Tuesday, November 9, 2010

A Few More Movies

While in Pune I watched three more movies that I must quickly run through before I forget.

The first was 'Finding Neverland' which has a brilliant star cast that you can watch the movie for the cats alone - Johnny Depp, Kate Winslet, Dustin Hoffman to name the ones I know. Anyway, its a period film, about Johnny Depp who is a playwright and director of his own plays (married, and not too successful at the plays at the beginning). Dustin Hoffman appears to be the one who is producing the Depp plays. After a huge disaster Depp goes off to write his next in a quiet spot in a park and ends up meeting the family of Kate Winslet, who has been widowed recently, and has a flock of small children. They get along very well, the kids and Depp and Ms. Winslet and Depp writes his play inspired a bit by all this.Of course all the time that he spends with the widow and her family get his wife upset enough to walk out. The new play starts to rave reviews and is a hit. Unfortunately Winslet is dying - so Depp stages the play for her at home and shows her a glimpse of the magical 'Neverland' which he says appears to only those who believe in it. A cute movie but not enough moments for me save the one when he shows her Neverland and talks of believing in the impossible.

Then I saw 'The Last King of Scotland'. This movie began with the bold assertion that it is based on real people and events. It is about Dr. Garraghan, a medical school graduate who goes off to Uganda in the early 70s to serve the poor. He is doing okay until he bumps into the new dictator of Uganda, Idi Amin, in a great coincidence. Idi Amin likes the young man immensely and makes him one of his closest confidantes and trusts him implicitly. It is all very well as long as things are going right but when things go wrong the young doctor realises the other side of Amin, who he thought was his great benefactor. Isolated by all others for his proximity to Amin, and living in constant fear at his inability to run, Garraghan, develops an intimate relationship with one of Amin's wives. Found out by the almost schizophrenic dictator who kills people in the most brutal way possible, the doctor is condemned to die but survives and has one chance to escape with a flight of hostages in the Entebbe airport who have been granted permission to leave by Amin who incidentally crowns himself as the 'King of Scotland' during one of his press conferences. It is riveting watching into one of the bloodiest and most unpopular regimes that the world has ever seen.

The third movie was 'Jonathan Livingstone Seagull' which is made from the iconic book of the same name by Richard Bach. It is about a seagull that does not believe in limits set by the flock. The young and ambitious seagull constantly thinks of flying higher, faster, improvising, defying the rules of the flock and even giving up the security offered by the elders of the flock. Jonathan survives his experiments and finds a world of his own where he finds true freedom, in his search for perfection. Great visuals of the sky and the sea, as the sea gull speaks to you and his friends. The soothing, uplifting baritone of Neil Diamond helps you soar as well as he sings a few songs in the background. However, I think I must read the book once again to get the hang of it, now.

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