All posts filed under: Film

‘Project Fifty’ by Little White Lies

As we all know far too well, people’s tastes tend to differ quite a lot and films are certainly no exception here. Before even seeing a flick in its entirety, we’re inevitably biased by trailers, posters, reviews and most of all by our personal likes and dislikes of certain actors, directors, genres or themes. Still, there are definitely a few movies that almost everyone refers to as outstanding, timeless classics. Whether it’s Casablanca, The Godfather, Forrest Gump or Oldboy, you’ll find pretty much everything that shattered, revolutionised or redefined the world of cinema in IMDb’s infamous Top 250 films of all time. Well, but how on earth does, let’s say Charlie Chaplin’s remarkable City Lights from 1931 (#37) get beaten by 21st century sci-fi blockbuster Inception (#15), you might think? Fair question. Maybe because it oddly feels like comparing apples and oranges. ‘So why don’t we just cherish the most outstanding film of each year instead of compiling a general highscore list?’ was probably the initial thought behind Little White Lies’ exciting ‘Project Fifty’. Genius! In celebration …

Mistaken For Strangers @ BFI Film Festival

It must’ve felt quite surreal after a decade of being that talented sleeper, that clockwork bomb hidden in the shadows of groundbreaking fame. With the release of their fifth studio album ‘High Violet’ in 2010, ‘The National’ finally evolved from critic’s long-standing darlings into one of most celebrated rock bands at present, playing sold out shows all over the world. And their follow-up ‘Trouble will find me’ turned out to be barely less phenomenal. Longingly waiting for the new material to arrive, an announcement nearly slipped my attention: ‘Mistaken for Strangers’, a music documentary by Tom Berninger, who followed his brother’s band on a six-month world tour. Opening the prestigious ‘Tribeca’ in April, hopping from one independent film festival to another and receiving widely positive reviews, the project eventually appeared on the list for the ‘BFI London Film Festival’. Well, what a happy coincidence. Everyone expecting a big budget documentary, elaborate tracking shots, crystal-clear HD-sequences, fancy interview locations and countless minutes of concert footage: Well, that’s not quite it. It’s not a film about The …

The Jewish-American Gangster in ‘The Godfather Part II’

Well, it’s been a long while since I watched ‘The Godfather Part II” for the very first time. Presumably in our teenage days, when boys were fascinated by the rebellious lifestyle of those gangster bosses on screen, eagerly watching flicks like ‘Goodfellas’ or ‘Casino’. The legendary classics, so to speak. Certainly, back then I wasn’t old enough to fully grasp what it meant to be an Italian, Irish or – slightly less obvious – Jewish gangster in American cinema. This exactly is the initial point, which the talk “Kosher Nostra – Screening the Memory of the Jewish-American Gangster in The Godfather II” by film scholar Dr. Jonathan Munby last Thursday wanted to approach. The senior lecturer of Lancaster University and fellow of the renown Du Bois Institute at Harvard was invited by the Leo Baeck Institute to take part in its lecture series ‘Film Talk: The Jewish Villain’ at the Wiener Library London. Convincingly he carved out the clash of fiction and reality in the representation of Jewish-American gangsters throughout the 20th century with great emphasis on …