Apart from the action-fest “G.I. Joe: Retaliation“, there are also Aries-adventures of the realistic and factual kind in cinema this month: “Roraima: Climbing the Lost World” is a documentation about three free climbers with the “incredible urge to hit the road”. The film accompanies them on their trip to South America, where they want to climb a yet unconquered mountain defying all strains, risks and throwbacks. “Can we do it or can we not” is the challenge they want to face...
To rather keep past and thus familiar things (or to win them back) than set off for something new might sometimes be connected to the reluctance to let go, which is quite typical for Taurus. The comedy “Playing For Keeps” (the desire of keeping things in your possession already being in the title) is set in a safe and sound, upper-class suburb in Virginia, where a former soccer-star is making desperate efforts to regain wealth and his ex-wife. He starts coaching his son’s soccer team, so he might become closer to his family again, but some of the player’s mothers start closing in on him with sensual advances. To make his own little world safe and sound again, he will have to prove steadfast and persistent.
Gemini-analogies like traffic, learning and everyday life are combined in the German-French documentary “You Drive Me Crazy“, showing three people trying hard to obtain a driving license in a foreign country: there is a woman from Korea in Bavaria, an American in Japan, and a German in India. The enormous cultural differences in what appears to be a simple everyday activity make for astounding and quite entertaining difficulties in communicating and demonstrates how multifaceted even the everyday world of car-driving is.
“The Broken Circle Breakdown” is a soulful film from Belgium with lots of bluegrass music, emotional drama and a touching family story that goes straight to your heart. It’s about a couple with a somewhat unusual lifestyle, whose little daughter becomes seriously ill. This heartbreaking story is told in such a warm and sensitive way that although it’s advisable to have a handkerchief at hand, sentimental kitsch is avoided.
The not very subtle comedy "The Incredible Burt Wonderstone" deals with such Leo-themes as authentic uniqueness and creativity, however it’s also about self-importance, stardom, swaggering and the appetite for making a show of yourself: Two famous Las Vegas based magicians get into trouble as their friendship suffers because one of them is fostering his star attitude. In addition their popularity is dwindling because of a sensation-seeking street conjuror, who scores attention with his downright masochistic “illusions”. As in the friendship motif Leo’s counterpart Aquarius is also expressed in the movie’s bizarreness, yet above all the film pays homage to stage magic.
As an epitome of uptight bourgeois desires for prosperity coupled with industriousness, and additionally as a time of tidily discriminated gender roles, the nineteen-fifties provide the appropriate Virgo-setting for a neat comedy bringing back memories of an almost forgotten craft: typewriting. In “Mademoiselle Populaire” a young country-girl moves to the city to pursue her dream job as a secretary. Perfecting her typewriting skills soon becomes her most important everyday work – and certainly there’s a decent love story too... Remember Doris Day?
The typical Libra-movie is an elegant, slightly cerebral and witty film on relationships. The humour in the British Comedy “I Give It a Year” is a little bit to coarse to fit that pattern completely, it even hints at Scorpio when it plays with taboos. Yet this “anti-rom-com” following a newly wed couple through their first year together is nonchalant and easygoing enough to let the eternal cycle of coming together and coming apart appear gracefully refreshing.
The vengeance-thriller “Dead Man Down” is about the encounter of two traumatized people (Colin Farrell and remarkable Noomi Rapace). Both of their lives are affected by buried secrets, deep wounds and an all-dominant need for vengeance, which quickly leads to a dangerous entanglement of their stories. Pain and guilt, manipulation and extortion drive the situation to a life-threatening crisis, leading to genuine transformation in the end...
Salman Rushdie is known as a writer committed to criticizing ideology, and as a result hunted by dogmatists, still having a price put on his head. “Midnight’s Children” is based on one of his novels. It narrates the life stories of group of people born at the very moment of India’s separation from Great Britain, widely elaborating on the path toward independency, the political aftermath and Indian society. This is a film similar to an oriental carpet: rife with exotic and exuberant imagery.
The Capricornian world of law and order is not always what it seems. In a crime thriller such as “Broken City” it never is. A mayor makes evidence disappear on a case of self-administered justice. The culprit is a policeman who after the incident becomes a private detective, hired a couple of years later by the very same mayor to investigate his wife. Allegedly this is about adultery, but then a murder happens and the background of the whole story turns out to be a scheme of financial and political ambitions, to which law and order are little more than useful words.
A bizarre kind of humour, broken rules and outrageous provocation are some of the Aquarius-features, Urs Odermatts eccentric film “Der böse Onkel” (“The evil uncle”) is saturated with. The warped editing has a distancing effect and makes the film look like a jigsaw puzzle, narrating about a mother who many years ago has moved with her daughter to a remote Swiss village and is now accusing the highly regarded sports teacher of sexually abusing her daughter and other teenagers. She thus antagonizes the village community, which is expressing another Aquarius-theme: being an outsider, alienation and strangeness. Defying and distorting visual and narrative conventions this film itself is a stranger among the usual cinema fare, where such a radically experimental approach is rare.
Oblivion is a very Pisces-like state of unawareness and forgetfulness, it may even be transcendental sometimes, but “Oblivion” is also a science fiction film, thus being connected with Aquarius. However, all of its impressive technical gadgetry serves the purpose of creating a visually overwhelming world, where humans live under a grave illusion after earth has been destroyed by aliens some time ago. Eventually the individual is sacrificed for a greater good and in the end the story even the touches the motifs of the doppelganger and oneness. The trailer alone reminded me very much of “The Matrix” …
The Cinemascope is meant to give an overview of current movies and their main themes from an astrosemiotical perspective (i.e.: regarding film as semiotic system and translating it into the astrological semiotic system). A well made movie not only has a story and a certain theme, it also provides a special atmosphere, a certain feeling and it draws us into its very own world. This basic quality that is contrived through characters, plot, setting and many other components also translates into one or more astrological principles. Quite simply: a fast-paced action-flick confronts us with plain Aries energy, a horror-movie evokes Scorpio-like abysmal depths and fears etc. We step out of the theatre and – if the film succeeded in sucking us in – find ourselves dwelling on and engaging in that special energetic quality.