Tuesday, 8 December 2009

(500) Films of Empire - Day 84

464 - Seven Brides For Seven Brothers - 2 stars
What a plot! A man walks into town one day and decides to get married so quickly finds a wife. She becomes sick of sharing the home with his six brothers so she devises a plan to get them married and off the farm quick sharp. And how will she do this? Through the medium of song and dance of course!
This leads to a truly barnstorming sequence (held at a barn raising event, maybe its where the expression came from?) where the brothers court the local ladies. Achieved through an impressive 10 minute dance number that contains terrific dance moves mixed with acrobatics.
But here is how mysoginistic the film is, how do the men get the women to fall in love with them? By kidnapping them and forcing them to live on their snowed-in mountain farm for the winter!
An incredulous story, saved by the use of cinemascope as it looks stunning but probably only used in order to get all 14 main characters on screen at the same time!

78 - Rosemary's Baby - 3 stars
One woman's descent into insanity as her perfect life; lovely home, loving husband, dodgy haircut ("it's Vidal Sassoon"), slowly crumbles as she becomes convinced that there is a conspiracy against her and her unborn child.
Paranoia is a theme that runs through many of Polanski's films (I don't know why he would think that people were out to get him?), and his anti-"Love Thy Neighbour" sentiment is present here before becoming the central theme of the fantastic The Tenant.
The neighbours in question are the wonderful Castevets, played by ??? and the Oscar-winning Ruth Gordon. Imagine your interfering grandparents turned out to be Satan worshippers, that's the Castevets.
Polanski wisely keeps most of his cards to his chest, keeping the audience wondering if what Rosemary believes is really true or all in her head.

Days remaining - 281 Films remaining - 374

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