4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days

4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days: The Poll

*** 1/2
** 1/2
* 1/2
No votes
No votes
1/2 *
No votes
No votes
Total votes: 20

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Postby Eric » Wed Mar 18, 2009 8:59 am

Damien is 100 percent right on The Lives of Others. Maybe only about 20 percent right on 4/3/2, but I will say that I think it's Lazarescu that's the true masterpiece of the two much-touted testaments to the Romanian renaissance and not this film.

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Postby Okri » Wed Mar 18, 2009 7:10 am

Ignore Damien, The Lives of Others is a great movie. Damien has Armond White for company in regards to the Mungui film.

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Postby Reza » Wed Mar 18, 2009 4:26 am

Damien wrote:This is a foreign film for those people who think The Lives Of Others is a great movie. Horsehit time. **

In other words you are saying that it's best to avoid The Lives of Others which is horseshit??

I was about to watch it.

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Postby Damien » Wed Mar 18, 2009 1:56 am

Given the acclaim by non-mainstream critics for this film, when I saw it the other day I was shocked by the utter banality of it. There's nothing going on cinematically, and it seems less like a movie than a reality TV episode. Anamaria Marinca is fine, but her character makes no sense. This is a foreign film for those people who think The Lives Of Others is a great movie. Horsehit time. **
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Postby Franz Ferdinand » Wed Mar 18, 2009 12:16 am

Very hard to watch, but utterly engrossing. I think it's more a commentary on friendship (or at least the complete dominance of one personality over another) than on illegal abortions or Communist regimes. It is just a brilliant, shattering movie all around, though I doubt I'd see it again any time soon. I gave it a ****.

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Postby Okri » Mon Apr 28, 2008 8:06 pm

He won with the LA critics.

I think I was surprised by how surprised I was by it's snub. Cannes winners are routinely ignored (anything by the Dardenne Brothers for starters) and the bleak subject matter/style (I saw this in September at a local film festival) would've been enough. But it was so notably acclaimed that I figured the voters would swallow their objections and nominate it. Silly me.

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Postby Mister Tee » Mon Apr 28, 2008 12:52 pm

Having finally seen this, I'm less surprised by the Oscar snub. The nominators tend toward the elderly, and the deadpan/security camera style of the opening half hour was almost certain to turn them off. With the "turn on a flashlight if you're bored" rule in effect, I imagine the screening room looked like the end of a Springsteen concert before the abortionist even appeared on-screen.

The film is so similar in style to Death of Mr. Lazarescu that, since they're both Romanian in origin, I assumed there must be some overlap in creators, and was surprised to find that not the case. Is the commonality the result of some Dogme-like movement sweeping the filmmakers of the country?

I confess it's not a style that could ever be my favorite -- I prefer more, I don't know, bravura, engaged filmmaking. But this approach had its virtues. The abortionist's more-or-less monologue is mesmerizing, and the near-claustrophobic scene in which we hear it evokes the oppression of the system as much as the plot and dialogue do. The overall matter-of-fact tone makes certain moments even more shocking than they might have been otherwise -- the discarded fetus above all, of course, but even just Marinca's bursting into the bathroom, fully exposed, makes us register her violation more strongly than a standard semi-rape scene would have. I also like that Mungiu never articulates for us just how hopelessly self-centered the roommate is -- never, that is, has it burst into a quarrel between the two women, but simply lets the evidence accumulate so we see it and wonder if Marinca will soon drop her once and for all, or whether she's the masochistic sort who can't get out from under such relationships.

Overall, I guess for me's it more fascinating and distinctive than what I'd call great. But I won't argue with those who feel otherwise.

FilmFan, I haven't checked, but didn't the abortionist either win or finish second with the LA critics? I agree his work was superb.

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Postby Okri » Mon Feb 18, 2008 9:00 pm

I voted ****. A masterpiece on all levels.

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Postby FilmFan720 » Mon Feb 18, 2008 8:03 pm

I just saw this this afternoon, and what a powerful film. I voted *** 1/2, only because I am still digesting the film and trying to come to terms with it. That shock shot is sitting uncomfortably with me. And the actor who plays Mr. Bebe is amazing...how come he hasn't gotten more notices?
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Postby Hustler » Mon Feb 18, 2008 6:53 pm

I´m going with ****stars One of the most enjoayble movies I´ve seen this year, with a superb Anamaria Marinca, unjustly snubbed this year from the actress race. Admirably filmed, with high suspense and remarkable performances.

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Postby abcinyvr » Thu Jan 31, 2008 9:05 pm

The first half hour or so bored the crap out of me and I would have walked out except for the fact that I was in a packed festival screening. I would have been too embarrassed to crawl over 7 or 8 people to get out. So I stayed and I am glad. About half way through that dreary dinner scene I realized that Anamaria Marinca had not said anything for a while and I began watching her. Then I woke up and realized what a magnificent performance she was giving.
I'm not surprised at all that the Academy turned their nose up at this film. They are known for storming out of screenings without giving the films a chance.

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Postby OscarGuy » Wed Jan 30, 2008 11:54 am

vote and discuss.
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