Wednesday, April 30, 2008


USA 2007

Details foxsearchlight

Seen 29 April 2008

A serious subject, teenage pregnancy seen through the pregnant mother's eyes. In this case, the unexpected pregnancy is handled with love, affection and strong family support. The whole town seems to be tolerant of this event, which helps the months pass by without any untoward incident. The baby is to be given away to a childless couple and we would have a fairy tale ending.

Not quite everyone lives happily ever after. There are obstacles along the way. But the main character, the unwed mother is the focal point of the movie and Ellen Page who played her was made for the role.

The subject matter might not find favour in less enlightened communities and the movie might not reach them. What a pity. Unwanted teenage pregnancies are an increasing trend and a more humane approach towards the issue would help both mother and child. This movie shows one way.

Sunday, April 27, 2008

The Photograph

Indonesia 2007

Details thephotographmovie

Seen 25 April 2008

Leave it to the Indonesians to lift a simple story line to a different level of expectation, emotion laden work of love. Each scene seems pregnant with the deeper feelings of each main character. An old photographer who lives in the past. A young mother who has to live in the present and thinking of the future.

The two meet and it is their slowly evolving relationship which captures the imagination. The main actors gave depth to their portrayal of the conflict within each of us. Letting go of the past does not mean we forget, living in the present and looking forward to a future does not negate the past.

The silent moments were gems.


South Korea 2001

Details imdb

Seen 8 April 2008

A different kind of love story. A Chinese girl who becomes the wife of a gangster on paper so as to legitimise her stay in South Korea. She has never seen her 'husband' except for a photograph. The story focuses on the husband's life in the early part of the film. Fail an, the girl, comes into the picture only about half way through. Then we get flashbacks, on both lives.

A girl, working hard to survive in a foreign land. A man, the ant worker for the neighbourhood gangster. How their lives intertwined in unexpected ways.

The love that develops is unique, to say the least. The girl did try to see the husband, but circumstances prevented that meeting. She, nevertheless, continues to carry the flame, the torch of love. This is pure love, born out of necessity, but over time developed into a genuine regard for the 'spouse'. The gangster himself, with his soft hearted true self, is touched by the gestures from the wife.

It has a happy ending in an unconventional way. They will meet in the end but in a different world altogether.

Mala Noche

USA 1985

Details janusfilms

Seen 6 April 2008

Walt's love for Johnny, an illegal immigrant from Mexico, brings an unexpected dimension to his humdrum ordinary life as a shopkeeper. The physical attraction for Johnny is never consummated. But Walt did sleep with Roberto, Johnny's friend, whereas Johnny is more comfortable with Walt when they are with others. In particular, Roberto becomes the missing piece in a triangle.

Even though Walt is in love with Johnny, the way he takes care of Roberto belies that feeling. But even the relationship with Roberto seems to be on unequal terms. In the end, tragedy struck the triumvirate.

Walt lives another day to face his demons in his own way.

Sunday, April 06, 2008

Yours Emotionally

UK 2006

Details yoursemotionally

Seen 5 April 2008

Another movie on lost love. In this instance, Ravi goes to India with a friend to sample the pleasures of the flesh at a gathering for gay men. The event is organised by a local who welcomes everyone to the love abode. Ravi falls for Mani but as circumstances reveal later, Mani has to follow the dictates of his culture. The director takes snippets of each issue that evolved.

The cultural differences in coming to terms with same sex relationships, the limits of a friendship when jealousy rears its head, the survival of a long term relationship between two men while staying put in a conservative society such as India, the realisation that love not just requires but demands sacrifices.