LA PETITE JERUSALEM

Two French sisters explore their options while their Tunisian-born mother frets. Mathilde (Zylberstein) devotes herself to husband & children, while Laura (Valette) studies philosophy & avoids “appropriate” suitors. Insightful look at Sephardic life in multicultural Paris, with Clement especially fine as the woman who runs the Mikva (Jewish ritual bath).  “…my way of writing and…

JAPANESE STORY

Beautifully understated story about culture clash showcasing Collette as a workaholic Australian geologist forced to play tour guide for a visiting Japanese investor. Shot primarily in the vast Australian outback, the cinematography’s hypnotic. The subtle score reaches a poignant intensity as Collette watches her new friend board his flight home. © 09/09/07 Jan Lisa Huttner…

FRIDA

Director Taymor (famous for Broadway’s LION KING) has a fabulous eye. Her life partner, composer Elliot Goldenthal, has a fabulous ear. Together, they’ve created an aesthetic masterpiece celebrating the artistic triumphs of Mexican painter Frida Kahlo & her husband, muralist Diego Rivera. Unfortunately, the brilliant spectacle sometimes overwhelms the actors. © 09/09/07 Jan Lisa Huttner…

THE BALLAD OF JACK & ROSE

Beautifully constructed mood piece walking the tightrope of father/daughter love. Jack’s a 60’s guy of independent means stubbornly clinging to life on an abandoned commune. Rose is his daughter, totally devoted but also aware that he’s sheltered her from the “real” world. Resonates well beyond the specifics of its plot. © 09/09/07 Jan Lisa Huttner…

AFTER THE WEDDING

Given that Suzanne Bier’s last film BROTHERS (also written by Anders Thomas Jensen) made our ’05 TWOZIES list, our expectations were high. WEDDING struck us both as a bit too overstuffed & melodramatic, but the terrific acting won us over. Keep your eyes on “Jørgen” (Lassgård); this is really his story, not Mikkelsen’s. More on…