Midday Movies: Films To Be Thankful For
Critics pick current releases as well as older titles to be grateful for
Friday, November 15, 2019
Thanksgiving is around the corner, so Midday Movies asks what films can we be thankful for?
As the Oscar hopefuls start to roll into theaters for the holidays, Moviewallas' film critic Yazdi Pithavala and I look to a pair of current releases to be grateful for.
Pithavala picked Bong Joon Ho's "Parasite" as one of the recent releases that he is grateful for while I highlighted Robert Eggers' "The Lighthouse." Both films reveal master cinematic craftsmen at the helm.
Since picking films to be thankful for is a challenging task when asked to narrow the selection to just three films, I decided to look to films that my father shared with me. My dad, Allan Accomando, is the one who gave me my passion for film and since he died in August, I thought this would be a good tribute to him. I plan to extend this tribute on next week's Cinema Junkie podcast.
Three films that I am thankful for and thankful that my dad passed on his love of these films to me are a trio from the 1930s, the decade he was born in.
"King Kong" (1933) is one of my all-time favorite films and is my idea of a love story. I always tend to sympathize or at least empathize with the monster/creature and this tragic tale never fails to make me tear up. Then from 1934 is "Duck Soup" with the Marx Brothers. With this film, my father introduced me to the idea of comic anarchy and political satire before I even understood what those were.
And my final film to give thanks for is "The Adventures of Robin Hood" (1938) starring Errol Flynn and Olivia DeHavilland. This eye-popping Technicolor swashbuckler will make you swoon with all its swordplay, romance and merry fun.
Pithavala looked to a trio of more recent, more serious, and decidedly not Hollywood films. His means of narrowing his choices was to look for films that encouraged empathy.
From Japan, he chose "Still Walking" (2008) from master filmmaker Hirokazu Kore-eda. This quiet, elegant drama looks to an unexceptional family spending a weekend together. Then he chose a European co-production by the Dardenne Brothers called "Two Days, One Night," about a woman (Marion Cotillard) who has one weekend to convince her co-workers to let her have her job back. And finally, he cited a recent renaissance in Indian cinema for his decision to choose a 2013 Bollywood film "Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani" ("This Youth, It's Crazy"). In addition to musical numbers that top anything done anywhere else in the world, Pithavala said that these highly entertaining films also have something to say about how who we are.
"Parasite" is still playing at Landmark Hillcrest Cinemas and "The Lighthouse" is still playing at AMC Fashion Valley and Regal Parkway Cinemas.
Satisfy your celluloid addiction with the Cinema Junkie podcast, where you can mainline film 24/7. This film and entertainment series is run by KPBS Film Critic Beth Accomando.
So if you need a film fix, want to hear what filmmakers have to say about their work, or just want to know what's worth seeing this weekend, then you've come to the right place
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