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WORLD MOVIES HIGHLIGHTS – MAY 2006

World Movies, as the name implies, delivers movies from around the world to your lounge room; this subscription tv service screens movies 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, ranging from commercial hits to sublime arthouse films, from comedies to thrillers and horror movies. This May, the channel showcases internationally acclaimed filmmakers Pedro Almodovar and Jim Jarmsuch.

May 7, 8.30pm
Agata And The Storm (2004) Italy

Directed by: Silvio Soldini
Starring: Licia Maglietta, Giuseppe Battiston
Silvio Soldini’s Agata And The Storm, is a sweet film and lots of fun. Showered with nominations at Italy’s David Di Donatello Awards, Agata and The Storm opened the Italian Film Festival in Australia in October 2004 and its buoyant mood gave the event momentum. The luminous Licia Maglietta, creates a wonderful Agata, a resplendent, forty something proprietor of a Genoa bookshop who has one of her customers, Nico (Claudio Santamaria), a much younger married man, in a romantic tailspin.

May 14, 8.30pm
Wallander: Before The Frost (2004) Sweden

Directed by: Kjell-Åke Andersson
Starring: Krister Henriksson, Johanna Sällström
Based on a novel by bestselling Swedish author Henning Mankell, Wallander: Before The Frost is an engaging police thriller about a father-and-daughter cop team investigating a series of murders in a small town. This is the first in a series of thirteen films based on Henning Mankell’s Wallander books, and so far six have been made, three of them directed by Kjell-Åke Andersson. Wallander is played by the award winning Krister Henriksson who engages us with his veracity and takes us on this chilling case, to the powerful ending.

May 21, 8.30pm
I’m Not Scared (2003) Italy

Directed by: Gabriele Salvatores
Starring: Giuseppe Cristiano, Aitana Sánchez-Gijón
I’m Not Scared is set in the Italy of the late 70s, when kidnappings were criminally fashionable. But this isn’t just a kidnapping drama; director Gabriele Salvatores tackles the more complex aspect of the phenomenon by studying childhood through the eyes of two 10 year olds caught up in the racket, on different sides. Set amidst the rolling wheat fields of the South, the film is visually sumptuous, sports sensitive performances and was nominated for the Golden Bear at Berlin.

May 28, 8.30pm
Bad Education (2004) Spain

Directed by: Pedro Almodóvar
Starring: Gael García Bernal, Fele Martínez
In Pedro Almodóvar’s Bad Education two young men are reunited by their dark past in this complex and engaging film, replete with twists and turns. Stylish and slick, Bad Education opened the Cannes Film Festival in 2004. Adroitly written and made with great, powerful strokes, Bad Education is a surprise in its restraint around the very subject that forms the heart of the story, namely the experience of young boys at a Catholic school, where the conflicted Father Manolo yearns painfully with illicit love for his charges. Almodóvar. Spain’s cinematic enfant terrible has matured well, and this complex work shows how.

JIM JARMUSCH DOUBLE BILL
May 11, 8:30pm

Stranger Than Paradise (1983) USA
Directed: Jim Jarmusch
Starring: John Lurie, Eszter Balint
Stranger Than Paradise follows three characters who travel to “paradise” in the hope it will add some meaning to their lives. A stark, sparse film that carries within it the seeds of much of Jarmusch’s cinematic searching. Beautifully shot by Tom DiCillio in noirish black and white; images almost echoing with the emptiness of the landscape that Jarmusch presents as a kind of abandoned America, where life has retreated into tiny, interior spaces.

May 24, 8:30pm
Night On Earth (1991) USA

Directed: Jim Jarmusch
Starring: Winona Ryder, Roberto Benigni, Gena Rowlands, Béatrice Dalle
Night on Earth tells the stories of five simultaneous taxi journeys one night across the world, from sunset in Los Angeles to dawn in Helsinki. Jarmusch shows his observational prowess and his strong sense of cinema as he takes us on five rides across the face of human nature. What’s more he has assembled a terrific international cast including people like Armin Mueller Stahl, Giancarlo Esposito, Rosie Perez, Béatrice Dalle, Roberto Benigni as well as Gina Rowlands and Wynona Ryder - and added some rusty vocals by Tom Waits.

Published April 27, 2006
 

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