Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Two Movies in less than 24 hours

Two movies in 24 hours. I have an openness to stories, especially visual stories makes this a heavy trip along with what I'm reading. Now and then I've read of movie lovers who go to three or four movies ion a kind of orgy, say on a dreary Sunday in NYC -- with many theaters close together in some areas and showings running from about 11:30 a.m. to 11:30 p.m. that is entirely possible with time out for a meal somewhere in the middle. Those film lovers are not people who go to every bit of drek, they try to see decent movies. Doesn't work that way for me. Two in less than 24 hours makes me feel somewhat bludgeoned, largely by myself.

Last night's movie was Mozart's Sister, in French at the nearest art film theatre. I always go to movies that have something to do with classical music. Of course, I knew that Nannerl was very talented and denigrated by Papa Leopold who used the two children like performing ponies to earn his living. This movie focuses on Nannerl's relationship with members of the Sun King's family, a princess and the Delphine, both of whom are enchanted by Nannerl. The story seems to be mainly fictional. The actress looks too old for the role but she is the daughter of the director. Most scenes were mediocre and the story light. But I loved a scene in which Nannerl starts singing one morning, Woflie joins in, they begin singing counterpoint. "A keyboard!" Wolfie cries. They run to a harpsichord, she playing the lower keyboard and he the higher. They compose together, apparently reading one another's minds as jazz musicians do, and both in a state of contained ecstasy. Beautiful!
Today's movie was made in Belgium called Illegal. It was about a Russian woman who is an illegal alien and is picked up on the street in a routine document search. She is put in a detention camp and won't talk. She has a 12 year old son who is being taken care of by a friend -- sort of. She's spunky and determined and she's befriended by a black woman who regularly gets beaten up by the guards [unpreachy reference to racism, of course]. When our heroine is to be deported she fights hard and causes a riot on the airplane, then is beaten badly, but sneaks out of the hospital ward and managed to get home to her son.

Such detention camps exist, not only in most European countries for illegal aliens, they exist in America also. People all over the world are moving from country to country seeking safety, work, a better way of life and countries are handling it with bureaucratic ugliness everywhere. This movie won a major prize at the Cannes Film Festival. The consensus was that it won not because it is fine film making [the critics think it's too much like an American TV special] but because this is a political problem that needs to be addressed.

No comments: