Thursday, May 18, 2017
Thursday Movie Picks: The Renaissance
For the third week of May of 2017 as part of the Thursday Movie Picks series hosted by Wanderer of Wandering Through the Shelves. We venture into the world of the Renaissance. A period during the 14th to the 17th Century where it moved out of the medieval age and into a period which of cultural advancement as well as the discovery of new worlds. Here are three films set in that period that showcases the best and worst examples of those times.
1. The New World
Terrence Malick’s dramatic interpretation of the Jamestown colony founding, depending on what cut of the film, is truly one of the finest films set in a historical period. Set in the early 17th Century, the film is a look of a world discovered by Europeans as they try to share and deal with the natives only for things to go wrong as much of it is told from the perspective of Pocahontas as well as Captain John Smith and Pocahontas’ future husband John Rolfe. Featuring the beautiful cinematography of Emmanuel Lubezki as well as a top-notch cast, the film is definitely one of the finest films of the 21st Century so far.
2. Ivan the Terrible
Originally meant to be a three-part film on the life of the czar who ruled Russia from 1533 to 1547 as it explores a man trying to make Russia into an empire. Released in two parts, Sergei Eisenstein’s film explores a man’s willingness to unite a country despite the terrible deeds he does. With the first part released in 1944 and the second part in 1958 just ten years after Eisenstein’s death. It’s a film that explores a man trying to deal with the chaos in his country as well as the forces outside as it is this very unconventional yet daunting film.
3. Aguirre, the Wrath of God
From one of cinema’s great madmen in Werner Herzog comes the first of five fruitful collaborations with actor Klaus Kinski in this story of a conquistador trying to find a lost city of gold in the Amazon. It’s a study of madness and obsession as it is shot on location in the Peruvian Amazon with additional locations in Machu Picchu to give the film an authenticity that is kind of lacking with most period films. Kinski’s performance is definitely astonishing to watch as there is something about him that is fucking crazy yet it is also fascinating to see him be so determined. It’s a film that really captures the idea of men trying to enter a new world to find something only to succumb to their own follies.
© thevoid99 2017