Film Neo-Noir

TISZTA SZIVVEL (2017)

kills-on-wheels

A film by Attila Till

Cast: Szabolcs Thuróczy, Zoltán Fenyvesi, Ádám Fekete

Tiszta szívvel in english means Pure heart. But the english title is Kills on Wheels 

Ruspaszov, a former firefighter, has been in a wheelchair for three years following an accident at work. Cynicism and alcohol help him less and less to endure his condition. Zolika, just 20 years old and a comic book enthusiast, has always been in his wheelchair. Their improbable encounter will give them  a taste for life. Especially when Rupaszov, after getting out of jail is putting himself at the service of the head of the local mafia, decides to use their handicap as cover …

kills-on-wheels-e1468431659549

Here is a brilliant funny film done a la Quentin Tarantino do I have your attention now and yes it is a Hungarian film. A film about handicapped on a wheel chair in the heart of the mafia why not? It has not been done before and could her funny at times.Rados, and become drug traffickers. A simple  story, but which conceals under its plot much more complex theories.

Rupaszov is an ex-fireman who despite his accident turns to alcohol because it is the only thing to do so I thinks. He is like into a deep sleep where no one is able to help him. Zolika, on the other hand, is disabled by birth ( Zoltán Fenyvesi) dreaming of becoming a recognized cartoonist. But to whom inspiration is lacking, because too many  examinations and medical treatments that he has under go. Those two are going to meet and in a funny way is going to need one an other in order live  life to the fullest. This tale tells the story of freedom beyond disability. There as they get to know each other they will be in tune with each other giving them some kind of balance. It is funny at times. Here is the third film by Till but it is the first time that is distributed  in France. This one kick ass.

kills-on-wheels-trailer-700x422

THE USUAL SUSPECTS (1995)

the-usual-suspects

A film by Bryan Singer

Cast: Kevin Spacey, Gabriel Byrne, Chazz Palminteri 

The usual suspects are five men: Dean Keaton (Gabriel Byrne), an ex-cop-turned-crook ; Michael McManus (Stephen Baldwin), a psycho man; Todd Hockney (Kevin Pollak), a hardware specialist; Fred Fenster (Benicio Del Toro), McManus’ partner; and Verbal Klint (Kevin Spacey), a crippled con man. As the movie opens, these five are being in a lineup. A truckload of stolen guns has been hijacked and the cops, led by U.S. Customs Special Agent Dave Kujan (Chazz Palminteri), will to get their man. But no one cracks, and as the criminals sit together in jail waiting to be charged or released, they hatch a plan for an elaborate emerald heist.

Yes it is cult film Thursday and here is the one that I love and seen on the big screen Twice now and once on cable and I still love this film. Christopher McQuarrie’s inspiration for the character of Keyser Soze was a real-life murderer by the name of John List, who murdered his family and then disappeared for 17 years. The story is told in two different time frames. In the present, looking back on events, Klint sits across a desk from Kujan, unfolding the tale as he remembers it. Did it really happen? Nothing seems to be as they appear. Director Bryan Singer, who debuted in 1993 has crafted this story as a film Neo-Noir Thriller. The film borrows heavily from dozens of sources — Hitchcock, Scorsese, the Coen brothers, and just about every master of the genre, past or present nothing wrong with that. Singer’s greatest strength is to collect moments from other sources and using them in his own mold like does Quentin Tarantino. The serpentine plot provides the perfect playground in which a series of deliciously devious characters can have fun.The Usual Suspects constantly raises the suspense. Slowly the audience is drawn into the story. And yes they will be deceptions, going back to present and future. Singer will keep you guessing and distracted somewhere else , he is like a magician. The Usual Suspects doesn’t take any prisoners.The cast is enigmatic.Kevin Spacey ,  throws in the best performance of the film, is completely convincing. The cast is perfect. The Usual Suspects is an accomplished film Neo-noir. Ranked #10 on the American Film Institute’s list of the 10 greatest films in the genre “Mystery” in June 2008. Shot on a budget of $6 million over a period of 35 days. See it now.

the-usual-suspects-2

the-ususal-suspects-1995

ARES (2016)

ares_affiche-f88b7

A film by Jean-Patrick Benes

Cast: Ola Rapace, Micha Lescot, Thierry Hancisse

Paris 2035, the world order has changed. With its 15 million unemployed, France is now a poor country. The population oscillates between revolt and resignation and finds an outlet in ultraviolent televised fights where the participants are doped legally and where everything is permitted.   Reda, known as Ares, is a veteran who lives on small jobs  for the police. Everything will change when his sister is arrested and he must do everything possible to save them: she and her daughters.

