Elling, a review by Danae Cassandra
Where We Are: Norway
What We Watched:
Year of Release: 2001
Starring: Per Christian Ellefsen, Sven Nordin, Marit Pia Jacobsen, Jørgen Langhelle, Per Christensen
Directed By: Petter Næss
After a two-year stint in a state home in which the shy, neurotic Elling and the loud, sex-obsessed Kjell Bjarne became close friends, the pair are released and forced to enter the real world.They find themselves placed in a state funded apartment where a social worker tells them to behave responsibly and act like normal members of society. Initially, the simple act of going around the corner for groceries is a challenge. In time, as they learn to adjust, the two find oddball ways to cope with society, striking up unlikely friendships in the strangest places. Now they're packed and ready for the greatest adventure of their lives. All they have to do is get out of the house!
This was a wonderful, funny, touching, ultimately heartwarming film. It's a film about relationships - the relationships of people with each other, and the relationships of people with society. It's a film about getting out of your comfort zone and grabbing life. And the difficulty in doing so.
Elling, our protagonist, begins with great difficulties in grabbing life. While it is never mentioned, he obviously has a severe anxiety disorder and is extremely shy, having been sheltered his entire life. It's a stretch for him to try walking down the block to buy groceries. Yet, as he gets outside his comfort zone and tries to do things, he accomplishes things. If we look deeper into ourselves, we might see a bit of Elling inside each of us - we each have our own comfort zones and our own problems breaking out of our familiar, safe havens and routines. In Elling's (and his roomie, Kjell Bjarne's) triumphs we could see our own.
Top-notch acting on the part of the two leads. Absolutely some of the best I've seen in a long time. They really embody these characters. The camera work seems, at first, nothing special, but I really liked the way it seemed to tilt, or swim, just a little, when Frank (the social worker) pushed Elling and Kjell Bjarne to do something uncomfortable.
Another thing I really liked was that the film treated these two men with a lot of humanity and dignity. Both had a lot to offer, if they are given, and give themselves, a chance to find it. Very funny and uplifting film - highly recommended.
Bechdel Test: Fail
(From Around the World in 86 Movies on August 11th, 2013)
Misery, a review by addicted2dvd
A "heart-stopping psychological thriller" (Joel Siegel), this Academy Award-winning film is "one of the best horror movies" ('Time') ever. Adapted from a Stephen King novel by Oscar®-winning screenwriter William Goldman ('All The President's Men') and directed by Rob Reiner ('A Few Good Men'), this chiller starring Kathy Bates ('Titanic') and James Cann ('The Godfather') is "a Hitchcockian kind of cat-and-mouse" ('The New York Times') game played between two cunning minds - one as sharp as a tack and the other as blunt as a sledgehammer.
Novelist Paul Sheldon (Cann) doesn't remember the blinding blizzard that sent his car spinning off the road. Nor does he remember being nursed back from unconsciousness. All he remembers is waking up in the home of Annie Wilkes (Bates) - a maniacal fan who is bent on keeping her favorite writer as her personal prisoner…for the rest of his 'cock-a-doodie' life!
This is one I only seen a few times before. It is a really good story... and I think Kathy Bates did a wonderful job in it. Unfortunately there isn't much for extras on this release... basically just the Theatrical Trailer and Teaser. I hear that there is a collector's Edition coming soon... so I am seriously considering an upgrade when it is released,
(From Stephen King Marathon... on July 12th, 2007)
Tru Calling Marathon, a review by addicted2dvd
Tru Calling Marathon
Image: Tru at the hospital for her brother.
Episode 1 - Pilot
When her medical school internship falls through, Tru Davies takes a job at the city morgue where she has an extraordinary encounter with a dead woman.
Kristoffer Polaha as Mark Evans
Hudson Leick as Rebecca Morgan
Heath Freeman as Cameron
John Haymes Newton as Aaron McCann
Vincent Laresca as Marco
Callum Keith Rennie as Elliot Winters
A difference I forgot to mention was that they down-graded Cameron's part to just a friend she graduated with and had drinks afterward with. There is no mention of the game he is creating... and she does not call him for help. They change that to Davis as we are used to in the series. This is a good start to the series. I enjoyed it. Tru definitely have a good memory. There is no way I would have remembered some of the things she did from the rewind day. Like the numbers that came up in that lotto thing. With my luck I wouldn't of even remembered which card my brother needed to save him from the beating. I also liked how they made you think the main storyline was over... just to through you back into it moments later.
Bonus Features for this Episode:
- Commentary Track with Creator/Executive Producer Jon Harmon Feldman , Executive Producer Dawn Parouse, Actors Eliza Dushku & Shaun Reaves
- Deleted Scenes with Optional Commentaty
(From Tru Calling Marathon on April 27th, 2010)