La Fid?lit?

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Fidelity (Fidelite) [ NON-USA FORMAT, PAL, Reg.2 Import - Spain ] (buy from Amazon)

Type: Drama, France 2000

Director:Andrzej Zulawski

My rating: 3

Key actors/actresses:
Sophie Marceau .... Cl?lia
Pascal Greggory .... Cl?ve
Guillaume Canet .... N?mo
Michel Subor .... Rupert MacRoi
Magali No?l .... La m?re de cl?lia

Story:
Clelia is a young photographer with her own style. Her photos are all blur, it reflects how she perceives the world. She met Cleve, son of a book publishing business, they got married but she is attracted to another guy, she isn't unfaithful but she cannot resist either. Life around her is complicated and so are the people...

My review:
Not my type of movie, many characters that inter-connected with Clelia very unsure about how she feels and her boyfriend messes up with some gangsters which bring a very strange angle to the entire stories.

Queen Margot

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Queen Margot (La Reine Margot) (buy from Amazon)

ype: Drama, France 1994

Director:Patrice Ch閞eau

My rating: 4
Key actors/actresses:
Isabelle Adjani .... Margot
Daniel Auteuil .... Henri of Navarre
Jean-Hugues Anglade .... Charles IX
Vincent Perez .... La M鬺e

Story:
Aka Reine Margot, La
The Massacre of St. Bartholomew in France happened on the evening of 24 Aug 1572, a bloody religious war. A pre-arranged wedding between Margot de Valois, sister of the immature Catholic King Charles IX, and the Hugenot King Henri of Navarre was supposed to ensure peace. The inevitable finally happened

My review:
A very powerful recount of a terrible historical event. The ugly side of power struggle and religious conflict. The killing scenes are very vivid...

The Emperor's Journey

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March of the Penguins (Widescreen Edition) (buy from Amazon)

Posted by Irene

Type: Documentary, France 2005

Director:Luc Jacquet

My rating: 4
Key actors/actresses:
The Emperor Penguins

Story:
A story of penguins' life in Antarctica from winter to summer.

My review:
The beautiful scenery in Antarctica and lovely penguins are valuable and attractive. I like to imagine how the penguins live, give birth and bring up their babies in difficult situations. Quite inspiring!

The Fabulous Baker Boys

Posted by Ryoko

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The Fabulous Baker Boys (buy from Amazon)

Type: Drama, USA 1989

Director:Steven Kloves

My rating: 5
Key actors/actresses:
Jeff Bridges: Jack Baker
Beau Bridges: Frank Baker
Michelle Pfeiffer: Susie Diamond
Jennifer Tilly: Monica Moran

Story:
Frank and Jack Baker were professional musicians who played the piano at small clubs.
One day they auditioned female singers and decided on Susie Diamond.
After Susie joined this piano duo, they got good fame and re-evaluation; however, some kinds of discord among them came out to the surface.

My review:
I was a student at university when I watched this film for the first time by the recommendation from my boyfriend of those days. At that time I thought this was just a romantic movie, however, now I think it is not just a love story but a drama about persons who tried standing on their own feet.
Michelle Pfeiffer is beautiful and charming in this film. And sexy. Her performance is so vivid. Moreover, she?s a good singer: I really like her singing?More than you know?, ?Ten cents a dance?, ?Can?t take my eyes off you?, ?Makin' Whoopee?, ?My funny valentine?.

Needing You

Posted by Ryoko

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Needing You (buy from Amazon)

Type: Comedy Romantic, Hong Kong 2000

Director:Johnny To

My rating: 3
Key actors/actresses:
Andy Lau: Wah
Sammi Cheng: Kinki

Story:
Wah is a computer programmer and Kinki is a secretary in the same company. They didn?t get along well at the beginning, but gradually they got to care about each other.

My review:
I watched this film when I went toward France from Japan via Hong Kong by Cathay Pacific. I cannot understand Chinese, but its subtitle was simple English, so luckily I could enjoy the whole story. I laughed a lot and was never bored on the way to Hong Kong from Narita.
Kinki is a young, moody, cheerful, cute girl and its play by Sammi Cheng is nice. I do not like romantic comedies, but this movie is one of my favorites! My rating is 3 stars but it is nearly 4 stars in fact.

Swimming Pool

Posted by Ryoko

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Swimming Pool (Unrated Version) (buy from Amazon)

Swimming Pool

Type: Suspense, Britian 2003

Director:Francois Ozon

My rating: 3
Key actors/actresses:
Charlotte Rampling: Sarah Morton
Ludivine Sagnier: Julie
Charles Dance: John Bosload

Story:
Sarah Morton, a British popular mystery author, was tired of London. John Bosload, her publisher as well as her boyfriend, asked her to stay at his home in Luberon, in the south of France. She accepted his offer because she needed a kind of inspiration for her new novel. However, Sarah had to stay there with John?s French daughter Julie suddenly. Julie?s lifestyle was reckless, wild, and sexual, so Sarah could not stand it and her life in Luberon was disturbed unexpectedly.