Inspired more precisely by the recent economic crisis in Greece and Spain, the filmmaker imagined a devastated Paris, occupied by the homeless and gangrened by misery. The  society of consumer dominates to such an extent that the man’s body itself becomes a commodity that can be sold to the pharmaceutical laboratories which are the only ones making a lot of money. Paris is here devastated in ruin almost it almost is a waste land  by its own: the inhabitants, disillusioned, live in makeshift shelters, at the foot of monuments where they are abandoned. The low-budget film here will give you the chilled that could become a possibility, look at Greece where the country is broke and people lost everything even their saving and retirement plan gone in smoke. Well Europe gave them an ultimatum and we are trying to get a solution to the problem. Thank god it didn’t happen like that but it could. If the extreme urbanization is realistic, it is mainly because the film team set up  in China: Shanghai made it possible to offer the images of skyscrapers, within a dehumanized business district . Shenzhen, the capital of buildings, also served as a backdrop to make La Défense as spectacular as possible. The filmed images were then integrated in Paris to combine this urbanization with the symbolic monuments of the city, between the Eiffel Tower and the Louvre. Not too bad there this is how you contain the budget from going up. It is a terrific piece of cinema film neo-noir and dark. The actor does their jobs beautifully well here. It is a film that deserved to be seen.

ares-film-3

ares

THE ARDENNES (2016)

les-ardennes-225x300

A film by Robin  Pront 

Cast: Veerle Baetens, Jan Bijvoet, Eric Godon

This feature directorial debut by Belgian Robin Pront starts off with a crime scene. Dave (Jeroen Perceval) leaves his brother Kenny (Kevin Janssens) at the scene and drives off with Sylvie (Veerle Baetens), Kenny’s girlfriend. Four years later Kenny gets out of prison. Dave promise  to his mother (Viviane de Muynck) that he will keep his brother out of trouble.

To all fans of film Neo-Noir put this one on your list, do not miss it, seriously.  Having said that our premier week in France is  Wednesday so I rush this morning to the movie theater to see this film. It was in the morning there was only me and an other guy there. When the film was over we look at each other and said almost at the same time “dam! that was so good”. And yes it is , but I can not reveal nothing about it and that is going to be a tough one. Here it is first I can say that the film focuses on Kenny adjustment to the every day life trying to go straight and his bother to help him out. Soon tension will start to rise in this grippy Belgium film. It’s an unexpectedly exhilarating climax that will grab you by the balls and hit you in the gut. Pront film it as dark as it can go with the weather on his side rainy, cold, as grey as it can get.The film’s retro synth soundtrack adds to the nostalgia of times gone by for the story and tension meter will raise then and come down to its conclusion. The Ardennes is a forest in Belgium as far as the eye can see just in case you are wondering. The actors delivers their roles beautifully well here. You see Korean cinema has reinvented themselves with  creative story telling and great if no outstanding stunts but now Belgium, it looks like are doing the same thing they are going to be the one to watch.

les-ardennes-robin-pront-953476

les ardennes

 

TRIPLE 9 (2016)

Triple 9

A film by John Hillcoat

Cast: Casey Affleck, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Anthony Mackie , Woody Harrelson, Aaron paul, Kate Winslet, Norman Reedus

Here is a film Neo-Noir that could of been great but did not deliver, even has a few surprises but didn’t pan out as a slow burning thriller. Plus the cast for perfect with a bunch of A-list stars. It is a good film but not great.

Michael (Chiwetel Ejiofor)  a bank robber with Special Forces training who pulls off jobs with his military pal, Russell (“The Walking Dead”‘s Norman Reedus), a pair of corrupt cops in Marcus (Anthony Mackie) and Jorge (Clifton Collins Jr.), and Russell’s drug addict brother, Gabe (Aaron Paul). They pull a bank heist targeting a specific deposit box. Of course something goes wrong because of one team member that almost got them caught. There is an involvement with a Russian-Israeli headed by Irina Vlaslov (Kate Winslet) running her mobster husband’s business while he rots in a gulag. She has been using Michael as her go to boy. In the mix there is the new guy Chris (Casey Affleck) who is transfer to the unit and is clueless who are the bad cops, well at first anyway and there is is uncle played by Woody Harrelson.

triple 9-2

Chris is pretty much the only redeemable character in the entire film, with Chris’ uncle who happens to be investigating the robberies by Michael’s crew. The film is mostly focus on Micheal and his crew. The thing is this film is predictable as hell it is like deja-vu. The actors does a great job to deliver their roles even Winslet pulls it off but she is a little off at times something does not click, although she is not recognizable you have to pay you attention. Other then that it should scratch the itch for fans of this Neo-Noir film. Like I said it could been great but it is just good and watchable.

