Dwarfs
  • Port Of Shadows
  • Gone With The Wind
  • The Rules Of The Game
  • Citizen Kane
  • Casablanca
  • Rome: Open City
  • La Belle & La Bete
  • Kind Hearts & Coronets
  • All About Eve
  • A Streetcar Named Desire
  • Jeux Interdits
  • Tokyo Story
  • Seven Samurai
  • Touchez Pas Au Grisbi
  • & God Created Woman
  • The Searchers
  • Vertigo
  • Some Like It Hot
  • The 400 Blows
  • Rio Bravo
  • La Dolce Vita
  • War Of The Buttons
  • Lawrence Of Arabia
  • Le Mepris
  • Les Tontons Flingeurs
  • Le Grand Vadrouille
  • A Man & A Woman
  • Belle De Jour
  • The Young Girls Of Rochefort
  • The Graduate
  • Le Cercle Rouge
  • The Things Of Life
  • Love Story
  • Death In Venice
  • The Godfather
  • Cabaret
  • Deliverance
  • Last Tango In Paris
  • The Sting
  • The Way We Were
  • A Woman Under The Influence
  • Barry Lyndon
  • The Old Gun
  • That Most Important Thing: Love
  • One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest
  • Cria Cuervos
  • Annie Hall
  • Star Wars IV: A New Hope
  • The Deer Hunter
  • Alien
  • The Marriage Of Maria Braun
  • Serie Noire
  • La Boum
  • Garde A Vue
  • Raiders Of The Lost Ark
  • Identification Of A Woman
  • Fanny & Alexander
  • A Nos Amours
  • Pauline At The Beach
  • So Long, Stooge
  • Once Upon A Time In America
  • Paris, Texas
  • A Sunday In The Country
  • Brazil
  • Shoah
  • Au Revoir, Les Enfants
  • The Big Blue
  • Die Hard
  • Dead Poets Society
  • GoodFellas
  • Pretty Woman
  • Edward Scissorhands
  • Basic Instinct
  • Three Colours: Blue
  • La Reine Margot
  • Wild Reeds
  • Pulp Fiction
  • Four Weddings & A Funeral
  • La Ceremonie
  • The Usual Suspects
  • Life Is Beautiful
  • The Big Lebowski
  • Titanic
  • Fight Club
  • The Virgin Suicides
  • Dancer In The Dark
  • In The Mood For Love
  • Amelie
  • The Lord Of The Rings I: The Fellowship Of The Ring
  • Mulholland Drive
  • Asterix & Obelisk Meet Cleopatra
  • L'Auberge Espagnole
  • The Pianist
  • Talk To Her
  • Million Dollar Baby
  • Brokeback Mountain
  • Pan's Labyrinth
  • The Lives Of Others
[Note that Some Like It Hot is the classic Billy Wilder comedy, and Titanic is the James Cameron blockbuster.] Clearly, the list has a French bias: more than a third of the entries are French-language films.

100 Films Incontournables

100 Films Incontournables
100 Films Incontournables, by Emmanuelle Le Roy Poncet, is a guide to 100 classic films, listed chronologically. Each director was restricted to a single entry.

