With lots of bang and boom "Olympus Has Fallen" adds one more fast-paced and explosive battle to the action genre, and another physically impressive and courageous hero gets to prove his fighting skills by saving a US-president and, unsurprisingly, the world from brutal terrorists.
Serene and tranquil life in a rural town of the provincial North comes to an end in Gus Van Sants new film "Promised Land", when a couple of strangers arrive, attempting to coax the resident farmers into accepting their company's offer for drilling rights on their land. Yet the so called fracking technique in search of gas is controversial and slowly the inevitable conflict between a company man and an environmentalist starts building up.
Reminiscent of the classic criminal comedy "The Pink Panther" the title sequence in "Gambit" already hints at the spirit of the entertaining con game, we're going to see: Bullied by his abusive boss an art curator grabs the opportunity to get even when he stumbles upon a forged Monet painting. With the help of the painting's owner, who happens to be a Texan rodeo queen, he schemes to make his boss pay a fortune for the fake painting. Presenting this story with – not only – British humour adds further Gemini-quality to it.
"The Odd Life of Timothy Green" is about a couple who can't have children, yet their wish and their imagination is so strong, that suddenly one night a ten-year-old boy grows in the garden: a boy with leafs at his feet and the ability to touch people's hearts. This is what this film also aspires to, hence the magic realism and the imaginative exploration of a wide range of emotions arising from both having and being a child…
In 1968 a manic Soul fan helps four young Aborigine women make their way into show business as "The Sapphires". Billed as Australia's answer to 'The Supremes', they perform in Vietnam, entertaining US troops. Watching these initially somewhat apprehensive and insecure girls open up, explore the expressivity of their own voices, gain confidence and stage presence and experience themselves as celebrated stars is a heart-warming Leo-show.
A relationship that started to bloom in 1995 in a train to Vienna meanwhile has made its way into film history. "Before Midnight" is the third instalment, now focusing not on sweet romance but on the couple's trivial daily routine, where there's no room for the former deep exchange of wishes and thoughts, because appointments have to be arranged, kids have to be taken care of, and all the pragmatic tuning to "normal family life" takes its toll. Thus the original Libra-theme in this long-time relationship is now complemented with inevitable Virgo-features.
Dancing together is one of the most beautiful forms of expression for any relationship. This idea is illustrated in "Tango Libre" in various dancing scenes: a Tango lesson with a woman and a man dancing together for the first time, a mother coaxing her bashful son into dancing wildly with her in their kitchen, a prisoner stealing a moment of dancing with his wife at the end of the visiting hour, inmates dancing Tango to the rhythm their fellow convicts are clapping amidst the watching guards… These men dancing together are wonderful scenes of raw beauty; I've rarely seen more exciting Tango on screen so far!
Truly a "hell of a night" – or rather "a night in hell" – is the centre of attention in "The Purge". In 2022 America has become a well-controlled society that believes to have found the perfect solution to crime, proclaiming the Scorpio-motif of catharsis as a general principle: one night each year it is allowed to kill, rape and pillage without legal consequences. The family of a security expert, who has made good money in the wake of this "purging ritual" experiences a night full of horrors, yet the movie also appears to be a wicked satire about the darkest aspects of our way of dealing with violence.
"Man of Steel" is about the origins of one of the most famous graphic novel superheroes and there is a reason why this reminds me of Nietzsche's concept of the "Uebermensch": we all know this hero under the alias of Superman. When his father dispatches baby Kal into space, so he would survive the destruction of planet Krypton, he also assigns him the mission of making a better world. The father believes his son "will give the people an ideal to strive towards", that he'll even "be a god to them". According to these slightly megalomaniacal expectations, the movie offers monumental special effects and lofty pictures of our planet.
Talking about the much appraised "The Place Beyond the Pines" one cannot fail to notice words like responsibility and guilt, ethic and law, estrangement and isolation. In a serious and grave manner, accompanied by melancholy music, this film conveys a tale of fathers trying hard to do right and their sons nevertheless growing up wrong. It's a tale about how moral integrity, determination, discipline and effort won't necessarily save you from making your kids carry a tough and heavy burden through their lives.
A group of neo-hippies wish to save the Amazonian rain forest. They pursue the idea of raising money for this purpose by sexual libertinage and selling self-made pornographic material on the internet. "Fuck for Forest" is an award winning documentary accompanying the group on their quest while showing the difficulties the often misunderstood anarchists have to confront as they are very much perceived as crazy weirdoes or perverts.
At first glance this film is dealing with a typical Aquarius-theme: being different, being an outsider: "Laurence Anyways" is about a man who wants to live as a woman with his female lover. Yet the very special and ecstatic visual style the young director has to offer gives the film a major Pisces-quality. Music, choreography, dream sequences are used to create poetic images and put together in an almost surreal kind of narrative, that eventually even dares to ask about the possibility of unconditional love…
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.
28-May-2018, 08:30 UT/GMT
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