1945 (2017, Hungarian)
This is a film about a Jewish father and son who return to their Hungarian village post-Holocaust while the village is preparing for a wedding. This makes the villagers paranoid and guilty of whether the family will wish to claim land or take revenge. Albeit an “Elephant-In-The-Room” type story, this film is a beautiful black and white display of the lifestyle of Eastern Europe communities and their new problems post-World War Two.
Parasite (2019, Korean)
By director Bong Joon-Ho, this film is a thriller/drama that displays side-by-side the inner workings of two families, the poor infiltrating their labour and house of the rich without the rich family’s knowledge. This film takes many dark turns and will surely leave you in awe once finished. In the theater, I was often in awe of the amazing film techniques Bong Joon-Ho incorporated in this situation.
Hugo (2011, English)
Directed by Martin Scorsese, this film was made specifically for his daughter, but ended up complimenting my taste just as well. I put this film down because it has a certain aesthetic to it and production design that has not left my mind, and one I am sure won’t. It has the feel to Paris that you wish for, and it is presented with a very touching story for anyone of any age.
The Master (2012, English)
This film is by director Paul Thomas Anderson and follows Freddie Quell, who has just come out of the army as a broke drunkard and soon depends upon Lancaster Dodd and his wife Peggy as parental figures. Consequently, Lancaster depends upon Freddy to use him as an experimental spokesperson to represent his newly-born religion, a mocking of scientology. The film has amazing acting, beautiful cinematography and overall very memorable characters.
Certified Copy (2010, French/English)
This film is by Iranian director Abbas Kiastromi and tells the tale of two people, author James and store owner Elle, who have decided to spend the day together in the city of Tuscany, Italy. Throughout the day, the two begin to know more and more about each other, as though they have known each other for some time now.
The dialogue in this film is absolutely amazing and the acting is a talent upon the screen you wish you didn’t have to see eventually end. A clever, witty film that all Romance-fans will enjoy.
Hard to Be a God (2013, Russian)
This film is absolutely outstanding in direction and production design. With a length of over three hours, you will be wanting much more from this film, as you will not be bored for a second of it. The concept itself is a very interesting string of events, as scientists have found a planet that parallels Earth except for that it seems to be stuck in the Renaissance, for the emperor’s assistant, Don Reba, is in charge of the execution of all “intellectuals” that may progress their culture. It is an interesting question that arises due to this film. It is funny, dark, dramatic and at times very profound.
The Lighthouse (2019, English)
From director Robert Eggars, this film stars only two actors, Robert Pattinson and Willem Dafoe, who both give excellent performances. As a black and white psychological thriller, Eggars does everything in his directing capability to make sure that you don’t know whether you have been stuck with Willem Dafoe on this island, for, as Dafoe puts it, “How long have we been on this rock? Five weeks? Two days? Help me to recollect.” This film is absolutely phenomenal with all of its acting and old-English dialogue.
The Tree of Life (2011, English)
The most famous and renowned film by director Terrence Malick, this film is one of the most spiritually insightful and cinematically mesmerizing films to date, and will surely leave you in awe during some scenes. This film polishes over every aspect of life, that being childhood, adulthood, the joys, the crises. It presents a modern world, an ancient world, a prehistoric world. It showcases everything and does it in such a way that you will by the end begin to appreciate life more than you would after any other film.
Burning (2018, Korean)
This film is one of the most memorable in terms of style, for color scheme in this film is absolutely outstanding. I was able to feel the environment the characters were in in every scene, and I must give it up all to the cinematography of the film. It is a mysterious tale of love and deceit in a group of characters who seem, on the outside, all very commonplace people. It is a story of unknown temptations, and I was excited, eager and mesmerized throughout the entirety of the film.
The Turin Horse (2011, Hungarian)
At the top of the list is Belá Tarr’s philosophical drama “The Turin Horse”, quite possibly the most underrated film to ever face the modern world. Based upon the horse that Nietzsche once went mad over in the wake of its abuse, this film follows that very event, documented the horses owner and lifestyle. It is a depressing, meaningful, and awe-inspiring.