Solyaris, The Rules of the Game and Miss Julie

It is reading week for the University of Lethbridge Students and during this reading week I managed to contract a deadly flu. It not only has left me with a constant need to blow my nose and cough but it has also left me with a constant state of pain in the bones and the head. Awful. But in order not to drive myself insane I’ve managed to catch up on some movie watching.

This week I’ve managed to fully watch three Foreign, I’m sure critically acclaimed, films such as: “Solyaris”, “the Rules of the Game” and “Miss Julie”. I wish I could say I finished watching “Ikiru” but it was so depressing that I had to stop it.

This tells you nothing of the movie. It just introduces the viewer to Solaristics, some weird new science involving outer space and the ocean.

Chris, the main character must go up to investigate how Solyaris is holding up. There has been a death on the ship. Once he gets there, WEIRD THINGS HAPPEN; like his dead wife appears to him and she isn’t an illusion from head trauma, she’s really there. I’m not going to spoil anything for you -so I’m actually not going to review it. Who cares what I think about the movie? Just if you like science fiction, creepy scenes, the Russian language or space in general you should watch this film.

The Rules of the Game:
Ever watch Gosford Park? You know that really boring Altman movie about the ruling class in England. Gosford park documents a hunt extravaganza that seems to be traditional to the bourgeoisie of Europe. The Rules of the Game is something like Gosford park except not boring. It is a comedy that follows the plot of Gosford park, essentially, except the characters are all absurd and wonderful. Oh, did I mention French? Also, the Rules of the Game came first before the Altman crap. So Atlman follows the plot of the Rules of the Game. I love Robert de la Chesnaye played by Marcel Dalio. Jean Renoir – the director – also stars in this film as Octave. I love it when directors casts themselves in their own films.

Miss Julie:
Yawn. I’m sorry but the story of a woman who gets seduced by her butler is really not as riveting as it used to be. I can acknowledge its importance within the development of the woman’s free image (what lo! What does that mean?). Alright, maybe we aren’t free to be the vixens we crave to be…umm. Well, it made a move towards seeing women as other than child bearing machines. Miss Julie, the character just annoyed the crap out of me. Spoiled woman who didn’t play by the rules and got it in the end. Actually, I take that last statement about how this movie aided in some way to liberate the image of a woman. It doesn’t. The protagonist suffers from her sins and we are left feeling sorry for her father. Anyways. I’m not really going to spoil more of the film just in case you still want to watch it and form your own ideas on it. No trailer available on youtube, sadly!

All of these movies can be found at the Lethbridge Public Library. Which means that if you are not from Lethbridge they could be found at your local public library. If you are in Alberta you can get a TAL card and see if you can rent audiovisuals from your local University or Post-education institution Library, they should have all of these films as well.


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