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Your Favourite Foreign Language Films


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LAUTREC  1998 FRANCE 125 MINUTES by Roger Planchon with Régis Royer,Anémone, Claude Rich,Elsa Zylberstein.Anémone was nominated for best supporting actress at the Césars,2 wins for sets & costumes.Very good film about Henri de Toulouse Lautrec the great painter.Quite different than the 1952 Huston film,the brief scenes in the houses of pleasures are short but worth the Césars prizes just for these sequences.Also something I have never seen on film before or heard of, you see a couple of scenes where each waiter carry a huge cue card about 5 cards or 5 waiters makes the phrase 'Dancers must not forget to wear their 'trousers',funny.Probably in the early days of French Can Can.Good acting.8/10

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The Battle of Neretva (1969) Yugoslavia, Dir: Veljko Bulajic - Big, expensive (the costliest movie ever made in Yugoslavia) WWII epic. The very large international cast includes Yul Brynner, Orson Welles, Franco Nero, Hardy Kruger, Sylva Koscina, Curt Jurgens, Anthony Dawson, Milena Dravic, and Sergei Bondarchuk. The movie was released in various languages and various running times. The version I saw was mainly in German, and ran 145 minutes. I appreciated the effort, but I lost interest before it ended.  (6/10)

 

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Black Belly of the Tarantula (1971) Italy, Dir: Paolo Cavara - Giallo thriller about a mysterious killer targeting beautiful women. Cop Giancarlo Gianini is on the case. Also featuring Claudine Auger, Barbara Bouchet, Barbara Bach, Rossella Falk, Silvano Tranquilli, and Stefania Sandrelli. I liked this over-heated thriller, with an unusual score courtesy of Ennio Morricone, and a lot of skin on display.   (7/10)

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The Red Queen Kills Seven Times  (1972) Italy/West Germany, Dir: Emilio Miraglia - A series of mysterious murders occur, connected to a 100-year curse concerning a vengeful "ghost" called the Red Queen taking revenge for her own death. Featuring Barbara Bouchet, Ugo Pagliai, Marina Malfatti, Marino Mase, Rudolf Schindler, and Sybil Danning. This very uneven thriller attempts to combine the Gothic supernatural horror films of the 60's with the emergent giallo subgenre. There are a few memorable images to be found, but the story is muddled and the direction uneven. Sybil Danning is naked a lot, naturally. There are many versions of this film floating around, with differing running times and alternate titles, including Blood FeastHorror HouseFeast of Flesh, and The Corpse Which Didn't Want to Die. The uncut, Italian-language version is on Amazon Prime at the moment.  (5/10)

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8 hours ago, LawrenceA said:

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The Red Queen Kills Seven Times  (1972) Italy/West Germany, Dir: Emilio Miraglia - A series of mysterious murders occur, connected to a 100-year curse concerning a vengeful "ghost" called the Red Queen taking revenge for her own death. Featuring Barbara Bouchet, Ugo Pagliai, Marina Malfatti, Marino Mase, Rudolf Schindler, and Sybil Danning. This very uneven thriller attempts to combine the Gothic supernatural horror films of the 60's with the emergent giallo subgenre. There are a few memorable images to be found, but the story is muddled and the direction uneven. Sybil Danning is naked a lot, naturally. There are many versions of this film floating around, with differing running times and alternate titles, including Blood FeastHorror HouseFeast of Flesh, and The Corpse Which Didn't Want to Die. The uncut, Italian-language version is on Amazon Prime at the moment.  (5/10)

As I mentioned to jaragon some time ago, I'd like to watch these giallo movies again. They are a vague memory now. My friends and I used to go see them for the thrills and all that nudity, and I thought Barbara Bouchet was very beautiful.

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Seduced and Abandoned (1964) Pietro Germi, Italy - 6,5/10 - After a woman sleeps with the fiance of her homely sister, the father of the family must perform a shotgun wedding to save face. This is a satire on the Catholic society of southern Italy at the time and its notions of honor and family. Has some very funny scenes but at two hours it is a bit long and drags a bit in some areas. Also despite being a comedy has a very bittersweet pivotal moment that I think was supposed to be sad or touching but also I feel it wasn't handled particularly well as the tone stuck out from the funny scenes around it.

