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Archive for May 1st, 2010

Kai from The List asked me to take part in the latest instalment of “FILMS YOU DIDN’T KNOW YOU NEEDED TO SEE”. The project started back in December 2009 as “5 FILMS YOU DIDN’T KNOW YOU NEED TO SEE” when The List was starting out. The original list included Oldboy, for those who don’t know Oldboy is my favourite movie of the past decade so any list that promotes it is okay by me! He then followed it up a couple of months ago with “MORE FILMS YOU DIDN’T KNOW YOU NEEDED TO SEE” this time around he asked other bloggers to join in and tell us about three movies each. What Kai doesn’t know (unless he has read this) is that seeing how he got a group of bloggers together to promote movies they love is what inspired me to set up the Desert Island DVDs blog last month.

Bellow is my three chosen films. Check out the full post here on The List.

Intacto (2001): Directed by Juan Carlos Fresnadillo who went on to make 28 Weeks Later, Intacto is an original and intriguing drama/fantasy/thriller. Based on the premise that luck can be transferred like any other commodity. A group of gamblers take each other on in games of chance. The luckiest of them all is Samuel Berg (Max von Sydow), a concentration camp survivor who now runs a casino. Federico (Eusebio Poncela) works for Berg, a simple touch from him steals a persons luck. When the men have a falling out Berg takes Federico’s power setting in motion a chain of events that include the only survivor of a plane crash (Leonardo Sbaraglia) who is on the run and the policewoman chasing him (Mónica López) as well as an interesting twist on Russian Roulette. A beautifully shot and perfectly paced movie that offers an original concept that has been copied by Hollywood and Bollywood but never equalled.

Ginger Snaps (2000): Werewolves have never really taken off in movies the way vampires have, recent franchises Underworld and Twilight have featured both creatures but the vamps always get top billing. Once in a while there is a great werewolf movie unfortunately in the case of Ginger Snaps not many people saw it. Sisters Ginger and Brigitte Fitzgerald (Katharine Isabelle and Emily Perkins) are social outcasts with morbid fascinations. After being attached by a strange creature Ginger starts going through physical changes. The movie works on several levels: using lycanthropy as a metaphor for menstruation and puberty is pure geniuses giving the movie its greatest plaudits and denouncers; the pithy humour is as dark as the cinematography and perfectly balance the teen themes of alienation, despair and transformation; finally and in some ways the most important it’s a great horror movie. Utilising prosthetics and make-up rather than CGI Ginger Snaps has a real old-fashioned feel to it from a time when monsters looked and moved like real creatures, this gives the movie a gritty, earthy and visceral feel.

Buffalo Soldiers (2001): A cutting satire set on a US military base in the time leading up to the fall of the Berlin Wall. The movie was made in 2001 and premiered on 09 September that year, following the terrorist attacks two days later the general release was delayed by two years. Specialist Ray Elwood (Joaquin Phoenix) is a chancer, he is only in the army to avoid prison and is always on the lookout for an angle to make a fast buck. As base clerk he isn’t short of opportunities for black market deals, this is helped by the base commander, Colonel Berman (Ed Harris) being oblivious to what is going on. Things take a change for the worse when a new First Sergeant, Robert E. Lee (Scott Glenn) arrives, but there is a silver lining in the shape of Lee‘s daughter Robyn (Anna Paquin). Given world events in the time since the movie was made it isn’t as relevant as it was at the time, this doesn’t stop it from being well made, well acted and at times painfully funny.

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