Tuesday, 17 April 2007

The Lives of Others

What an absolutely fantastic film! It’s the first film I have seen since I put together my top ten films of 2006 which should have been in that list. In fact, I think it would have come in at number two! I have mentioned elsewhere on the blog how rare it is for me to give four stars to any film. This film gets four stars without any hesitation. The reason? It is as close to perfect as films get these days.

The acting is impeccable throughout (by everyone concerned), the cinematography is amazing, the settings always provide exactly the right feel (East Germany in 1984), the screenplay is extremely intelligent and tight, the editing is flawless; it’s like watching a work of art that falls into the masterpiece category. And much of the film is about the role of art, and people, in challenging or collaborating with the unjust and oppressive systems in our societies.

Given the incredible critical praise for Pan’s Labyrinth, I was wondering how this film could have won the day at the Academy Awards. Now I know; The Lives of Others leaves Pan’s Labyrinth in the dust. It is one of the very best films ever to come out of Germany.

More I need not say here. Go out and watch this film as soon as you can and we can talk about the endless array of fascinating characters in this film and how they tried to survive in a totalitarian world. Unfortunately, there is much here that transfers too easily to our own supposedly democratic societies in 2007.

A mug of Colombia’s very finest straight up! ****

1 comment:

  1. Definitely a great movie - and especially great that I could see it with you in Winnipeg. An official Two Mugs Up for this one. (Vic, we need some nice logo or something to label such blessed movies.)

    Any readers out there: Apologies for the lack of entries lately - our dad died in late April and we were both in Winnipeg for a couple of weeks. We're now busy catching up on life's details. More to come soon.