Archive for tag 'Not Hollywood'

  • Woman at War

    This is a very funny comedy, attuned to the Thunbergian times we live in (despite being done before that). Quirky, but full of heart.

  • By the Grace of God

    Simple but powerful treatise into Church sexual abuses in Lyon. Sometimes, just reading the allegations suffices.

  • Adults in the Room

    A seemingly faithful diorama of the 5 months in which Varoufakis lead the Greek finance ministry, until being ostracised by the European institutions that turned Tsipras into his own anathema. ευχαριστώ.

  • Tropa de Elite

    Bait and switch. Starts off as a nihilist critique of Brazilian society before going off the rails into full blow fascism. Remarkable in every other way though, a true Triumph of the Will.

  • Good Bye Lenin

    A satirical look at the transition from late-stage decadent DDR into unified Germany, by way of complete exhaustion. Should always be accompanied by Das Leben der Anderen for a more complete picture.

  • Hammer of the Gods

    A surprisingly deep medieval Bildungsroman, comprising a lot of gruesome deaths but also mental thrashings: disappointment, grief, betrayal. Moving from defeat to defeat, until the final “victory”.

  • Até Que o Porno nos Separe

    A crazy premise leads to a massive tear jerker. Nuts! No cockups here, I was unable to maintain a stiff upper lip.

  • A Herdade

    The fictional biography of Ricardo Salgado, by way of Os Maias. Direct political answer to Raiva. Visually, it’s almost 3 hours of people chain smoking and gobbling litters of whisky.

  • Das Boot

    Alaaaarm! One of the greatest epic films, stands besides Seven Samurai and Saving Private Ryan as a eerie depiction of war.

  • Rumble in the Bronx

    A batshit insane old-school Jackie Chan film, but with a larger budget. The freaking hovercraft…

  • Diamantino

    Shaolin Soccer meets Bourne, featuring Mediterranean refugees. Never thought that last sentence could ever make sense.

  • Paprika

    Dreams are more addicting than any drugs. They can make a fat child-like slob believe he has a chance with Dr. Chiba, a hyper competent professional woman. And in the end, mind over matter. Suck it, police detective!

  • Tokyo Godfathers

    An adult version of Ice Age. Three hobos who make for a strange family find an abandoned baby in the trash and go on a self-imposed quest to deliver them into her family. They eventually deliver themselves into their old estranged families…

  • Immortel, ad vitam

    Better than I remembered. A classic noir tale of Egyptian gods meddling with human (and mutant, and alien) affairs, with the protagonists being jerked around, railing against the gods for free will.

  • Millennium Actress

    An actress tells her life story to a fanboy interviewer (and his cameraman), and the recollections are so life-like they are transported into diorama-like versions of it. In a stroke of genius, her story and her films are one and the same, and their plots span a millennium (hence the title).

  • Call Girl

    The bog standard story of a high-class prostitute who hoodwinks her clients and the cop to run away with a suitcase full of cash to Brazil. Her real name is Mary, surname had to be Sue.

  • Perfect Blue

    The distillation of all fame-related works mixed with a psycho-thriller, and there’s even time for a story within a story.

  • Eclipse em Portugal

    A failed attempt to make a sort of remake of Braindead, without the budget or the script. It has heart, but no guts.

  • Balas & Bolinhos

    A crappy no-budget The Hangover years before that. Just like that popular “film” devoid of content, it spawned a franchise. Yet another proof that there is no God.

  • Capharnaüm

    Really puts a human face into the so called “economic migrants” we hear so much about. If this can’t shift policy, nothing can.

  • The Salvation

    Oily western that doesn’t let its amateurish CGI brighten its dark soul. Nearly everybody dies, and the living are left broken beyond words.

  • Os Maias: Cenas da Vida Romântica

    A faithful adaptation of the seminal XIX century story, but poor in production values and plot. The important plot beats are presented in a matter-of-fact way, for such emotionally powerful moments.

  • Raiva

    Cinema veritè, in 1930’s Alentejo. Structured like a revenge plot, mostly against metaphoric leeches represented by literal landowners.

  • Sightseers

    The accidental Bonnie and Clyde, except complete cretins. Reaches Nathan Barley levels of idiocy.

