Movies

My Favorite Foreign Films

Times must really be desperate if I’m devoting an entire post to the foreign film genre. Did I even use the word ‘genre’ right? I feel like it’s interchangeable with the word ‘category’ but I could be wrong. Also, am I using those single quote marks correctly? I don’t even know who I am anymore.

Sooo yeah foreign films. This is a dry subject that I’m going to try to make fun and colorful! Most people roll their eyes at foreign films because they’re a lot of work:

A) They’re hard to find. You can’t just run to Target an pick up a copy of Gomorra. It’s just not gonna happen. They do have every season of Friends available though.

B) They require a lot of attention. You can’t play Candy Crush and read subtitles at the same time (much to my chagrin).

C) It’s hard to know which movie to choose when you’re unfamiliar with another country’s actors and actresses. It’s also difficult because you most likely haven’t heard much about any titles or watched any trailers for these movies. So how do you know where to start?

The words ‘foreign film’ mean different things to different people. To some, it simply means any movie with subtitles. To others it means films made by foreign directors. And a lot of people equate the term with anything that isn’t American made.

I personally feel like it’s a combination of all three. It definitely depends on the film, but not all movies with subtitles constitute a foreign film in my book. For example, I don’t think of Quentin Tarantino’s Inglourious Basterds as a foreign film even though most of the movie is subtitled. However, I feel like some movies that are spoken in English are foreign to me simply because they take place in a different country, like Slumdog Millionaire for example.

If you have no idea where to start, here are some of my favorite foreign films:

Pan’s Labyrinth (Guillermo del Toro, 2006) This magical tale takes place in fascist Spain in the 40’s. The main character is a young girl who moves with her mother into a new, grand house with storybook surprises around every corner. It’s a beautiful movie and a captivating story.pans-labyrinth-movie-screencaps.com-

The Magdalene Sisters (Peter Mullan, 2002) Taking place in the harsh Catholic society of Ireland, this movie shows the devastating struggles that women had to endure in asylum laundry houses. It’s unbelievable. A great story that you’ll never forget. (No subtitles)magdalene_sisters_verdvd

Raise the Red Lantern (Yimou Zhang, 1991) The fascinating story of the four wives to a powerful lord in 1920’s China. At just nineteen years old, Songlian is sent to become the master’s fourth wife and learns the ins and outs of her new home. Raise_the_Red_Lantern_DVD

Amélie (Jean-Pierre Jeunet, 2001) Amélie is just trying to make sense of the world around her. She wants adventure and something worth living for. Her escapades in Paris are sweet and fun to watch. She’s an enjoyable character that you can’t help rooting for.amelie_ver1

Bicycle Thieves aka The Bicycle Thief (Vittorio De Sica, 1948) The touching story of a man and his son looking for their stolen bicycles. The twosome run all over Rome in search for their bikes. It’s frustrating and sad but overall a good watch.bicycle_thieves_criterion_dvd_image

Let the Right One In (Tomas Alfredson, 2008) A true vampire classic, this story is about a lone female vampire living in the frozen tundra of Sweden. She befriends a young boy living in her neighborhood and protects him when he needs her help. A great and creepy story of what life must really be like for those sad vampire children.MV5BMjE1OTY2MTM5MF5BMl5BanBnXkFtZTcwNzQ5Mjc5MQ@@._V1._SX640_SY949_

M (Fritz Lang, 1931) This early black and white tale takes place in a German town where a child murderer is on the loose. Unable to catch him, locals keep their eye out for the criminal. It’s a great early cinematic production worth watching.M

Do you like foreign films? What are some of your favorites?

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Movies, TV

Adolescent Actors That Might Do Bigger and Better Things

When I was making this list, I started to realize that none of these gals are what I would call child actors. They seem to be young adults. In this modern time, actors and actresses must be believable no matter how old or young they are. No one cuts them slack just because they don’t have a lot of experience. For example, the actors in the brilliant show Full House were full of excuses. The Olsen twins could barely say their lines correctly, yet the world didn’t seem to mind because they were 10 months old. And no one seemed to mind that Uncle Joey (Dave Coulier) obviously had a severe mix of Down Syndrome and Tourettes. Anything would fly back then.

But now, now we’re in the market for serious performers. No excuses. No apologies. No justifications. The following is a list of youngsters that I believe will be the future of the Actors Guild of America.

Kiernan Shipka. Besides having one of the weirdest name ever, she’s one of the brightest stars around. For those of you who watch Mad Men, you know her as Sally Draper, daughter of Don and Betty. For those of you who don’t watch Mad Men, do you live under a rock? Stop reading blog posts and go catch up on the seasons you’ve missed. Sally is one of the best characters not only in Mad Men, but in television history. Kiernan plays her perfectly. I know she will go on to do bigger and better things.

Hailee Steinfeld. “They tell me you’re a man with true grit.” That’s the only line I remember her saying from the trailer. I never actually saw True Grit, but she looked awesome in it. Hailee also has a relatively normal name for someone in Hollywood. The moment when I knew Hailee would achieve greatness was when I saw her dress at the Academy Awards last year. What a cutie patootie! I’m not sure if she’s pretentious or if it’s just because she’s 15, but I feel like she’s a pretty confident person. However, if she becomes too confident, she will be transferred to my most hated celebs list. Be wary, Hailee.

Saoirse Ronan. Really? No normal person knows how to pronounce Saoirse. Apparently it’s SEER-shuh. Like, I get that you’re from Ireland, but just stop. But Saoirse really makes up in the talent department for what she lacks in the name department. Her resume includes big films like, Atonement, The Lovely Bones, Hanna, and The Way Back. I’ve only seen Atonement and Hanna, but I really liked both of them a lot. Hanna is pretty weird, but I never found myself bored. And Atonement is awesome. I definitely recommend that. According to IMDB, Saoirse has 4 movies coming out in 2013. Either her parents are slave drivers or….Nazis.

Chloe Grace Moretz. For some reason she has an umlaut above the ‘e’ in her name, and she also had to add her middle name into her title. What is it with these people? No one else is named Chloe Moretz. You don’t have to make it all fancy with your middle name. This isn’t facebook. Anyway, Chloe’s face kind of bothers me, but she seems like someone who will be a great actress eventually. I don’t think she’s on the same level as the others quite yet. But i respect her because she’s worked her way up unlike the aforementioned girls. Chloe did a lot of kids shows and voice overs. She’s been in movies that aren’t that popular. She was barely in 500 Days of Summer. My favorite movie of hers was Let Me In, a remake of the Swedish film Let The Right One In. A true vampire flick. I highly recommend both versions since the remake was basically a carbon copy. And now she’s in another vampire movie, Dark Shadows. Can we just wrap up the whole vampire thing now?

Can we all agree that she has a weird face?

Elle Fanning. Hopefully she’ll make it farther in life than her dumb sister Dakota. The only movie I remember seeing Elle in was Super 8 which wasn’t that good, but she definitely showed her acting skills. Apparently she was in The Curious Case of Benjamin Button. I guess she wasn’t very memorable. Dakota must be pissed because her sister is climbing up the ladder faster than she did. The one thing that I don’t like about Elle Fanning is that she always smiles with her mouth closed. Someone must have told her that her teeth were gross and scarred her for life or something. Definitely look out for her in 2014 in Maleficentas Princess Aurora. (Maleficent is played by Angelina Jolie! Yessssssssssss.)

Always the pursed lips!

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