2004 Top 10 - #2December 29, 2004
#2: Spring Summer Fall Winter...and Spring : Sublime, stunning, and emotionally powerful, Spring Summer Fall Winter...and Spring spent a number of months at the top of my "favorites" list for 2004 (until it was supplanted by my end-of-the-year #1). As long-time readers are aware, I tend to prize plot and characterization over visual splendor, but this is a rare occasion when both the story-related aspects and the appearance of the film are perfectly wedded. Spring... offers both visual and thematic poetry. The film follows the progress through life of a man who begins life as the youthful apprentice to an aging teacher. In the first chapter, he learns the value of all life. In the second, he discovers lust and love. In the third, jealousy and guilt. And, in the fourth, things have come full circle and the man who was once the student is now the teacher. By seeing an entire life unfold in less than two hours, we gain a greater appreciation for the changeableness of human nature, and how things we might once have thought to be unthinkable turn out to be true. The journey is sometimes sad, sometimes funny, often touching, and always magical. Kim Ki-duk's feature is currently available on DVD, and even the subtitle-phobic might consider giving it an opportunity. Although the movie is in Korean, there aren't many words, so the need to read should not often interfere.
The Two R's
There's an example of the MPAA's unfairness and irrationality on display in theaters for everyone to see. If you believe that using the ratings is a reasonable way to determine the moral suitability of a film, this may cause you to re-think your ...
It's always nice to have a helpful group of on-liners to show me the error of my ways. Such is the case when it comes to the poor, misunderstood group of Star Wars fans who are lining up in L.A., hoping to be among the first to file into the theater...
Play it Again, Sam
It has been said that Hollywood remakes films and TV shows because of creative bankruptcy. While there may be some truth to that statement, I view the situation in another way. Hollywood turns to remakes because filmmakers lack cojones. It takes ...