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An Education

A Single Man

Les Ailes Pourpres

I haven’t seen this film, The Crimson Wing: Mystery of the Flamingos, but I was entranced by this trailer, with its stunning imagery and Coldplay-esque music by The Cinematic Orchestra.  Produced by Disney Nature, the documentary was filmed in northern Tanzania in a region never before shown on film.

If you liked Planet Earth or the LIFE series narrated by Oprah, I think you’ll like this.  It’s an awe-inspiring reminder of what an amazing creation our planet is.

Music by Cinematic Orchestra

Must See: The Diving Bell and the Butterfly

Have you seen this movie?  It was directed by Julian Schnabel, who once said that he’s “aiming for an emotional state, a state that people can literally walk into and be engulfed.”  This film certainly had that effect on me.
I like that the trailer doesn’t give too much away, so I won’t either.  I think it better allows you to be completely absorbed into the “emotional state” Schnabel describes.  And as a film with a heavy emphasis on story-telling (it is narrated by the main character, Jean-Do, but I won’t say anything more about that), I liked that I was lead into the narrative without any preconceptions.  Remember how when you watched the Princess Bride when you were little, you hated when they would break the story and go back to the grandfather and grandson at bedtime, because you were so into the story? This film evoked that same feeling of total immersion into a story.
It also won best director at Cannes, was nominated for four Oscars, and appeared on over twenty top-10 lists of 2007.  So if the little heart-strings argument above didn’t get you, I hope the critical acclaim will…
PS– Don’t give up if at the beginning you think it’s super slow.  It picks up.

Must See: Andy Goldsworthy documentary Rivers and Tides

If you’re an Andy Goldsworthy fan, I’d highly recommend this documentary on him.  If you’re not a Goldsworthy fan, I bet you’ll become one really quickly if you watch this film.  His work is pure wonderment.
Seeing Goldsworthy at work on his ephemeral pieces, made completely of found materials, is almost meditative just to watch.  I don’t know what I expected him to be like as a person, but I was enchanted in the documentary to see that he is so much a part of his work, and vice versa.  You can’t imagine him doing anything else with his life, and it seems to completely consume him, so that he is completely at peace while he’s working.

Le Mepris

Revisiting >> Fantastic Mr. Fox

Finally saw Fantastic Mr. Fox!  And it did not disappoint.  Think of the brilliance and detail of Wes Anderson’s directing style mixed with the wit and nostalgia of Roald Dahl’s writing, plus the charm of stop-motion animation, and you can imagine what a wonderful film this results in.

So anyway, now that I’ve seen it, I went back and watched these making-of videos again.  The one at top I’ve already posted once, but I think it’s worth watching again.  I’m just amazed at the detail and intricacy of how all the sets, props, and characters were created, shot, and animated.

There’s no way you can watch these and not want to see the film.

Does this convince you Wes Anderson is a genius or what?

Stop-motion animation!  Amazing!  24 stills for every second of film!  Also, they way they recorded the voices is pretty impressive… usually for animation work, actors just sit in a studio and read the lines… not for a Wes Anderson film!

They photographed every piece of furniture in Dahl’s house and created a miniature of it!

Ok now I want to watch it all over again.

Vanity Fair: “The Top Ten Most Stunning French Actresses”

Not in their same order, as I’ve moved Audrey Tautou, star of my favorite movie (Amelie), to the top of the list, but here they are.  Don’t French women just have a different quality than American women?  Something more naturally, effortlessly enchanting?
Above, Audrey Tautou, according to VF, at her sexiest in in Coco Avant Chanel (2009), so good.

Brigitte Bardot, “” in God Created Women (1956).
Eva Green, “” The Dreamers (2003)
Emanuelle Beart, “” Manon des Sources (1986)
Marion Cotillard, “” La Vie en Rose (2007).
Jeanne Moreau, Elevator to the Gallows (1958).
Sophie Marceau, “” La Fille de d’Artignan tied with Beyond the Clouds
Catherine Deneuve, “”, Belle du Jour (1967).
Aissa Maiga, “” Bamako (2006).
Isabelle Adjani, “” Queen Margot
VF slideshow here.

Two for the Road

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