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At the Movies: Melancholy and Melodrama

December 6, 2011

One of the many things I’m extremely judgmental about is cinema.  Who knows why I’m totally at peace watching nearly every reality show on Bravo, and yet totally discerning (er…more like discriminating) when it comes to what I see on the silver screen?  I guess it’s because the very nature of television feels disposable to me. With television, you’re in the privacy of your own home while going to the movies is an event.  Thus, I want to be entertained.  I want to be moved.  I want the venture to feel purposeful.

That said, I think it’s a great time to do another post (for my post on the spring/summer’s best movies, go HERE) about the latest and greatest movies hitting theaters this winter.  A few of these I’ve already seen, and a few I can’t wait to catch.  Check out some of the trailers below for inspiration for your next matinee day.  :)

Melancholia (in select theaters now)

Seeing this movie is a true test of willpower.  In keeping with tradition in his body of work, Lars Von Trier’s latest film is inexplicably sad and loaded with tangible anxiety.  Doesn’t sound too appealing, but the stunning imagery is Von Trier’s best yet and the performances by Kirsten Dunst (I know, right??) and Charlotte Gainsbourg make Melancholia too beautiful, too exquisitely tragic to miss.  I guarantee you’ve not seen an apocalyptic movie like this one; as surreal as it is relatable.

 

Shame (in select theaters now)

Steve McQueen’s (not that one) latest film is not going on my top ten list, and certainly won’t be a movie I’d ever see again, but that doesn’t mean it’s not brilliant in its own right.  The controversial movie seriously earned its NC-17 rating, not just for the frontal nudity and explicit sequences, but the squirm-inducing intensity and darkness of its content.  The film is stylized in a minimalist way, with iconic memorable cinematographic moments and an incredible performance by Michael Fassbender.  I mean, who else could play a sex addict with such charisma but still such shame?  Pun intended.

 

Sleeping Beauty (in select theaters now)

Let’s just say, this ain’t no Disney version of the classic fairy tale.  I’m intrigued to see this creepy, stylized film by first-time director (and novelist) Julia Leigh, though I have a feeling it might be as hard to watch as the aforementioned ones.

 

The Artist (in select theaters now)

I have a tendency to not want to see a movie if everyone is talking about it, and that philosophy almost crossed this contemporary silent film off my list.  However, after the heaviness of the last few flicks I’ve seen (um, see above) I think I need a little good old-timey fun at the movies and it looks like this might be exactly that.  Tap dancing, charismatic dogs, and…was that John Goodman?  Okay, sign me up.

 

EAMES: The Architect and the Painter (in select theaters now)

I can’t say no to an art documentary.  That said, this one about the highly influential design duo of Charles and Ray Eames looks like it could be just as interesting to an art nerd like me as to someone who might no little or nothing about their breadth of work.  I mean, who doesn’t wish they lived in the 1960′s in Venice Beach, working for these two weirdos?  I know I do.

 

 

 

 

 

2 Comments leave one →
  1. Michael Samuel permalink
    December 6, 2011 12:38 am

    Fantastic article. Liked your comments on Melancholia

  2. December 16, 2011 3:22 am

    I know what I’m doing this weekend! Well, besides my little ‘warming. See you soon, vintage babe!

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