A Letter to Momo
Even scenes that work, such as a climax on a rain-soaked bridge, feel like they could have been trimmed by a few hand-drawn frames. Maybe…
Omar Moore adores movies. Born and raised in England, Omar later moved to New York City with his parents. He’s an attorney and a film critic.
Omar founded, and runs the movie review, celebrity interview and film
essay website The Popcorn Reel. He is a member of the San Francisco
Film Critics Circle and is the San Francisco Indie Movie Examiner for
Examiner.com. He has written for ERC Box Office.com.
Omar has also written songs and screenplays, one of which was a finalist in a Disney screenwriting contest many moons ago. “Vertigo” and “2001: A Space Odyssey” are the two best films he’s seen.
Mike Nichols' 1971 drama "Carnal Knowledge" is part of a canon of American films of the late 1960s to mid-1970s that mirrored the freewheeling sexual culture and society from which they emerged. These films ("Bob and Carol and Ted and Alice", "Shampoo" and others) examined varied notions of commitment, companionship and sex. "Carnal Knowledge", written by playwright, author and cartoonist Jules Feiffer, shows men talking casually, bluntly and frankly about women, their bodies, of strategies to get sex and of sexual belt-notching, though not necessarily much about the specific act of sex.
Michael Caton-Jones' 1989 film "Scandal" begins amidst an atmosphere of gaiety and innocence at the start of the 1960s. Bright, resplendent, sparkling visions burst before our eyes. Soon the tones will become darker. "Scandal" chronicles the multi-faceted sex scandal that erupted in the "you've never had it so good" British Tory prime minister Harold Macmillan's conservative government in 1963.
Long before Luis Bunuel's "The Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoisie" there was Jean Renoir's "The Rules of the Game," a 1939 classic tragicomedy about French upper crust society and its lack of morals. Billed as a "dramatic fantasy," Renoir's sharp-eyed satire was far ahead of its time, and took no prisoners, throwing both caution and political correctness to the wind.
Though filmed in beautiful, timeless black and white, "The Rules of the Game"(La Regle Du Jeu) is arguably the most colorful film ever made. It bursts with energy and life. The film is a multifaceted look at the emotional boundaries and battlefields of love and forbidden passions between men and women. The sexes openly hunt each other like prey, discussing their strategies, targets, regrets and longings with each other and amongst themselves. Mr. Renoir crafts a riveting anthropology of these vacant and trifling human creatures. Each is tinged with irony. Few have time for self-awareness or reflection.
From its incendiary opening to its somber but exultant conclusion, Spike Lee's grand and important film "Malcolm X" captures the life of a complex, charismatic and gravely misunderstood man who fought for human rights and justice for Africans and African-Americans. The film, based on The Autobiography of Malcolm X as told to Alex Haley, is arguably Mr. Lee's best and most universal film, and one of the great American film biographies.
For context, "Malcolm X" had extraordinary publicity leading up to its 1991 production. Numerous black activists in New York City and elsewhere had forecasted that Mr. Lee's film would not accurately depict the essence of Malcolm. "Don't mess Malcolm up," was a refrain the director heard over and over again.
In the wake of the disappointing "Shutter Island", it's especially gratifying to look back at Christopher Nolan's feature film "Memento" (2001), an indie mystery starring Guy Pearce as a San Francisco man in Los Angeles suffering from anterograde amnesia, or short-term memory loss.
Whether or not you believe that "Broken Embraces" is Pedro Almodόvar's best film, one thing cannot be denied: it's a film that so passionately celebrates cinema and the filmmaker's love for it.
Multiple stories frame a complex narrative in "Broken Embraces." Mr. Almodόvar trains his lens on Penélope Cruz, his muse. She plays Lena, a woman caught between passion and misery in the film, set in Madrid in the early 1990s and 2008. A film director (Lluís Homar) is blighted by the past while also recalling fond memories in the present as he hibernates in the afterglow of a vibrant affair with Lena, whom he directed during the nineties in a comedy. Back then he was Mateo Blanco. Now, in the early 21st century he is Harry Caine - a hurricane of regrets, mysteries and opportunities. There's Lena's husband Ernesto (José Luis Gόmez), a billionaire business magnate who has helped Lena pre-marriage and produces Blanco's film "Girls With Suitcases." Keeping Blanco in line and on schedule with the film is his agent Judit (Blanca Portillo), and that isn't an easy task.
Hello, I'm Omar Moore. I was born and raised in London, where I grew up before moving to New York City with my parents. After branching out in the Big Apple on my own for a number of years, I moved west to San Francisco. I love America and its promise. We all need to do our small part to make this great country even better for all. Where a film is concerned, it is never "only a movie." Images mean something. They have unyielding power and influence, whether in "Birth of A Nation", "Un Chien Andalou", "Night Of The Hunter", "Killer Of Sheep", "Persona", "Psycho", "A Clockwork Orange", "Blazing Saddles", "Straw Dogs", "Soul Man", "Chameleon Street", "Do The Right Thing", "Bamboozled" or "Irreversible". A filmmaker generally doesn't put images in a film if they are meaningless.