My review:
There are not many characters (that?s one of the reasons I like this movie), so you may guess that this film is easy to understand?but my answer is ?No?; I still wonder how to understand the end of story, which was beyond my imagination. I like this kind of closing, because my imagination can go everywhere, and this story must let it go at that.

Iron Ladies(Satree-lex)

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Iron Ladies (Sub) (buy from Amazon)

Type: Comedy, Thailand 2000

Director:Youngyooth Thongkonthun

My rating: 4
Key actors/actresses:
Jesdaporn Pholdee .... Chai
Sahaphap Tor .... Mon
Ekachai Buranapanit .... Wit
Giorgio Maiocchi .... Nong
Chaicharn Nimpulsawasdi .... Jung
Kokkorn Benjathikoon .... Pia
Shiriohana Hongsopon .... Coach

Story:
A true story of a Thai male volleyball team that won the national championship in 1996.

My review:
Very funny indeed!

Shinobi - Heart under blade 甲賀忍法帖

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Shinobi Heart Under Blade (buy from Amazon)

Type: Drama, Japan 2005

Director:Ten Shimoyama

My rating: 3

Key actors/actresses:
Yukie Nakama .... Oboro (Iga)
J? Odagiri .... Kouga Gen-no-suke (Kouga) (as Joe Odagiri)
Tomoka Kurotani .... Kagerou (Kouga)
Erika Sawajiri .... Hotarubi (Iga)
Kippei Shiina .... Yakushiji Tenzen (Iga)

Story:
During the Tokugawa era, the two ninja clans Iga and Kouga have existed for over 400 years, always been opposing each other and separately have been helping different regimes in power. Under a cease-fire agreement, the two clans have not been fighting each other. The two future leaders of the clans, Oboro (Iga) and Gen-no-suke (Kouga) are in love with each other. Little did they know that the cease-fire has been uplifted by the Tokugawa regime because, he wants to exterminate the two clans by asking them to fight one another, because during the peaceful time, Tokugawa feels that the ninjas are themselves a threat to him. Each clans has to send 5 people to fight, Oboro and Gen-no-suke are the leaders of each team. Can the lovers escape their destiny or would they have to fight each other to save their own clan?

My review:
Even more tragic than Romeo and Juliet, a very sad story. Ninja stories are always facinating, Hollywood has tried to make its own version of Japanese ninja movies, but never quite capture the essence and its mystery. Glad to see a well film ninja movies from Japan, the land of ninja itself. However, I don't think there was enough, ninja fight scenes in the movie and the actions go so fast, leaving the audience the feeling of wanting more. Each ninja has their own secret weapon and it gets better and more powerful as the story unfolds.

It has an unexpected twist in the end! But I won't spoil it here.

Swallow tail Butterfly

Type: Drama Thriller, Japan 1996

Director:Shunji Iwai

My rating: 2
Key actors/actresses:
Hiroshi Mikami .... Feihong Chara .... Glico Ayumi Ito .... Ageha Yosuke Eguchi .... Ryou Ryanki

Story:
This is a story about "Yen Town", the name given to illegal immigrants in Japan who view Japan as a country of to earn big and fast money, they call Japan "Yen Town" and they themselves are being called "Yen Town". The film describes this illegal immigrants as criminals, gangsters who engage in various crimes.

My review:
The movie has multiple threads which was hard to follow. All in all, this is not my cup of tea.

Shall We Dance

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Shall We Dance? (buy from Amazon)

Type: Comedy Drama, Japan 1996

Director:Masayuki Suo

My rating: 4

Key actors/actresses:
Koji Yakusho .... Shohei Sugiyama Tamiyo Kusakari .... Mai Kishikawa Naoto Takenaka .... Tomio Aoki Eriko Watanabe .... Toyoko Takahashi

Story:
A middle age man with wife and kids and a steady job as an accountant is looking for a new hobby. Not really going through a mid-life crisis, just looking for some changes. He sees from the train a dance school on his way home every night and there is this beautiful lady dancer practicing near one of the windows at the dance school. His mind begins to wonder if taking dance classes will reignit his boring life.

My review:
Shall we dance is a very light and easy to appreciate type of movie, I think man in the late 40s will especially reasonant with the story (ha ha I am not one of them yet). At points, the movie is also very humourous and will put a big smile on your face. The male director (also play a small character in the movie) is surprisingly very sensitive in expressing the emotion of the characters. Highly recommended.

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