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DU RIFIFI CHEZ LES HOMMES AKA RIFIFI 1955 by Jules Dassin with Jean Servais,Carl Mohner, Magali Noel.Excellent  heist film,Servais is great,Jules Dassin gave himself a role as one of the thieves & the lover of Magali Noel,i would have done the same...8.5/10

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MADAME HYDE  by Serge Bozon 2017 aka Mrs Hyde Isabelle Huppert Romain Duris.Very good black-fantady comedy drama !!!! A demure, timid 'physics teacher named Géquil is mocked by her students  and collegues.then something happened ,  changing her forver. Huppert is excellente as usual, 7.75/10

 

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On 6/15/2020 at 8:38 PM, Sukhov said:

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Seduced and Abandoned (1964) Pietro Germi, Italy - 6,5/10 - After a woman sleeps with the fiance of her homely sister, the father of the family must perform a shotgun wedding to save face. This is a satire on the Catholic society of southern Italy at the time and its notions of honor and family. Has some very funny scenes but at two hours it is a bit long and drags a bit in some areas. Also despite being a comedy has a very bittersweet pivotal moment that I think was supposed to be sad or touching but also I feel it wasn't handled particularly well as the tone stuck out from the funny scenes around it.

I recognize this woman in I Knew Her Well,  an early film. So much did I like, that I watched it again right away. I was puzzled at first, but picked up the thread about half way through. I liked the second half so much that I had to see it from the beginning, and I stayed till the end. This is a very funny film about a clueless young girl who wants to break into films. Everybody uses her and she seems so blithely unaware. The film is full of great bits. Beautifully done. I have a feeling that the film is underrated. I heartily recommended. I consider this a great film.

///

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1996

and I’ve also seen …

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Dragon From Shaolin (1996) Sai Hung Fung, Hong Kong

Not to be confused with Dragon From Shaolin/Brawl Busters (1978) from South Korea.  This one is in my ‘also seen’ category because I felt that for a film made in 1996 it should have been much better.  It felt like it was made in the 60’s.  It’s an incredibly silly martial arts film worthy of the Three Stooges (without intended humor).  The set pieces feel lifted straight from the cheesiest of movie serials with plenty of maniacal belly laughs from the villains.  I did love the baddie with the ten foot pig tail which he whipped around cutting the hero to pieces.  The cheeseball dubbing added to the fun.  The copy I saw was from youtube and it featured some “deleted” talkative scenes which had German subtitles.  Someone went to the effort to amalgamate versions.  Some may get a kick out of this.  My wife gave up after three minutes.

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Blind Date (1996) Theo van Gogh, the Netherlands

This is really a series of vignettes about a damaged couple who pretend to meet for blind dates to work out their problems.  Not my cup of tea.  The characters are slightly more sympathetic in the remake with Stanley Tucci and Patricia Clarkson (2007).

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VIVA LA VIE 1984 by Claude Lelouch  with Jean Louis Trintignant Michel Piccoli Charlotte Rampling Anouk Aimée.Great cast,i have seen about 15 films by Lelouch, a strange story line with sci-fi elements ,not for everybody. 6.5/10

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LE COLONEL CHABERT 1994 by Yves Angelo with Gerard Depardieu Fanny Ardant Fabrice Luchini.From a story by Honoré de Balzac.Set in Paris 1817 a colonel assumed dead for many years comes back to meet his remarried wife.Very good drama. 7.5/10

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6 hours ago, nakano said:

LE COLONEL CHABERT 1994 by Yves Angelo with Gerard Depardieu Fanny Ardant Fabrice Luchini.From a story by Honoré de Balzac.Set in Paris 1817 a colonel assumed dead for many years comes back to meet his remarried wife.Very good drama. 7.5/10

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This was my overall  favourite film of 1994.

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3 hours ago, Bogie56 said:

This was my overall  favourite film of 1994.

I watched it last night without any expectations,,I was pleasantly surprised,a very good film & good acting.

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12 hours ago, nakano said:

LE COLONEL CHABERT 1994 by Yves Angelo with Gerard Depardieu Fanny Ardant Fabrice Luchini.From a story by Honoré de Balzac.Set in Paris 1817 a colonel assumed dead for many years comes back to meet his remarried wife.Very good drama. 7.5/10

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One of my favorite movies starring Gerard Depardieu and the first time I ever saw the great Fabrice Luchini. The Beethoven chamber piece  "Trio/ Ghost" was effectively used in showing the war dead. 

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L'HOMME PRESSÉ 1977 by Edouard Molinaro .Alain Delon Mireille Darc.During the 70,s Delon made many-too many -movies ,the gems are MR KLEIN in 1976 and this one in 1977.It was remade in 2005 -with his son Anthony in the same role, and in 2018.I have not seen the 2 remakes.A very special film about the modern world,to be in a hurry all the time, the pleasure of a collector in reality is owning.Delon's character do not like to waste time,saying a pregnancy is too long,7 months should be enough as the baby is complete !! And i'am not mentioning anything about his lovemaking! A great film.8/10

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La Gran Familia Española (Family United).  2013. Comedy. Directed by Daniel Sánchez Arévalo. With **** Gutiérrez, Antonio de la Torre,  Patrick Criado, Verónica Echegui.

