Animal Farm (1954)

STORY – 1
DIRECTOR – 1
MUSIC – 0
CULT – 1

VERDICT – 3/4

 
PROS –
1) The story of a revolution. The story of civilization. The story of the Soviet Union.
2) An animated movie is primarily targetting younger audiences and Halas and Batchelor justified this timeless novel with a stupendous adaptation.

 
CONS –
1) The novel is Orwellian and the ending is supposed to be bleak. The upbeat climax is against the spirit of the novel.

 
QUOTE –
“All animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others”.

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Zorba the Greek (1964)

STORY – 1
DIRECTOR – 1
ACTOR – 1
MUSIC – 1
CULT – 1

 

VERDICT – 5/5

 
PROS –
1) An half-English writer’s disastrous business venture in a poverty-stricken Greek village with a mystical man called Zorba.
2) Lila Kedrova as Madame Hortense. The poignant subplot of this courtesan was extremely touching. Once a damsel and now spending her final years recounting her glory days of a bygone era.
3) The plight of a young widow in a narrow-minded village. The character played by Irene Papas shares a great resemblance to that of Malena (2000)
4) Zorba – the easy-going man full of life. The juxtaposition of stoic & epicurean at the same time.

 
CONS –
N/A

 

QUOTE –
Alexis Zorba: You’ve got everything except one thing: madness! A man needs a little madness, or else…
Basil: Or else?
Alexis Zorba: …he never dares cut the rope and be free.

War & Peace (2016 Miniseries)

STORY – 1
DIRECTOR – 1
ACTOR – 1
MUSIC – 1
CULT – 1

VERDICT – 5/5

 
PROS –
1) A grand adaptation of a grand novel. Leo Tolstoy’s masterpiece with a classic happy ending. Primary themes of this classic include love triangles, forgiveness, sacrificing love for family, spirituality, the cycle of karma, etc.
2) Great casting including Jim Broadbent, Brian Cox, Paul Dano, etc.
3) A story is as good as it’s the main villain. This grand story’s grand villain is none other than Napoleon Bonaparte.
4) Rated-R war scenes
5) Andrei and Natasha love story
6) Some of the most fascinating characters of this story are the mild-mannered generous Count Ilya Rostov, and the villain-turned-hero Fedor Dolokhov.

 

CONS –
N/A

 

QUOTE –
Pierre Bezukhov: They say sufferings are misfortunes. But if I was asked, would I stay as I was before I was taken prisoner, or go through it all again? I would say for God’s sake, let me be a prisoner again.

Peaky Blinders (Season 1)

STORY – 0
DIRECTOR – 1
ACTOR – 1
MUSIC – 1
CULT – 0

 

VERDICT – 3/5

 
PROS –
1) The post-World War I saga of Shelby crime family. A definitive role for Cillian Murphy as Thomas Shelby, the head honcho of the gangster family also fighting his PTSD.
2) Sam Neill as Major Campbell, a no-nonsense officer on a mission under the order of Winston Churchill.
3) The greatest asset of this show is its fantastic cinematography and the brave soundtrack especially featuring Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds, right from the opening theme song “Red Right Hand” to great tracks like “Brother, My Cup Is Empty.”
4) Great Costume Design.

 

CONS –
1) The primary run-of-the-mill theme of the rise of a gangster family is now done to death.

 

QUOTE –
Freddie Thorne: You think I can’t handle Tommy Shelby?
Aunt Polly: You can’t. I’m having trouble these days and I’m twice the man you are.

The Favourite (2018)

STORY – 1
DIRECTOR – 1
ACTOR – 1
MUSIC – 1
CULT – 0

VERDICT – 4/5

 
PROS –
1) Yorgos Lanthimos completes his hat-trick of good movies. One of the most gifted contemporary director.
2) A sickly pushover queen finds herself in the middle of two over-ambitious women in early 18th century England.
3) The outstanding trinity of actresses.
4) A tremendous soundtrack for classical music connoisseurs.

 

CONS –
N/A

 

QUOTE –
Queen Anne: Are the people really angry about the land tax?
Duchess of Marlborough: They’ll be angrier when the French are sodomizing their wives and planting their fields with garlic.

Lord of the Flies (1963)

STORY – 1
DIRECTOR – 1
ACTOR – 1
MUSIC – 1
CULT – 1

VERDICT – 5/5

 
PROS –
1) A story of civilization about how men fall for savagery in the absence of law.
2) The inevitable rise of the alpha male.The birth of mythology, fear of the unknown, the formation of tribes, and conflicts. The weak ones stuck with rules and law while the stronger one lives with absolute anarchy.
3) The haunting choir song Kyrie Eleison

 

CONS –
N/A

 

QUOTE –
Kill the pig! Slit her throat! Bash her in!

They Shall Not Grow Old (2018)

STORY – 1
DIRECTOR – 1
ACTOR – n/a
MUSIC – 1
CULT – 1

 

VERDICT – 4/4

 
PROS –
1) The horrors of War in those trenches. Definitive First World War documentary.
2) This documentary is a triumph, an homage to the greatest generation of Britain. A story much needed to be told.
3) Initial 25 minutes in Black&White, snapping to colour the moment the troops landed the battlefields and switching back to Black&White once the war ends.
4) The intense close combat sequence narrated by soldiers with the first-hand experience through “The War Illustrated” magazine.
5) End credits: “Mademoiselle from Armentières”

 

CONS –
N/A

 

QUOTE –
“The only thing that really did annoy me was, when I went back to work after I’d got demobilised, I went down the stores, and the bloke behind the counter was a bloke who I knew. He said, “Where have you been ? On nights ?”