Memoirs of a Geisha; Munich; Brokeback Mountain; New World; MatchPoint

The half ass “catch up” reviews…


Memoirs of a Geisha, one of the few books out there I’ve actually read, was originally set to be directed by Steven Spielberg and instead fell in the hands of Rob Marshall of “Chicago” fame. The book as it reads is very cinematic. It seemed like it would take a fool to screw up its adaptation. The fool, Rob Marshall. This is a fine film and entertaining, but pretty flat and no where near the journey it deserved to be.


Munich is the film Spielberg gave up on Geisha to direct. This film was the best of all the nominated films for best picture last year. The others: Good Night and Good Luck, Brokeback Mountain, Capote and the winner an oddly enough the hardest for me to remember, Crash. The story everyone was familiar with was the kidnapping and botched rescue of the Israeli Athletes. The story of this film focuses on the vengeance sought out by Israel on those responsible. The film is a beautiful tale of evil begetting evil and in the end violence should be learned as inappropriate measure.


Brokeback Mountain, the most talked about picture of the year has given us yet another adjective for the word “gay.” When you feel the need to express that something you observe is “gay” now may say “Brokeback” and not feel as much like a bigot. The film is based on a short story and this explains why the story felt a little stretched to me. The performances were extraordinary and this was a wonderfully tragic story, but I fell victim to the advertising on this one. A great love story is what it was called and I don’t deny that they may have been in love, but the fact that they were in love was not the focus of the story. The focus was on the backlash of admitting who they were to themselves and the rest of the world and for that it was a great movie, however not a great love story.


New World is the story of John Smith and Pocahontas as told by the point of view of Pocahontas, which might explain the very earthy feel and pacing to this movie. To many this has proved boring, but for me the level of authenticity given to both parties in the story made for a completely engaging and well told epic which took Pocahontas from her land to the “new world” oversees.


Match Point is Woody Allen’s best effort in over a decade. From the setting, to the intensity this is by far the furthest thing from a Woody Allen movie I’ve seen in a Woody Allen movie. The story follows the very kind and respectful, Chris, who meets a wealthy young man, who introduces him to his sister. From there a relationship of convenience begins and a lustful obsession with another woman will take Chris to his very end, where he is reminded of these great words… “it is better to be lucky than good.”

~ by fumikaelson on July 25, 2006.

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