Monday, September 8, 2014

Lasse Hallström is a swedish director and screenwriter with a outstanding filmography. From My Life as a Dog, The Cider House Rules, Chocolat and Salmon Fishing in the Yemen, Hallström offers a very interesting and diverse collection of films. With this new movie he goes back to one of the essence of his craft, relationship thru food.

The Hundred Foot Journey tales the story of Hassan the oldest son of a indian family who loves to cook. He learned almost everything he knows thanks to his mom. A mob attack and firebombs over a election dispute the family restaurant is destroyed and Hassan mom is killed in the fire. The family seek asylum in Europe trying to find a better living. Finally they settle by accident in a small town in France. Papa decided to settle there by opening a indian restaurant across the street from a french restaurant owned Madame Mallory (Helen Mirren).

The film is a fun exploration of cultural clashes, family relationship and the values of working hard to be successful. Hallström delivers a great movie, with charming images of France as well the food.

The Hundred Foot Journey is entertaining.

A Most Wanted Man is the most recent film of Aton Corbijn and probably the last film we ever see from Phillip Seymour Hoffman. The film plot covers a very powerful story about a half Chechen, half Russian arrived to Hamburg looking for help in a islamic community. He claims that his father owns a fortune in a bank. US and Germany government are interested in this character using wiretapping and other techniques to hunt this guy.

Phillip Seymour Hoffman plays Günther Bachmann the leader of the operation following the most wanted man. His team will hunt and blackmail everyone to get all the information about this person before the americans get him first.

Rachel McAdams plays a civil lawyer trying to get political asylum to the Chechen rebel and Willem Dafoe plays a the bank president intrigued by all the money involved in this situation.

The film is suspenseful and beautifully shot, Aton Corbijn delivers a powerful film with a great assemble cast.

Cantinflas was a famous director, actor, producer and comedian from Mexico. Mario Moreno creates this role in the 30's while he was working at a circus. This role becomes a emblem for his country of origin but also a mega star for Spanish speaking territories, because all the films.

The film Cantinflas directed by Sebastian del Amo, attempt to tell this story using two simple plots. The making of the film Around the World in 80 days and the early days of Mario Moreno before he was just finding a way to make it. Óscar Jaenada plays Cantinflas bringing him back to life with interesting nuances such as his movements, voice tone and facial expressions. Michael Imperioli plays Mike Todd producer of Around the World in 80 days.

Cantinflas lack of a proper film structure, the movie tries to connect the young Cantinflas to the old one with parallel situations that goes from 30's then the 50's and back and forth. Amo tries to connects this two situations, but we see two different Cantiflas struggling in completely different circumstances. I assume the film have budget constrains because there is also a lack of locations in Mexico.

Sadly the film was really bad reviewed in America, what I mean sadly is US critics don't understand or will never understand who was Cantinflas or how he influenced the spanish speaking audiences.

Cantinflas is a decent film about the life of this great performer, unfortunately this film not represent fully his success and legacy.