Friday, December 26, 2008

8 Movies That Changed My Life (Part 1 of 2)

As 2008 winds down, I wanted to shed light on 8 different films, which I watched this year, that changed my life or greatly affected me in some way. I strongly suggest that all readers check some of these movies out. These are not in any particular order. (This post is part one of two posts)

Gus Van Sant's 2003 film, Elephant is one of the most powerful and chilling films I have ever seen. The film follows a number of students throughout the halls of their high school for roughly 10 minutes each, and as each character's life intertwines with each other, you get closer and closer to the student. Though the kids fall into their own stereotypical groups - jocks, outcasts, nerds, artists - they all meet the same fate when two students arrive at school fully armed and begin to senselessly murder any student who comes across their path. Although gruesome and creepy, Elephant is dynamic and beautiful, and is unquestionably a film that will make you think.
A 1998 movie which was panned by critics and viewers alike, The Object of My Affection was a truly touching movie. The movie really takes off when George, a gay school teacher, moves in with Nina, a social worker, after he is dumped by his then-boyfriend. When Nina finds out she is pregnant, instead of asking the baby's father to marry her, she asks George if he would be the father. The relationship between Nina & George is truly from the heart and it remains one of the most beautiful love stories I have ever seen. To avoid giving everything away, let me just say this - the ending is unexpected but thoughtful, the struggle that Nina faces is an honest result of impossible love, and the film in its entirety is non-traditional and touching. It gives me a whole new look on the power of love & friendship.

Two wonderful French actors, Romain Duris & Louis Garrel, star in 2006's indie Dans Paris from director Christophe Honore. Dans Paris (Inside Paris) starts with Paul, who, after splitting up with his girlfriend, moves back in with his father and brother, Johnathon, and continues to slip roughly into a deep depression. Johnathon, a lazy and unclean part time student, full time womanizer spends his time sleeping around and unsuccessfully cheering up his brother. The entire family is equally affected by the previous suicide of their sister Claire on top of all else they have to deal with. After each brother jumps off a bridge, witnesses a visit from their mother, and reconnect with some old friends, they come to a realization about human struggle and coping with loss. Dans Paris is an extroadinary tragic-comedy with terrific acting and an insightful, in depth look at human frailty, family bonds, and dealing with what life throws at you.

Say hello to two of the most quotable people of all time: Little Edie & Big Edie. The only documentary to grace this list, Grey Gardens follows the typical day in the life of this mother-daughter team. "Big Edie" Bouvier Beale was Jackie Kennedy Onassis's aunt, and "Little Edie"Bouvier Beale was her cousin. They lived in a crumbling mansion in New York which was overrun by cats and underwent a series of inspections, which brought these two women into the public eye. A tad eccentric, these women dance and sing their way throughout the documentary and you can't help but feel a connection. The two Edies can teach you so much about life and are a great reminder that it's okay to be a little bit, uh, out there.

Part two of this series will be coming soon, along with a new series of my favourite male models.


pocketmonsters said...

elephant was a little too cloudy to make a definitive point, it was like a long music video

i'm probably going to rent object of my affection now though

chloe said...

yeah, all these movies that I'm featuring people either loved or disliked, it seems like. I guess I just really loved 'Elephant' because it was so dynamic and I felt like it was drawn together beautifully.

L.P. said...

Gus Van Sant is so fantastic. I love almost everything he does. Although it's been said he made a royal mess out of Physco, I think I'll just avoid that one.

Wendy said...

I've actually never seen these. I should.

Blair said...

Yeah, it is Cole Mohr in the photo...he's kind of amazing, right? :)

Oh, it probably is the 2007 campaign, whoops!

Isabel said...

I love Grey Gardens - their mother daughter bond was fascinating. On the other hand, I could not stand Elephant. I just didn't "get" it.

drunkgiraffe said...

Have you watched all films with Garrel?! I love him - his photo drew my attention to your blog:) I'm crazy about "The Dreamers", have you seen it?! If yes, did you like it? Kisses:*