Miroljub Miki Stojanović
editor-in-chief in Film Center Serbia and film critic
|Hans Jürgen Syberberg
|Cries and Whispers
|A Touch of Zen
|The Last Hunt
|Céline and Julie Go Boating
|Michael Powell, Emeric Pressburger
Probably the great one!
The best movie of the Golden Age of Japanese Radical avant garde cinema, new horizons for modern cinema movements and strong voice of new era of moviemaking. Eros + Massacre is, on one side, unique film as a film language, with its consequences of times, nonlinear narration and visionary directing, on the other side, this film is kind of research in Japanese history, deeply involved with the main idea, to change traditional role of some historical Japanese figures, like anarchist Sakae Osugi, and his influence on anarchism in modern Japan… Visual beauty of Eros + massacre in incomparable. Unforgetable role of Mariko Okada, Yoshida's wife as the main actress…
Based on Richard Wagner opera with the same title, PARSIFAL is the crown of creation in the career of Hans Jurgen Syberberg. Syberberg's film is a no-man's land between opera, theatre and a radical kind of visionary cinema.
Syberberg is a prophet of the modern film era, and his way of direction is incomparable. His sense of film form is baroque. Edith Clever as Kundry is one of the greatest European film roles.
Cries and Whispers
According to François Truffaut, Cries and Whispers is an amazing kind of movie. ”Only the red colour, and that's all.”
Cries and Whispers is, in strictly film terms, a long journey into the night. Fascinating in visual style, Cries and wWhispers is a lesson in cruelty, but, at the same time, a film about broken family relations, tenderness and hidden emotions. Radical in film style, Bergman's movie is almost a kind of experimental cinema. There is no better long agony and dying in whole modern cinema. Can we say: for the first time: Bergman is a real nihilist!
One of the greatest films about painters of all time. It is so strange, because this films is directed by Hans Steinhoff, one of the very few Nazi party members, and one of the favourite film directors of the Nazi regime.
The influence of post-expressionism in this work is obvious. Ewald Balser as the old Rembrandt is true surprise but there's the great camerawork of Richard Angst, too. Final sequence (Rembrandt's death) is one of the most effective in history in cinema in treatment of real time. As a biographical movie, Rembrandt is ahead of its time, and Steinhoff's vision of the life and death of a great artist loses nothing until today.
A Touch of Zen
Essential wu xia, and absolutely one of the most spectacularly directed films ever. Every single detail of the movie is for an anthology. Various techniques in style of King Hu's art were fresh and new for that time – how he used jump cuts; the glimpsing effect is absolutely unique. A great role for Hsu Feng.
One of the most neglected movies in the whole history of cinema.
SURA is a work of genius! Toshio Matsumoto is, to be honest, a great experimenter, and one of the most original film directors in the rich history of Japanese cinema. Demons is a deeply dark, oneiric and haunting movie, almost like Greek tragedy or some Shakespearean plays. As the story of revenge, Demons is, according of its fun, "one of most experimental samurai films of all time”. When we recognise it as a horror, Demons starts to work like metaphysical saga of cruelty and no mercy ethics.
If somebody asks us about the true film heritage of 21st century cinema, there is no reason to hesitate to answer: Melancholia, directed by Lav Diaz. Lav Diaz is very alone on the contemporary film stage with his own film fascinations and cinema visions, and Melancholia is a typical example for his loneliness.
Very long, very slow really, and very, very expressive. These three words are absolutely enough to essentialise his priorities and kind of his film preferences. Angeli Bayam's performance is for the ages.
The structure of the film, with three different but in fact very similar parts in meaning, is very complex and under-seen in contemporary cinema. Melancholia is a film about the absence of hope, philosophical and politically essay, and the name for that Lav Diaz game is: facing the Phillippine's past.
The Last Hunt
Thirty years before its time, The Last Hunt is maybe the first anti-western in the history of genre.
Positions of the hero and his opponent are like in Greek tragedy. But, Last Hunt is not a conventional western.
His function is how to be subversive. The duel at the end of the movie, in a cold mountain, is one of the best final solutions in the history. There is now a duel! Bad opponent frozen to death. Russell Harlan as director of photography is magnificent. His visual style is a lesson in modernity, in the importance of colour process.
Céline and Julie Go Boating
David Thompson dedicates his Biographical Dictionary of Film to this film. According to him, Celine and Julie… is one of the key moments in modern film era. Jacques Rivette, after all these years, still remains a lighthouse and giant figure in the film pantheon. Celine and Julie is part fairy tale, partly post-modern narration about the relationship between imagination and reality, and where the fictionalised world is the winner. The movie without interruptions for its length (3 and a half hours).
Mystical landscapes in Himalayas and the fate of Anglican nuns are, for David Thomson, ”an erotic English film about the fantasies of nuns”. For the rest of the people and for some experts, the true importance of this film is the amazing camerawork of Jack Cardiff, winning an Academy Award for Best Cinematography.
Black Narcissus is a film about desire as well as its ironical and cynical contents. Black Narcissus is still an unusual, atypical film, an alien in the British film context of the 40s. If you watch it now, it still looks fresh, and you'll never find boring moments.