Good, entertaining movie about the relationships of 5 brothers at a wedding party the day Spain plays the World Cup Final. I watched recently for the second time and  I liked it a lot better than the first time I watched it. It plays mostly for laughs; there are a few moments of drama that are well handled to avoid soapy melodrama. Good performances all around, especially by Antonio de la Torre and Verónica Echegui. **** Gutiérrez plays the brother who knows a big family secret.

The plot between the groom and the bride feels a bit rushed, and I hate the title , but overall it's a good movie.

 

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2002

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H (2002) Jong-Hyuk Lee, South Korea

The South Korean Police look like they have a copycat serial killer on their hands.  It’s a stylish film which I found a tad hard to keep up with but thankfully all the confusion comes together in a good surprise ending.

 

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Every Stewardess Goes to Heaven (2002) Daniel Burman, Argentina

It takes ‘meet cute’ to an absurdist level.  A man travels to Tierra del Fuego to scatter his wife’s ashes in the sound and then to commit suicide on a mountaintop.  There he meets the pregnant Stewardess who was on his flight who has chosen the same spot to end her life.  It was okay but just a bit too intentionally quirky for me.

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The 2019 Toronto Film Critics Association Best Picture and Best Foreign Film Award …

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Parasite (2019) Joon-ho Bong, South Korea

 

Other 2019 Foreign Film nominees …

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Pain and Glory (2019) Pedro Almodovar, Spain

 

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Portrait of a Lady on Fire (2019) Celine Sciamma, France

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Incubus (1966) Leslie Stevens, USA - 7.5/ 10-  Starring William Shatner as Marc. This film was like Bergman, Vampyr and Jerzy Kawalerowicz all put together. The demon Kia attempts to lure the devout Christian Marc to Hell by making him impious and lustful. When this doesn't work she gets the help of the Incubus. This movie was really good except for at the end it has an "if you kill him you are just like him" moral tacked on that I hated and thought was cheap (killing your sister's rapist is not murder). The dialogue is pretty stilted and odd even for Esperanto but that just added to the strange atmosphere. Some of the effects weren't all that great, with Kia rolling on the ground and grappling with an animal mask but that was one of the few lower parts. Overall this was a pretty good film and I liked it. I would recommend it. 

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10 hours ago, Sukhov said:

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Incubus (1966) Leslie Stevens, USA - 7.5/ 10-  Starring William Shatner as Marc. This film was like Bergman, Vampyr and Jerzy Kawalerowicz all put together. The demon Kia attempts to lure the devout Christian Marc to Hell by making him impious and lustful. When this doesn't work she gets the help of the Incubus. This movie was really good except for at the end it has an "if you kill him you are just like him" moral tacked on that I hated and thought was cheap (killing your sister's rapist is not murder). The dialogue is pretty stilted and odd even for Esperanto but that just added to the strange atmosphere. Some of the effects weren't all that great, with Kia rolling on the ground and grappling with an animal mask but that was one of the few lower parts. Overall this was a pretty good film and I liked it. I would recommend it. 

I have a copy of this but haven't seen it as yet.  I am curious, do you know the story behind the decision to shoot this in Esperanto?  And how do you think the actors such as Shatner did with that challenge?  Was it worthwhile?

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2 hours ago, Bogie56 said:

I have a copy of this but haven't seen it as yet.  I am curious, do you know the story behind the decision to shoot this in Esperanto?  And how do you think the actors such as Shatner did with that challenge?  Was it worthwhile?

I think it was shot in Esperanto to make it seem eery and give it an added appeal of being one of the few Esperanto movies. Shatner speaks in his usual hammy way and with a strong French accent but I thought he was pretty good in it. I would recommend this definitely. To me, it evoked Vampyr and Bergman's movies like the Seventh Seal and Persona. I don't see why this film has such a negative reputation aside from maybe some of the effects. 

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Two Monks (1934) Juan Bustillo Oro, Mexico - 5/10 - Two monks recount their stories of the time they fell for the same girl. This is only notable for being a rare pre-Rashomon multiple POV film. Some decent cinematography isn't enough to save it for me. Was dull and the image I saw was washed out and completely faded. Almost put me to sleep. Wouldn't recommend. 

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