Jean Luc Godard
This film will be any cineaste’s choice when making a favourite list. Michel (Jean Paul Belmondo) is a criminal on the run. He turns to his American girlfriend Patricia (Jean Seberg) for help and the drama is on. Breathless is where fans of classic Hollywood and hardcore art cinema lovers should go to find themselves. As for me, this is the film that tied me with cinema, forever.
This film has mighty acting performances by Hannah Herzsprung (Jenny) and Monica Bleibtre (Traude Krueger) in this story of music, violence and lesbianism. Traude works as a piano teacher in a women’s prison where she meets Jenny. Despite Traude’s attempts to tame the ever-rebellious Jenny, she does not concede and goes on to win our hearts and make her teacher proud.
This is a largely unappreciated film from master director Bharathan. A film that explores the clash between modernity and tradition, it tells the story of two brothers who are forced to accept a common wife by their mother. The film has plenty of ‘screen energy’ and it is amazing to watch how Bharathan captures the essence of the extraordinary among the most ordinary of lives.
The King and the Clown
The King and the Clown is a political satire, a transgender film and a period drama all at the same time. The film was the highest grossing film of the year in South Korea. A group of street clowns and a transgender starts to play for the despotic 15th century King Yeonsan. The tensions between the lead clown, the transgender and the king make for an intense tragic drama.
Wag the Dog
The darkest dark comedy I have seen, this film shatters many ideas about television media and PR campaigns. It is a harsh criticism on American election campaign strategies. Barry Levinson has managed to strike the elusive balance between documentary and fiction styles. Robert De Niro and Dustin Hoffman are just too good to watch.
Those that almost made it:
Soul Kitchen: Fatih Akin
MicMacs: Jean Pierre Jeunet
La Vie de Boheme: Aki Kaurismaki
The Man from Earth: Richard Schenkman
Hukkle: Gyorgy Palfi
Sachindev P.S. is a film enthusiast based out of Chennai.