The 100 Films Incontournables are as follows:
  • City Lights
  • Snow White & The Seven Dwarfs
  • Port Of Shadows
  • Gone With The Wind
  • The Rules Of The Game
  • Citizen Kane
  • Casablanca
  • Rome: Open City
  • La Belle & La Bete
  • Kind Hearts & Coronets
  • All About Eve
  • A Streetcar Named Desire
  • Jeux Interdits
  • Tokyo Story
  • Seven Samurai
  • Touchez Pas Au Grisbi
  • & God Created Woman
  • The Searchers
  • Vertigo
  • Some Like It Hot
  • The 400 Blows
  • Rio Bravo
  • La Dolce Vita
  • War Of The Buttons
  • Lawrence Of Arabia
  • Le Mepris
  • Les Tontons Flingeurs
  • Le Grand Vadrouille
  • A Man & A Woman
  • Belle De Jour
  • The Young Girls Of Rochefort
  • The Graduate
  • Le Cercle Rouge
  • The Things Of Life
  • Love Story
  • Death In Venice
  • The Godfather
  • Cabaret
  • Deliverance
  • Last Tango In Paris
  • The Sting
  • The Way We Were
  • A Woman Under The Influence
  • Barry Lyndon
  • The Old Gun
  • That Most Important Thing: Love
  • One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest
  • Cria Cuervos
  • Annie Hall
  • Star Wars IV: A New Hope
  • The Deer Hunter
  • Alien
  • The Marriage Of Maria Braun
  • Serie Noire
  • La Boum
  • Garde A Vue
  • Raiders Of The Lost Ark
  • Identification Of A Woman
  • Fanny & Alexander
  • A Nos Amours
  • Pauline At The Beach
  • So Long, Stooge
  • Once Upon A Time In America
  • Paris, Texas
  • A Sunday In The Country
  • Brazil
  • Shoah
  • Au Revoir, Les Enfants
  • The Big Blue
  • Die Hard
  • Dead Poets Society
  • GoodFellas
  • Pretty Woman
  • Edward Scissorhands
  • Basic Instinct
  • Three Colours: Blue
  • La Reine Margot
  • Wild Reeds
  • Pulp Fiction
  • Four Weddings & A Funeral
  • La Ceremonie
  • The Usual Suspects
  • Life Is Beautiful
  • The Big Lebowski
  • Titanic
  • Fight Club
  • The Virgin Suicides
  • Dancer In The Dark
  • In The Mood For Love
  • Amelie
  • The Lord Of The Rings I: The Fellowship Of The Ring
  • Mulholland Drive
  • Asterix & Obelisk Meet Cleopatra
  • L'Auberge Espagnole
  • The Pianist
  • Talk To Her
  • Million Dollar Baby
  • Brokeback Mountain
  • Pan's Labyrinth
  • The Lives Of Others
[Note that Some Like It Hot is the classic Billy Wilder comedy, and Titanic is the James Cameron blockbuster.] Clearly, the list has a French bias: more than a third of the entries are French-language films.

17 December 2010

Hope In The Dark

Hope In The DarkVicious Circle
Moral BoundaryMoral Boundary
Hope In The Dark, a new exhibition of paintings by Anupong Chantorn, opened in Bangkok yesterday. The show is named after a painting Anupong exhibited at the 2nd Bangkok Triennale last year. He caused controversy in 2007 with a painting depicting monks as scavenging birds, inspiring the butoh performance San-Dan-Ka; the new exhibition includes a similar drawing of a monk with a crow's beak, titled Vicious Circle.

Hope In The Dark also includes an even more provocative image. A drawing titled Moral Boundary shows three monks: one with an over-sized erect phallus, another being groped by the first, and a naked observer. The scene, albeit with slightly less nudity, has also been painted directly onto a monk's saffron robe.

Hope In The Dark also features an impressive collection of large bronze animal sculptures. The exhibition is at the Ardel Gallery of Modern Art until 30th January 2011.

Akira Kurosawa 100 Years Retrospective

Akira Kurosawa 100 Years Retrospective
Rashomon Seven Samurai
Judo Saga Judo Saga II
The Quiet Duel The Idiot
One Wonderful Sunday Drunken Angel
Scandal The Men Who Step On The Tiger's Tail
Ikiru Stray Dog
Throne Of Blood Red Beard
The Lower Depths The Hidden Fortress
The Bad Sleep Well Yojimbo
Sanjuro Dodesukaden
High & Low Madadayo
No Regrets For Our YouthI Live In Fear
The Most Beautiful
Next month, the Japan Foundation will present an Akira Kurosawa 100 Years Retrospective, with screenings of twenty-five classic Kurosawa films. This will be arguably one of Bangkok's greatest film festivals thus far, an incredible opportunity to see Jidai-Geki (historical) masterpieces such as Rashomon and Seven Samurai alongside Gendai-Geki (contemporary) dramas such as Ikiru.

