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Frdric H (ca) wrote: An average comedy with many comedians but it doesn't help the movie though the idea is interesting.
Nate Z (br) wrote: Who knew that Romania, of all places, was the wellspring of tremendous artistic talent? Over the last five years or so, Romania has been home to a burgeoning renaissance of daring, provocative, and naturalistic films, its own New Wave of Eastern-bloc cinema. Some of these gems include The Death of Mr. Lazarescu, 12:08 East of Bucharest, the understated Police, Adjective, and the award-winning, grueling abortion drama, 4 Months, 3 Weeks, and 2 Days, winner of the prestigious 2007 Cannes Palme d'Or. Director/co-writer Radu Muntean's Tuesday, After Christmas is a worthy entry into the ever-growing canon of stupendous Romanian cinema. It and many other of these Romanian renaissance pictures are available via Netflix streaming, so if you're unfamiliar with these great movies, now is as good a time as any to play catch-up. Paul (Mimi Branescu) is a middle-aged man coming to a crossroads at his life. He loves two women: Adriana (Mirela Oprisor), his wife of ten years who they share a young daughter, Mara; and Raluca (Maria Popistasu), a dentist in her late 20s. His mistress has accepted her role but wouldn't mind reaching out to Paul's daughter. Paul is unhappy with his wife but is he unhappy enough to come clean about his infidelity? Over the course of a few days around Christmas, Paul will decide which woman he will stay with. This movie is something of a small miracle in how naturalistic it plays. The dialogue is splendid, reverberating with the rhythms of real speech but also giving weight to the characters, fleshing out personalities, relationships, and penetrating subtext. I was luxuriating in the dialogue and its nuances. To some people Tuesday, After Christmas will be a boring movie, but for me I was on the edge of my seat thanks to the dialogue and characterization. If ever Richard Linklater (Dazed and Confused, Waking Life) were to make a Romanian film, it would be this. Like Linklater's Before Sunset, watching these actors speak such truthful, personable, revealing dialogue is like listening to birds sing. It's such a pleasure for the ears. Take the first scene, a sexy, nearly six-minute unbroken shot of a couple in bed. Over the course of those six minutes Muntean and his actors peel away the layers, revealing more and more of these characters and their situation. We can tell from their playful, affectionate, and relaxed manner that they are lovers. Also the fact that they are naked seems rather telling. Then we learn who they are naturally. He pretends to take offense at her admission of other lovers' penis sizes, and pretends to bite her nipple, which makes her examine his teeth and chide him that smoking harms his teeth. Right there we learning about her sexual past, his mixed feelings about it, their teasing relationship, and her profession. And then, of course, we learn that the man is married and this is the "other woman." That six-minute scene is near perfection. It sets up the characters, the conflict, and not a single point felt false or contrived. The rest of the movie follows suit, from the mundane moments of married life (rubbing a spouse's feet) to the quiet storm of indecision. There isn't a wasted line of dialogue or a camera shot in this entire movie. Part of that is because Muntean deals in extremely long takes. There isn't one camera shot that lasts under a minute; most of the camera shots last for several minutes, some approaching double digits. In other hands, the glacial pace of the camerawork would make the movie feel trapped and stagnate, as I felt watching the clinically dull movie, Shame. Instead, this movie is captivating because of the draw of the characters and the inherent drama/irony presented with the romantic triangle. A dental appointment for Mara becomes an uneasy, squirmy situation of great ironic tension, watching Paul shift uncomfortably and trying to mentally figure out what direction to take as his mistress speaks to his wife. Tuesday, After Christmas feels more like a stage play than anything cinematic, unless you're counting the French New Wave (and why shouldn't you?). The scene where Paul mulls over whether to tell his wife is more suspenseful than most Hollywood movies. The devastation that follows is heartbreaking but completely absorbing. This tiny Romanian film is so astutely well observed when it comes to human foibles and interaction that the film almost feels like a documentary. The patient, deliberately elongated takes further crystallize this sensation, making us feel like we are inappropriately eavesdropping on some very serious personal drama. The acting is equally remarkable. For this movie to really work the three actors must step up their game, and all three came to play. First off, Branescue (Outbound) has to do his best to engender empathy because our introduction to the guy is during a romp with his mistress. But in those early moments we see how kind, lively, and peaceful he can be. Maybe this arrangement is good for him, we question. Then