marlasingers

IMDb member since October 2002
    Lifetime Total
    5+
    IMDb Member
    18 years

Reviews

Saturday Night Fever
(1977)

Loneliness & elation rolled into a film reflecting its era.
It's funny how people remember a film they are reminiscing about. An example would be "Muriel's Wedding" - a film that is labeled as a comedy. And yet it is one of the saddest & most realistic films about family life that has been made. When you remember the film, its moments of humour are so clever, that they hide the dark undercurrents explored.

The same goes for "Saturday Night Fever" (SNF), a film that showcases disco in its most perfect form. And yet the true theme of the movie is about wanting more out of your life but just existing, until something affects you so much that you decide to start living.

John Travolta's character is so well played against his friends who are, quite simply, cruel no hopers who disrespect the opposite sex & treat them as fifth best against the car they all share to have 'mobile' sex in.

The female character that eventually shifts Travolta's character appears at a time when horrific events really force him to reassess where he is going – something that his friends will never be unable to ever do.

It is easy to label a movie a certain way. There are films with similar themes such as 'Good Will Hunting', which is noted for its themes & dialogue rather than being a kitsch memory, and we should remember SNF for the same reasons.

Pugwall
(1989)

Serious acting, serious lyrics.
I think there was this hidden love of "Pugwall" when I was at school. We would make fun of it but watch it all the same.

I would say, however, that it wasn't that "cool". Take, for example, the lyrics to the music Puigwall's 'band' put together:

"Morning to midnight (castanet syncopation) I'm thinking o- hov you Tossing & turning What can I do?"

or;

"We're all gonna have a party (guitar riff) Food and drink for everyone one (guitar riff) Laughing, jumping(?) dancing, singing (guitar riff) Every body is welcome"

or the theme song;

"Nobody tells me what to do No not me Nobody tells me what to say Can't you see"

It was great - all the songs were complete with correct, clipped pronunciation; not exactly rock & roll.

Then there was the theme music that came on whenever Pugwall's arch-enemies came hooning past on their BMX's;

"Bad boys, bad boys Bad bad boys"

Sheer late-eighties hard-core kids' TV.

But at the same time, to quote "Seinfeld" - It's grotesque. Yet I can't look away."

Quincy M.E.
(1976)

Quincy is the man.
I watched "Quincy" when it was on the first time round with my mum, dad & sister. I didn't quite get it the first time around as I was a young lady in those days. However I was fortunate to see it on digital TV in England, and have realized the true, raw, emotion that is Quincy, coroner & all-round good guy.

Quincy is insightful. Before all these "CSI" & "Cold Case" programmes, there was Quincy. Was he one step ahead? Let's just say he was on the ball. He knew the truth behind the lies, the evil from the good and the down-right guilty from the innocent. When he had a hunch, you'd better believe he was right. Had a crime to solve? Quincy was your guy.

Quincy get what he wants. If there was someone who was holding something back, Quincy had enough on them to solve the case & get the job done.

Quincy was a man's man. With soul. He lived & loved like a man who's time was almost up, and it showed. He solved the case when no one else thought it could be done. He felt for the deceased & gave them a voice when everyone else thought it had fallen silent.

Quincy has charisma. There was no other man on television who had a hand that was as good with a woman as it was with a dead body.

Quincy cares. Sure, Quincy was a man's man; he would be at the bar buying a round for the guys, but he hurts like the rest of us. He just kept it all inside.

So there you have it - the man & the myth that is Quincy. There will never be another... all those copy-cats? Well the men want to be him, & the women want to be WITH him. Quincy, you're the best.

Fight Club
(1999)

Pulls punches & not just with the fist.
The first time watching "Fight Club", you may be confronted not necessarily by the violence, but by the freshness of language, imagery & sounds that smack your senses & reach your inner most thoughts.

Having now seen it many times, I see it from a new perspective each time & this is thanks, in part, to both Edward Norton & Helena Bonham-Carter. This film reflects the career path they have both chosen to take; far from run of the mill & definitely brilliant.

David Fincher is a director who has the ability to create visually stunning films and at the same time play on raw, human emotions. In a world where violence inflicted on others is promoted in the media as a way to increase audience ratings figures, "Fight Club" is a refreshing change. Perhaps if we start feeling again & realize our own failings & accept ourselves as we are instead of trying to be Mr or Miss Perfect, then maybe we'll be more accepting of others as well.

A Map of the World
(1999)

Suffers from a lack of direction
This film was such an amazing concept; a fantastic lead role for a female actress. I have no qualms with Weaver or Moore in this film but I do with the director.

This film had a lot of potential to explore what happens when a person undergoes life-altering experiences in a short period of time, whether it is due to a situation that is within or out of their control. Throughout the film, the character was on the edge of greatness, and yet it never quite happened. There were at least 4 moments in the film that were headed this way but the viewer simply ends up feeling like it was all an anti-climax.

It is a shame, but perhaps a similar film will be made in the near future where the themes explored in this film actually reward both the viewer & do the characters justice.

Angel Baby
(1995)

Love is a unique thing to us all.
When I first saw this film, I felt torn apart by the complexity of love. In particular, the love that exists between the lead characters. It is hard enough in the "real world" for people to have a love without the interference of others.

In this film, the love story is exceptional. The two people have schizophrenia, an illness not of split personality, but of hallucinations that don't exist & voices that are heard but have no face.

So, under all this still lies the human need for love. And these two people find it. Pure & simplified. Until things start to go wrong again.

The challenges that faced the lead actors was to make believable both their love story & their illness. In particular, Jacqueline McKenzie is an amazing & articulate actor & remains true to her character's situation & beliefs throughout the film.

I decided to make a point of mentioning the film for it's true portrayal of a greatly misunderstood & yet common illness. For all the films about cancer, alcoholism & other illnesses, mental illnesses are still generally misunderstood & ignorantly ill-portrayed. Previous to "A Beautiful Mind", this is one of the films that portrays this illness both realistically beautifully, and for those reasons alone it can help people to understand more about an illness that most probably affects someone you know.

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