(Left to right) Woody Harrelson and Casey Affleck in TRIPLE 9.

SUBURRA (2015)

suburra 2015

A film by Stefano Sollima

Cast: Greta Scarano, Pierfrancesco Favino, Jean-Hugues Anglade

Here is a great one from the director Sollima who directed the series Gomorra  And yes it is about the mafia in rome and trust me it is brutal but very well written.

The Suburra is in the old Rome where crime rules it has brothel, bistros and that is where some politicians goes to meet members of the mafia. Nothing is really change in Rome that is the way it has been for centuries. The year is 2011, a week away from the fall of the government . In a sort of countdown to the Apocalyse announced at the beginning of the film, in  Rome flooded by rain, we are introduced to different and apparently unconnected worlds. So you have the political world with the honourable Malgradi (Pierfrancesco Favino), a greedy and depraved PR manager; the world of VIP parties with Sebastiano (Elio Germano), a  social climber; the underworld of the coastal area of Rome with Number 8 (Alessandro Borghi), the protagonist , the heir to a powerful family that manages the area. Then there’s the ‘Samurai’ (Claudio Amendola), a former member of the Magliana Gang, who seems the most harmless but he is the one who is the mediator between the families and then some. Manfredi (Adamo Dionisi), the boss of a  cutthroat family of gypsy loan sharks; Viola (Greta Scarano), the drug addicted girlfriend of Number 8, and Sabrina (Giulia Elettra Gorietti), an escort who works with minors. Everyone interest is in this property waterfront in Ostia which is going to be  a new Las Vegas full of hotels, clubs and casinos. In the same week, the Pope steps down. (although this actually happened just over a year later).

suburra_4

And yes here you have it but has you know human being are consumed by greed and only the strong will survive. Everyone wants a piece of the pie. The thing that I love in this film is that at the beginning a person will die but that other person will start talking and the word of mouth goes around and set in motion the story. There is no heroes in this story just a bunch of criminal who want more money and power to the point it will consume them and blind side them in not seeing the dude with the gun. The story is from the novel from the novel of the same name by Giancarlo De Cataldo (who also wrote Romanzo Criminale . The cinematography here  is at times gritty and seedy, other times soft and flashy. The music is like you never heard it before and fits the film perfectly well and is used to build the tension that will flow in the vein of the actors. So I say to you do not miss this one.

suburra

SOLACE (2015)

solace 2015

A film by Afonso Poyart

Cast: Colin Farrell, Jeffrey Dean Morgan, Anthony Hopkins 

An enigmatic serial killer is rampant in Atlanta, leaving the FBI totally distraught. Whatever they do, investigators still have a late start , as if the killer could anticipate their movements in advance! In desperation, they turn to Dr. John Clancy, a retired psychic whose visions have helped them in the dossier passé. Desperate  , Clancy quickly guess why the FBI is unable to trap the killer. May the game of cat and mouse begin.

Here is a thriller by Afonso Poyart that is interesting enough to watch with a little twist there. Okay a little predictable but what is not those days. It began by a series of killing a puncture wound in the back of the neck. It is a serial killer that is making his mark and they can’t figure out what is motive. Here comes into play a psychic well-known (Anthony Hopkins) who has helped the FBI in the past with agent Agent Joe Merriweather (Jeffrey Dean Morgan). Clancy (Anthony Hopkins) sees visions bit of pieces at first but does not know what to make of it. Agent Katherine Cowles does not believe that a psychic can help them. This thriller is moving at a steady pace and the tension is building up as the story reveals more of what is going on. I appreciate the fact the conversation of the serial killer and Clancy. Like I said a little bit predictable but Hopkins here carries the picture the other thing is that the serial killer is shown towards the  end of the film. The motivations of the killer raise ethical issues are also addressed during the movie and they surfaced later elsewhere until the conclusion of the film that looks totally renewed on the role of one of the mediums.

solace 2015

hqdefault