we see his interaction with his wife, and they are less lively, as the day-to-day grind of marriage can take its toll, but their interaction is warm, personable, and even through the mundane activity of Christmas shopping, we can piece together their relationship, which doesn't seem troubled but resting in that comfortable position long-term relationships can plateau. Branescue never comes across as a scheming cad to vilify or a romantic victim. Instead his performance makes him spookily identifiable - this could be anyone. This could be you, assuming "you" are male and possibly living in Romania. The everyday nature of the character and his conflict, and Branescue's nuanced performance, makes the guy empathetic even when his world is crashing around him and it's his fault. The women of Tuesday, After Christmas are also unforgettable. Popistasu (Midnight Man), as the mistress, is mesmerizing, a beautiful woman reminiscent of a Romanian Melanie Laurent (Inglourious Basterds), able to communicate so much with her body language. That first scene with her nude in bed establishes her as a charming, intelligent, rationale ingnue, neither calculating nor flighty. She feels like a real woman, and her relationship with Paul seems to bring out her spark, judging from that sparkling opening sequence. Likewise, Oprisor (Youth without Youth), as the wife, is equally compelling a figure, a woman settled into her marriage and her job and being a mother. Her reaction to Paul's admission of infidelity is the movie's dramatic highpoint, and we witness the actress seemingly go through every stage of grief in a manner of minuets, from anger and betrayal to thinking out the next course of action. I know "Romanian relationship drama" probably doesn't sound like a rollicking night out at the movies, but Tuesday, After Christmas is such an expertly crafted film, carefully observed, impressively acted, gloriously naturalistic in dialogue and direction, and even humorous. Yes, for a movie about infidelity and the possible explosion of a marriage, there is plenty of humor to be found naturally. You may feel stirring of romantic happiness with Paul and Raluca, so much so that you too share in Paul's guilt. You'll feel the disquiet during that meeting of mistress and wife. You'll feel the ache when Adriana really lays into Paul, a deserved and withering attack. You'll understand where every person is coming from. But mostly you'll feel like you've watched a really good movie. Tuesday, After Christmas is richly attuned to the subtleties of human joys, conflict, and reactions, and a movie that will linger with the ring of truth. Don't be a stranger to Romanian cinema. Start here and work your way back. The rewards are worth it. Nate's Grade: A
EvaLena I (ru) wrote: A preacher in a sect is find murdered with his hands cut off and his sister is suspect for the murder. She phones a woman that was in the sect years ago and ask her for help her prove her innocent. The woman hasn`t been back for years, she left in a hurry. She was the preachers girlfriend then. She don`t get a warm welcome when she is back to the village because someone don`t want her to look into the case.
Ed Fucking H (it) wrote: A very well done documentary on the most profitable film in American History. From a sociological point of view it was also a very important movie that broke a lot of barriers, and was an important part of the sexual revolution. This film covers the film itself, it's champions, its critics, the obscenity trials, mafia goons, moral crusaders, feminists, the Lina Lovelace story etc. I've never understood why people fucking on screen get's some people so bent out of shape. If you don't want to see it these films are easy enoug to ignore, but certain people in places of power will always want to control what people are allowed to see. I would say that this film is also of interest to fans of exploitation films. A lot of the paranoia surrounding the porn films of the 70's would cross over and affect those films as well, and their arguments were more or less the same: "These films will turn other wise normal people into serial killer, rapist, sexual deviants." While most rational people will say that this is ridiculous, it did seem to be an effective argument as the porn industry was effectively pushed underground. They weren't able to surpress it to the point of extinction, but they were definently able to affect what constitutes a porn film, thus the unimaginative, carbon copy material produced today. Either way, this is a very thought provoking, often humourous and always entertaining and enlightening documentary about a film that has great cultural importance. Worth seeing regardless of your opinions on pornography.
Hardik C (ca) wrote: dis film s awesome............
Wes S (it) wrote: Familiar credits, familiar story, yet the characters are uninspired and slow. It takes a while for the action to pick up, and it never goes far enough. Some decent low-budget make-up, but in the end, it's just another generic vampire flick.
bill s (mx) wrote: Should have been a 30 minute short because that;s all the interest in this film lasts.