  • Suspiria

    Flash Gordon meets Braindead, but not as developed as any of those.

  • Utøya 22. juli

    In this “fake” single-shot film, the fascist is never seen up close, only the victims matter. Fuck fascists, you will not replace us.

  • Jorge

    Standard “drugs are bad” flick. Despite being about heroin addiction, everybody is happy, and after a brief “Kum ba yah” all is good.

  • Videovigilância

    An ultra depressing film about lowlife Blockbuster Clerks / drug dealers that bite more than they can chew and get their lives kicked down a notch.

  • Malapata

    A demo reel for Hot Jesus. A box ticking enterprise. Not even worth it to finish the

  • Lo chiamavano Jeeg Robot

    The good remake of The Toxic Avenger, with added anime referenced for good measure.

  • Linhas de Sangue

    Ensemble parody of action films in general. Low budget doesn’t mean low quality, but in this case that is not completely off the mark.

  • Autómata

    RealDolls are people too (Incredibly NSFW, you have been warned!).

  • Balada da Praia dos Cães

    Simple investigation into a murder that might have political connotations. Turns out it was a crime of passion and the political police are clutching at straws trying to extract meaning where it doesn’t exist.

  • Leviano

    Hipster bullcrap. A low rent Spring Breakers.

  • Paprika

    Even man-child Fritz Haber deserves love.

  • El cadáver de Anna Fritz

    Some films show all their ideas on the title. This one does it on the synopsis.

  • Jagten

    A great film for our times. Paranoia leads to witch hunts which lead to wrecked communities. A great companion piece to Doubt.

  • Animal Político

    Dadaist CGI cow roams an urban setting, like the subway, restaurants, offices. Cow-a-bunda!

  • Síndrome de Estocolmo

    A scathing satire of Portuguese society. The script writer was a classy troll, and the fact that this was greenlit by the biggest broadcast network only makes it even funnier.

  • Castle in the Sky

    The anime with an unpronounceable name in most Romance languages. That joke is inherited from Gulliver’s Travels.

  • Monsanto

    PTSD-ridden ex-soldier goes insane after a partner kills himself.

  • A Very Long Engagement

    Engaging for a very long time. War never changes.

  • Peregrinação

    A road movie set in the Age of Discoveries. The main character travels through Asia in search of wealth and prestige and ends up shunned by the royalty.

  • A Noiva

    Made for TV simplistic take on the colonial war.

  • Pinocchio

    That’s Pinocchio, all right.

  • Howl's Moving Castle

    Steampunk Wizard of Oz, set during the Great War.

  • O Pai Tirano

    One of the representatives of golden age of Portuguese cinema, it’s still hilarious. There’s an overarching plot of silliness and hilarious smaller bits which betrays its origin as vaudeville-esque popular theatre (known as revista).

  • Cube

    High concept horror film without a budget. Focuses on the dynamics between characters. Blows Saw off the water.

  • Bangkok Dangerous

    Light drama meets tourism postcard with murders.

  • Coming Home

    Yimou Zhang goes minimal and makes a film with only three characters, a nuclear family.

  • La vie d'Adèle

    Came for the lesbian sex, stayed for the Bildungsroman.

  • Mad Max 2

    After 3 or 4 views, you can see the speed up scenes, but it’s still very suspenseful to see the last chase scene (and the rest of the film too).

  • Un moment d'égarement

    Puts the ‘fun’ in ‘paedophilia’

  • Perdidos

    This is a remake of Open Water 2: Adrift. It’s better than it sounds, but I haven’t seen the original.

  • Tarde Demais

    This is a story about a group of fisherman from the outskirts of Lisbon that sink their boat in the mud in viewing distance from the shore, but since some are weak, old and/or injured, can’t get to safety before tragedy happens.

  • São Jorge

    Boxing is life, and so is debt collection.

  • Braindead

    Yesterday was Halloween, so I watched Braindead. Peter Jackson’s love letter to his favourite films: King Kong, Raiders of the Lost Ark and schlocky gory stuff.

  • Police Story 3: Super Cop

    This is just amazing. Should really be called Secret Service Story.

  • Royal Space Force: The Wings of Honnêamise

    Weirdly great.