sábado, 11 de julio de 2009

The Life And Death Of Coronel Blimp

Coronel Blimp was a political cartoon from England during the second world war, meant to parody extreme English behavior, and while the lead looks like the cartoon in the opening and end of the film, this story is completely original and has nothing to do with the cartoon. Instead we have the story of Gen. WinCandy, a very energetic and engaging English soldier who dedicates his whole life to the army. We see his whole life during both world wars, and the war on Africa, and we see the friendships he creates and the women he loves. The film is fantastic, one of the best. I’m a huge fan of The Archers (Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger) and this is one of their most memorable, for good reason. It has their typical brilliant writing, direction and photography, but what stands out most in the film is the acting. Roger Livesey plays the titular General, and he’s the kind of over-the-top English character actor that keeps you engaged even during the most ridiculous moments. There’s also the beautiful Deborah Kerr, who would later go on to appear in Black Narcissus, who plays three roles, that of first love Edith Hunter, future bride Barbara Lynne, and young assistant Angela Cannon. But to me, the best performance comes from Anton Walbrook as Theo Kretschmar-Schuldorff, a German soldier who becomes best friends with the general. He’s quiet, realistic and sympathetic, which is very impressive considering that the film was made in the middle of WW2 against the Nazis. In fact, his speech, where he tries to get back to the country, speaking of his dead wife, his broken country and his Nazi children, is one of the most genuinely beautiful moments in the cinema. I recommend this to all, since it has it all: Action, comedy, romance, entertainment: hell, it’s a total package, and not to be missed.

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