The Kurosawa Retrospective marks a distinct contrast with the Japan Foundation's Hidden Treasures season from the 2008 Japanese Film Festival. Hidden Treasures, as the title suggests, highlighted some under-rated films from Japan's cinematic golden age, while the Kurosawa Retrospective showcases the work of Japan's most celebrated director.

Seven Samurai is Kurosawa's most widely-seen and critically-acclaimed film. As in Rashomon, Toshiro Mifune's animalistic characterisation is offset by Takashi Shimura's stoic performance. Isao Kimura plays an overly effete samurai who picks flowers in the forest, and his affair with a local girl is unexpected. After a long build-up, the final hour (and especially the final reel) is an epic battle complete with cavalry, burning buildings, and a rainstorm. Kurosawa greatly admired John Ford, and Seven Samurai sometimes feels like a Hollywood western on an epic scale.

Kurosawa's contemporary dramas are even more fascinating than his medieval epics. Drunken Angel, for example, stars Shimura in the title role as a belligerent, alcoholic doctor whose bark is worse than his bite. Kurosawa intended the film as a condemnation of organised crime, though the young yakuza played by Mifune (in his first performance for Kurosawa) ultimately redeems himself before dying of tuberculosis. The film's dark themes (gangsters and corruption in post-war Japanese society, symbolised by a filthy, stagnant pond) are counter-balanced by a light musical score, much of which is diegetic. A slow-motion dream sequence, in which the yakuza is chased by his ghost after his coffin is washed up on a beach, seems rather incongruous, however.

Scandal, a didactic protest film like Drunken Angel, also stars Shimura and Mifune. An artist, played by Mifune, is photographed by the paparazzi (though they were not yet called paparazzi, as Scandal predates La Dolce Vita), and he hires a second-rate lawyer, played by Shimura, to sue the photographer's boss. Kurosawa initially highlights the opportunistic, sensationalist nature of tabloid journalism, though this is followed by a surprising shift in narrative emphasis: the lawyer becomes the central protagonist, and the film develops into a character study of this weak-willed though ultimately honourable man. In fact, the lawyer is the only fully developed character, with the others being rather one-dimensional. There is also an excess of sentimentality, with long carol-singing sequences and a sub-plot involving the lawyer's angelic, bed-ridden daughter.

The Kurosawa Retrospective runs from 6th to 19th January at SF World (CentralWorld). 6th January: Rashomon; 7th January: The Quiet Duel; 8th January: Judo Saga, The Most Beautiful, Judo Saga II, and The Idiot; 9th January: No Regrets For Our Youth, One Wonderful Sunday, Drunken Angel, and Scandal; 10th January: Stray Dog; 11th January: The Men Who Step On The Tiger's Tail; 12th January: Ikiru; 13th January: Seven Samurai; 14th January: I Live In Fear; 15th January: Throne Of Blood, The Lower Depths, and The Hidden Fortress; 16th January: The Bad Sleep Well, Yojimbo, Sanjuro, and Madadayao; 17th January: High & Low; 18th January: Red Beard; 19th January: Dodesukaden.

Two of Kurosawa's films will also be screened at the Japan Foundation after the Centennial Retrospective: Madadayao on 21st January, and Rashomon on 28th January. All screenings, at SF World and the Japan Foundation, are free.

