It's Thursday, and that means it's time for the second entree in the Valentine's Edition of Thursday Movie Picks! This week, for me, was the hardest so far of this year's themes to narrow down, as I had a slew of films I wanted to mention here. For one reason or another, these three stood out to me (actually, they all stand out because of their tremendous Lead Actresses anchoring the films in such brilliantly complex ways) and so here we are with my picks for the week.
|Love in the Afternoon (Billy Wilder, 1957)|
By this time in her career, Audrey Hepburn was already an Oscar winner for her breakout role in Roman Holiday, but for me this is the moment where her star truly shines for the first time in her career (a career that I adore) and should have been the moment that Oscar knocked on her door because as the blossoming Ariane, Hepburn is spectacular. She charms, delights and then ultimately crafts such texture around this young woman falling in love, finding her own and becoming a woman. It's a shame her costar is as wooden as a 2x4. How in the world can you be that stiff around such elegance?
|Limelight (Charlie Chaplin, |
The love that blossoms between the aged Calvero and the stunning Thereza is so beautiful to watch because it never once feels forced or disingenuous. Thereza's adoration of her teacher, his strengths, modesty and talent is so obvious, but it is his inner person that draws her so close to him, even when he pushes her away (all for her benefit and happiness) that you can't help but break for them, ache for them and ultimately fall in love with them!
|The Reader (Stephen Daldry, 2008)|
Ef you all, I love this movie. I love this story. I sob...SOB!!! And yes, Hanna does some terrible things, not the least of which includes preying on a 15 year old boy and MURDERING a bunch of people, but her inner person is so conflicted and shocking human that you can't help (or at least I can't) help but sympathize with her and pray for her happiness, her peace. Balk all you want, but I buy this love, start to finish.