Edward Scissorhands (1990)

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

 

VERDICT – 4/5

 

 
PROS –
1) A scientist died leaving his unfinished humanoid in the Gothic mansion full of steampunk equipments. He’s brought into the town’s community by a woman and soon he becomes the talk of the town attracting new friends and foes.
2) Tim Burton’s trademark gothic protagonist straight out of Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein. In the movie, Burton created 2 distinct worlds. While Edward Scissorhands is dark & gothic, the town is vividly colorful.
3) It’s basically a bedtime fairy-tale of “a beauty and a beast” told by an elderly woman to her granddaughter. The theme is similar to King Kong, The Phantom of the Opera, The Hunchback of Notre Dame, etc.

 
CONS –
N/A

 

 

QUOTE –
Bill: Sweetheart, you can’t buy the necessities of life with cookies.

Jane Eyre (2011)

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

 

VERDICT – 3/5

 

 

 
PROS –
1) The tragic life of an orphan called Jane Eyre who lost her parents in her childhood; treated badly by her aunt who eventually sent her to a charity school for orphans where she suffers more torments from over-strict masters. Finally, she found love, but her misery continues when she discovers at the wedding altar that the man she loves is already married to another woman.
2) Christian morality remains the primary theme of the story. The titular character shows mercy to her aunt at her deathbed by forgiving her. Even after inheriting a fortune from her dead uncle, she decides to share her inheritance among the missionary siblings who gave her shelter. The climax shows her true love to Edward when she accepts him even when he’s a blind man.

 

 

 
CONS –
1) Among various classic novels, this is not a story that survives the test of time. The entire self-sacrificing character of Jane Eyre seems unrealistic at this time.
2) Cary Joji Fukunaga possibly made the best movie adaptation of this novel, but still the story is dated and overall it’s boring.

 

 

 
QUOTE –
Jane Eyre: Am I a machine without feelings? Do you think that because I am poor, plain, obscure, and little that I am soulless and heartless? I have as much soul as you and full as much heart. And if God had possessed me with beauty and wealth, I could make it as hard for you to leave me as I to leave you… I’m not speaking to you through mortal flesh. It is my spirit that addresses your spirit, as it passes through the grave and stood at God’s feet, equal. As we are.
Rochester: As we are.

Sense and Sensibility (1995)

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

 

 

VERDICT – 4/5

 

 

PROS –
1) The love-life of 2 sisters’ devastated by their respective love interests. One man who kept his promise and the other who failed. It’s fascinating to see how much the modern-day rom-coms are influenced by Jane Austen’s classic novels.
2) A huge round of applause for Ang Lee & Emma Thompson for such a delightful adaptation of the classic novel. Emma’s performance was equally gracious.
3) Such a great ensemble of actors. The stoic performances of Alan Rickman and Emma Thompson stand out.

 

 

CONS –
N/A

 

 

QUOTE –
Marianne: Always resignation and acceptance. Always prudence and honour and duty. Elinor, where is your heart?
Elinor Dashwood: What do you know of my heart? What do you know of anything but your own suffering. For weeks, Marianne, I’ve had this pressing on me without being at liberty to speak of it to a single creature. It was forced on me by the very person whose prior claims ruined all my hope. I have endured her exultations again and again whilst knowing myself to be divided from Edward forever. Believe me, Marianne, had I not been bound to silence I could have provided proof enough of a broken heart, even for you.

The Apartment (1960)

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

 

VERDICT – 4/5

 

 
PROS –
1) A lonely man sacrificing his personal life and comfort in order to climb the corporate ladder until he had enough of it.
2) A romantic story of two broken people.
3) Billy Wilder’s crisp writing and tight screenplay without any boring sub-plot.
4) All in all, it’s a Jack Lemmon’s show playing the lovable and pitiful character of C.C. Baxter.

 

 

CONS –
1) Ruined by unofficial Bollywood remakes like Raaste Kaa Patthar (1972) & Yes Boss (1997).

 

 

QUOTE –
C.C. Baxter: Ya know, I used to live like Robinson Crusoe; I mean, shipwrecked among 8 million people. And then one day I saw a footprint in the sand, and there you were.

The Remains of the Day (1993)

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

 

VERDICT – 4/5

 
PROS –
1) A heartfelt story of an old diligent workaholic butler making a last attempt to revive his unfinished and repressed love story.
2) The World War II / Nazi backdrop is only a ruse in this poignant love story of two duty-bound people.
3) Anthony Hopkins’s performance is Oscar-worthy. His stone face reactions as the duty-bound butler concealing his emotions even during the death of his father, or him refusing to answer any auxiliary question to his master’s guests deserve special mention. He was acting through his eyes.
4) The final goodbye in the rain is one heart-rending scene

 
CONS –
N/A

 

 
QUOTE –
Stevens: In my philosophy, Mr. Benn, a man cannot call himself well-contented until he has done all he can to be of service to his employer. Of course, this assumes that one’s employer is a superior person, not only in rank, or wealth, but in moral stature.

The Year of Living Dangerously (1982)

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

 

VERDICT – 3/5

 
PROS –
1) Linda Hunt as the male dwarf Billy Kwan gave a performance of a lifetime. A female actress winning an Oscar for playing a male character is no small achievement. The romance angle is a sub-plot around Billy playing the central character. His final monologue revealing himself as the master puppeteer is extremely moving.
2) L’enfant by Vangelis.
3) A rare movie featuring turbulent politics of 1960s Indonesia, Sukarno, and 30 September Movement.

 

 

CONS –
1) It’s a one-time watch boring romantic-war-drama.

 
QUOTE –
Billy Kwan: I believed in you. I thought you were a man of light. That’s why I gave you those stories you think are so important. I made you see things. I made you feel something about is right. I gave you my trust. So did Jill. I created you.

Your Name. (2016)

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

VERDICT – 3/4

 
PROS –
1) A wholesome fantasy-romance.
2) Makoto Shinkai is now the Richard Curtis animation-romance genre. Just like The Garden of Words (2013), this movie is a visual delight.

 
CONS –
N/A

 

QUOTE –
Mitsuha Miyamizu: There’s no way we could meet. But one thing is certain. If we see each other, we’ll know

A Walk to Remember (2002)

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

 

VERDICT – 3/5

 
PROS –
1) Small town teenage love story of a tough guy and a simple girl with a tragic ending.
2) A decent soundtrack but for a particular audience.

 
CONS –
1) Run-of-the-mill cliched teenage romance from Nicholas Sparks. There is one available for every generation.

 

QUOTE –
Landon: I’m sorry she never got her miracle.
Reverend Sullivan: She did. It was you.

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.

Punch-Drunk Love (2002)

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

 

VERDICT – 5/5

 
PROS –
1) A love story of a sociopath. I see shades of Marty (1955).
2) Unique soundtrack by Jon Brion including “Hands and Feet”.
3) Adam Sandler vs Philip Seymour Hoffman epic confrontation over the phone.
4) Exceptional cinematography by Robert Elswit

 

CONS –
N/A

 

QUOTE –
Barry: I have a love in my life. It makes me stronger than anything you can imagine.