Akira Kurosawa 100 Years Retrospective

Akira Kurosawa 100 Years Retrospective
Rashomon Seven Samurai
Judo Saga Judo Saga II
The Quiet Duel The Idiot
One Wonderful Sunday Drunken Angel
Scandal The Men Who Step On The Tiger's Tail
Ikiru Stray Dog
Throne Of Blood Red Beard
The Lower Depths The Hidden Fortress
The Bad Sleep Well Yojimbo
Sanjuro Dodesukaden
High & Low Madadayo
No Regrets For Our YouthI Live In Fear
The Most Beautiful
Next month, the Japan Foundation will present an Akira Kurosawa 100 Years Retrospective, with screenings of twenty-five classic Kurosawa films. This will be arguably one of Bangkok's greatest film festivals thus far, an incredible opportunity to see Jidai-Geki (historical) masterpieces such as Rashomon and Seven Samurai alongside Gendai-Geki (contemporary) dramas such as Ikiru.

The Kurosawa Retrospective marks a distinct contrast with the Japan Foundation's Hidden Treasures season from the 2008 Japanese Film Festival. Hidden Treasures, as the title suggests, highlighted some under-rated films from Japan's cinematic golden age, while the Kurosawa Retrospective showcases the work of Japan's most celebrated director.

Seven Samurai is Kurosawa's most widely-seen and critically-acclaimed film. As in Rashomon, Toshiro Mifune's animalistic characterisation is offset by Takashi Shimura's stoic performance. Isao Kimura plays an overly effete samurai who picks flowers in the forest, and his affair with a local girl is unexpected. After a long build-up, the final hour (and especially the final reel) is an epic battle complete with cavalry, burning buildings, and a rainstorm. Kurosawa greatly admired John Ford, and Seven Samurai sometimes feels like a Hollywood western on an epic scale.

Kurosawa's contemporary dramas are even more fascinating than his medieval epics. Drunken Angel, for example, stars Shimura in the title role as a belligerent, alcoholic doctor whose bark is worse than his bite. Kurosawa intended the film as a condemnation of organised crime, though the young yakuza played by Mifune (in his first performance for Kurosawa) ultimately redeems himself before dying of tuberculosis. The film's dark themes (gangsters and corruption in post-war Japanese society, symbolised by a filthy, stagnant pond) are counter-balanced by a light musical score, much of which is diegetic. A slow-motion dream sequence, in which the yakuza is chased by his ghost after his coffin is washed up on a beach, seems rather incongruous, however.

Scandal, a didactic protest film like Drunken Angel, also stars Shimura and Mifune. An artist, played by Mifune, is photographed by the paparazzi (though they were not yet called paparazzi, as Scandal predates La Dolce Vita), and he hires a second-rate lawyer, played by Shimura, to sue the photographer's boss. Kurosawa initially highlights the opportunistic, sensationalist nature of tabloid journalism, though this is followed by a surprising shift in narrative emphasis: the lawyer becomes the central protagonist, and the film develops into a character study of this weak-willed though ultimately honourable man. In fact, the lawyer is the only fully developed character, with the others being rather one-dimensional. There is also an excess of sentimentality, with long carol-singing sequences and a sub-plot involving the lawyer's angelic, bed-ridden daughter.

The Kurosawa Retrospective runs from 6th to 19th January at SF World (CentralWorld). 6th January: Rashomon; 7th January: The Quiet Duel; 8th January: Judo Saga, The Most Beautiful, Judo Saga II, and The Idiot; 9th January: No Regrets For Our Youth, One Wonderful Sunday, Drunken Angel, and Scandal; 10th January: Stray Dog; 11th January: The Men Who Step On The Tiger's Tail; 12th January: Ikiru; 13th January: Seven Samurai; 14th January: I Live In Fear; 15th January: Throne Of Blood, The Lower Depths, and The Hidden Fortress; 16th January: The Bad Sleep Well, Yojimbo, Sanjuro, and Madadayao; 17th January: High & Low; 18th January: Red Beard; 19th January: Dodesukaden.

Two of Kurosawa's films will also be screened at the Japan Foundation after the Centennial Retrospective: Madadayao on 21st January, and Rashomon on 28th January. All screenings, at SF World and the Japan Foundation, are free.