Director: Jean Renoir Starring: Jean Gabin, Dita Parlo, Erich von Stroheim, Pierre Fresnay Running time: 114 mins Read the rest of this entry
Director: Steven Spielberg Starring: Jeremy Irvine, Emily Watson, Peter Mullan, lots of nice horses Running time: 146 mins Read the rest of this entry
This bold reimagining of how the allies won World War II is rife with Tarantino’s most enjoyable conventions: a plot unfolding via a series of vignettes, dialogue that spits and kicks, an ensemble cast. Christoph Waltz gives a standout performance as the “Jew Hunter” who conducts his terrible business with amiable ease. Tarantino does not shy away from writing repellant Fascist characters in his usual witty style but the titular avenging Basterds mean moral ambiguity is never a question.
Like: Nothing else.
Core truth: Nazis are bad.
After being imprisoned by the Nazis, a French Resistance activist dedicates all intellectual energy and physical resources to plotting and enacting his escape. Fontaine (François Leterrier)’s narrative provides the context to his largely silent actions, danger singing between the lines of his every rational word. A compelling and moving exercise in focused story-telling.
Like: Shawshank stripped to the bone.
Core truth: “You should look out for others. It’s a comfort.”