L’ Uragano (IT, 1911)

When I get bored, I turn to the Desmet collection, and it never fails to give me something interesting.

L’Uragano is an early drama by Pasquali film, an important and influential early studio.

Gretha/Renata has to get a job after her parents die, but gets mixed up with human traffickers who force her to work in an upscale brothel, the “Salon”.

Rudolf/Andrea is a fuckboy who has been seeing Agatha/Clotilde, whom he does not love (why see her, then, Rudolf?). He sees Gretha and falls in love with her but loses track of her on the street; he ghosts Agatha to try to find her. Agatha finds out he’s ghosted her and vows revenge.

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A Death in the Gunj (India, 2016)

I really only watched A Death In The Gunj for Jim Sarbh and Kalki, but I ended up liking it more than I thought I would.

This is one of those “tense house party where everyone has secrets and someone is having a nervous breakdown” movies, which I like when they are proper melodramas. This isn’t a melodrama, it’s arthouse, which I generally don’t like. But sometimes arthouse movies are alright.

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The Black Prince (India/USA/UK, 2017)

The Black Prince was not shown in theatres where I live, and I’ve desperately wanted to see it ever since, because the cast was as if someone had been playing madlibs with my favourite actors.  Shabana Azmi (!!!), David Essex (!!!!!!), Amanda Root (!!!), Keith from Boyzone (????!!!). Coincidentally, I had recently seen David Essex perform live when I watched it, another plus.

Now that I’ve seen this, I don’t know if you can call it a “movie”  so much as “a confused one page essay by a first year student about Duleep Singh’s life as a metaphor for the modern struggle for an independent Sikh state, acted out by human-shaped forms”. If a combo of Shabana Azmi and David Essex cannot save your movie, then my friend, you have a problem.

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Ek Ladki Ko Dekha Toh Aisa Laga (India, 2019)

Ek Ladki Ko Dekha Toh Aisa Laga is almost my ideal mainstream movie. Accessible, positive, and with enough of a progressive or critical slant that it isn’t asinine. It’s also a good movie, because it knows exactly what it wants to be and achieves it exactly.

This was not released in theatres where I live, which surprised me, because this seems like a prime region for progressive family movies, but all we get is awful Indian government approved patriotic nonsense. I guess the desi audience here is more conservative than I bargained for. But it is on Netflix, which is a miracle, because our Netflix never has anything.

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Anil Kapoor/Govinda double bill 2: Deewana Mastana (India, 1997)

Deewana Mastana often appears on lists of best Govinda films. While I think that’s kind of overrating this movie (let’s face it, it’s not Hatya), it’s entertaining enough and on the Govinda film rating scale falls under “Govinda is the best thing about the movie”. I know it’s borrowed some elements from What about Bob? but I haven’t seen that so will not comment on it.

Anil Kapoor is a small time crook who falls in love with Juhi Chawla, a psychiatrist. He pretends to be an honest dude to try to win her affections.

Also falling in love with Juhi is her patient Govinda, a rich manchild with a variety of crippling mental illnesses that are meant to be funny (and sometimes are).

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Switch (USA, 1991)

Switch is a 1991 comedy about a terrible man, Steve Brooks (Perry King), who gets killed by three of his ex-girlfriends for being such a shit, and then is reincarnated by God so he can make a case for himself to get into heaven. He has to do this by returning to earth as a woman, and finding one (1) woman who likes him.

switch

Reincarnated Steve decides to introduce himself as Steve’s half-sister Amanda Brooks (Ellen Barkin), who manspreads in adorable early 90s high fashion outfits, tries to figure out her sexuality (difficult as Steve likes women but hates gays), and gets into many fights.

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Anil Kapoor/Govinda double bill 1: Awaargi (India, 1990)

Awaargi is an excellent movie, restrained and realistic in tone and substance, but with enough masala insanity to make it fun.

Meenakshi is saved from a career in forced prostitution by a tender-hearted goon, Anil Kapoor. She then meets popular singer and dancer Govinda, and they form a performing duo together to much success.

Both Anil and Govinda fall in love with her, and this makes Anil want to settle down and give up his goon job, which his don does not approve of. Who will Meenakshi choose?

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Possessed (USA, 1947)

Happy new year! Enjoy this review of a super depressing film.

Attention women (especially OLD ones, ew)! If you bother a man with your disgusting, hysterical emotions, you will:

1. make the man you love leave you (for a younger, hotter, less demanding woman of course)
2. alienate your husband and stepdaughter
3. make the man you love hit you
4. kill at least one person
5. go insane

possessed1

Possessed is the story of a vulnerable middle aged woman, Louise (Joan Crawford), who falls in love with a condescending bastard, David (Van Heflin)- who by his own admission “seldom hits a woman”- and drives him away with her unreasonable request for commitment.

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