Few movie reviewing pleasures are as satisfying as being able to sing the praises of Catherine Deneuve. Even more stunning today than she was when she first burst onto international movie screens as a 60s vixen and sexpot, she is still working and continues to fascinate movie audiences around the world. It is impossible to believe she is almost 70 years old, so recently does her reign as France’s leading female star seem to have risen. No other French actress has taken her crown. Over the years, she has allowed some (Anna Karina, Genevieve Bujold, Juliette Binoche) to borrow it for a while, but even they knew it had to be given back, that it was only on loan. Deneuve, with her aloof translucence, her continental cool was and is an international force. Irresistibly beautiful on the outside, she also exudes within a searing intelligence and a dignity that places her on higher planes than those occupied by actresses who are merely pretty to look at. After decades of moviemaking, she remains France’s most delectable export. Like all the greatest movie stars, there is something eternal about Deneuve. Not only is she not of this world; she seems to exist beyond the world of cinema. When you die, you half-expect to find her in some corner of the Cosmos, holding court in rarefied air. Continue reading →
The power of prophecy and influence drives Akira Kurosawa’s revitalized Macbeth in Throne of Blood. In the midst of feudal Japan, Washizu (played by Kurosawa regular, Toshiro Mifune) bears witness to the complete corruption and dissection of himself by his own hand. Kurosawa’s grim look at the sheer power of outside influence strikes at the heart of Throne of Blood, truly expressing what is sacrificed when one loses himself in another’s foreboding. The intricate maze of self-deception, paranoia and selfishness leaves little to wonder at beside the rigid forest that guards Spider Web Castle.
“You probably think this world is a dream come true… but you’re wrong.”
From the minds of Henry Selick (The Nightmare Before Christmas) and Neil Gaiman (Sandman, American Gods), with musical accompaniment by They Might Be Giants comes Coraline, a dark, enchanting fable about the worlds we see and the worlds we want.