Sondre L (es) wrote: Bobby Ray Shafer er kul ass! Daaaimn! Han ER psychocop! Underholdende og morsom syns jeg. Selv om 2'ern er mer ekstrem. Officer Joe Vickers ftw!
Eric R (gb) wrote: Normally I would keep this opening bitch for the bonus rant section but I have to make a special case for this film. The DVD cover art I have has a lone picture of Jean-Claude Van Damme with a tattoo of a black eagle on his chest. From this we can assume that Van Damme is the main star and that his code name is "Black Eagle" due to his tattoo. First of all Jean-Claude Van Damme is NOT the main star and he does NOT have a black eagle tattoo. Oh yes, he is in the movie but he only gets second billing. This is actually a 1988 theatrical film starring none other than ninja legend himself Sho Kosugi though he is not credited on my DVD cover. Sho is the main character with the code name the title is referring to.Despite what some versions of the cover art wants you to believe, this is actually a Sho Kosugi action film with Jean Claude Van Damme only playing the villain's main henchman. By the time this film came out in 1988 Sho Kosugi's popularity was starting to decline in the action film market and Van Damme's was only just beginning, hence why the some DVD companies did this cloak and dagger DVD cover into fooling potential purchasers. This cover art actually worked against me when I first heard of it. If they used the original poster artwork and showed me it was actually a Sho Kosugi film I would have been much more apt to buy it at first as I am not that huge of a fan of Van Damme, especially his direct-to-video garbage which some DVD covers makes it look like.Now that I got it straightened out with you that this is a Kosugi film and NOT a Van Damme film, I'm going to throw another curve ball your way. Kosugi doesn't play his trademark ninja character here that he was known for throughout the 80's. Kosugi not playing a ninja? How can this be? He actually plays a spy/assassin here. The plot is actually very similar to a James Bond film. An American plane crash-lands in the Mediterranean and Kosugi is brought in to track down a top secret laser tracking device. It must not have been too top secret as the Russians quickly move in to capture it first. Typical spy action occurs as Russians kidnap Kosugi's family and it ends up a showdown between Kosugi and Van Damme.The film really plays off like a poor man's James Bond film. It's like James Bond, extra light with no sugar or caffeine. Sure there's even a sequence when our main spy meets our main villain and henchman over a card game while wearing tuxedos but all the action and chase sequences are very bland and by-the-numbers. The plot also isn't that exciting and director Eric Karson takes his sweet time getting the picture to move along. Still my biggest complaint is that Kosugi always seems to get the filmmakers to cast his children in his movies (Kane and Shane). They are horrible actors and it just annoys me when stars force filmmakers to use their family members.Though not unwatchable it is just very forgettable action film and isn't near as fun or over-the-top as Kosugi's early 80's action films for the Cannon Group. The film also doesn't seem to hold up well for Van Damme fans either as he barely says any lines. I actually felt after watching the film that Van Damme would have been better in the spy role and Kosugi in the main henchman role. I always felt Kosugi made a much better villain, especially with those small vengeful eyes. Still it was interesting to see two of the 80's biggest action stars go head-to-head for a short time despite the film being completely forgettable.
Broken Hearts And Sorrow (fr) wrote: A great classic about a cult of chainsaw weilding hookers... Starring one of my favorite scream queens "Linnea Quigley"
Mitch S (it) wrote: One of my favorite movies as a child. I'm sure in reality it is pretty awful but it holds a soft spot in my heart. (A-)
Willy T (fr) wrote: En pocas ocasiones una pelicula teatro/musical toca temas historicos con singular acierto, con actuaciones sobresalientes y con arreglos musicales que permiten al espectador deleitarse en cada momento. Se ve la mano del gran director de teatro Peter Brook que no lo hace mal ante la camara.
Jose L (es) wrote: You had me at fuck you ..... Stallone knows how to deliver those one liners, (Yeah it's bad, but entertaining)
Indu R (au) wrote: I liked this movie. It was inspirational and the plot was very good. Mark Wahlburg was good as Vince Papale. This movie was not as dramatic for an inspirational sports movie.