By Marcial Robiou
The summer blockbuster movie season is underway, but after the big explosions, fake breasts and plots so asinine that they seem like a 5-year-old wrote them in crayon, sometimes it’s good to go overseas where the characters are developed, the stories are intriguing and the films are, well, good.
I’M NOT SCARED
3 out of 4
This movie is a well-executed social commentary about the innocence of young children and will make you glad you live in a major urban area. One day while playing with his friends in the fields away from the small village where he lives, 10-year old Michael discovers an underground cave and its occupant; a young boy hiding from the world.
Like most 10 year olds, Michael is curious about the boy as to who he is and more importantly, why he’s there. No one knows anything about the child, but things start to go south when a couple calling themselves his parents show up to claim him and the entire town is caught in the middle of a life or death conflict. This is a beautiful film, even though its subject matter is far from it.
CITY OF GOD
4 out of 4
Busca-Pe recounts this true story of his life and how he became a photo-journalist in Brazil. It doesn’t sound interesting or exciting, but this movie is nothing but.
Starting from his days of living in the City of God, a housing project that would make Liberty City look clean, Busca-Pe is scared that he may end up like the other inhabitants– violent or dead.
It is through photography that he can tell the story of the rise of Lil Ze, the most notorious gangster in the town and what everyday life is like in certain parts of Brazil.
Nominated in 2004 for Best Director, Best Screenplay and a slew of other awards, this is one movie you will not stop talking about after you see it. It’s that good.
THE BLIND SWORDMAN: ZAITOCHI 2003
3 out of 4.
Zaitochi is a classic Japanese character who is the subject of more than 30 films. This time, he is a masseur who hides his swordsman skills; that is, until he happens upon a small village overrun by a warlord.
After some investigation, he agrees to help the Naruto sisters to avenge the deaths of their parents at the hands of the same warlord. The blood may be fake, but there’s lots of it and the sword-fighting scenes are first-rate.