The Golden Globetrotter I


intouchables
Of all the nominees for a Golden Globe award, 70th edition, the first one I’ve seen was Intouchables (The Untouchables) directed by Olivier Nakache and Eric Toledano. Sadly I don’t’ remember much of it. But as far as I can recall is, at first glance, about this white rich guy in a wheelchair (François Cluzet) and a black guy (Omar Sy) taking care of him. Based on a real story it depicts the friendship between the two but the real emphasis is on France’s ethnic, social and political profile. It’s more like an anti-Sarkozy statement than a story about friendship.

It’s a movie about how the “banlieues” and the center should reach out for each other and form a solid bond for the good of The Nation. The rigid, white upper class lusts for life again through an adrenaline shot from the energetic, colored lower class that gains acceptance and financial satisfaction in return.

A personal history is enlarged to reflect a desired, post-Sarkozy, status-quo for a whole nation.

royal
En kongelig affære (A Royal Affair) directed by Nikolaj Arcel is also based on reality yet not on private destinies but on public ones. Denmark is embracing the ideals of the Enlightenment about state and civil rights through an insane king (Mikkel Boe Følsgaard) influenced by his German physician (Mads Mikkelsen) who falls in love with the queen (Alicia Vikander) who’s British.

An ordinary love triangle is ennobled by the most revolutionary reforms it produced in 18th century Europe. The tragedy that naturally follows is caused by the good old hybris, the exact type that later led to the fall of the Enlightenment itself: excess.

En kongelig affære is worthy of our undivided attention as a history lesson but also for its first class acting performances and exquisite directorial pacing.

game
Then Game Change directed by Jay Roach came along and I found myself on a very different page of political history. Recent history has this undeserved quality of being ridiculous while nobody’s laughing. If there is any laughter is far from being relaxed and is usually followed by frustration, disgust, anger and panic on as many different levels as there are earthlings.

There is a positive distancing effect in contemplating contemporary political history through art that can add bits of catharsis to our laughter. Still, the world really sucks and thank gods for Julianne Moore, Ed Harris and Woody Harrelson for making it easier to bear.

To be continued….

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