|Global Visions film series continues Monday with "Water"|
The Global Visions film series features award-winning international movies. All films are free, and are held in the Lecture Bowl in the Memorial Union on Tuesday nights at 7p.m., EXCEPT the up-coming film:
"Water," a film by India's exceptional film artist, Deepa Mehta, is winning awards around the globe and will be shown at 7 p.m. Monday in the Lecture Bowl of the Union. It is free and open to the public.
"Your life changes from now on. . . You are a widow from now." And the barely 10-year-old girl looks at her crying father with innocent, detached eyes to ask, "Until when?" With a backdrop of the little girl's old dead husband's pyre burning, this is one of the many instances of the inhumane customs trapped by Deepa Mehta on camera. The movie opens up with a text from Manu's 2,000 year old ancient script on how the life of a widow is supposed to be lived. Fast forward to a small Indian town in 1938, where the story moves to a "widow house" where widows from the age of 10 to 90 live together struggling to make ends meet. Water essentially follows the young girl Chuyia's (beautifully portrayed by child actor Sarala) journey from her losing her old husband to her entering the widow house. You get to see the life of widows through the eyes of little Chuyia.
The next film is "Ma Vie en Rose," from France, Tuesday, Nov. 7. Ludovic is waiting for a miracle. With seven-year-old certainty, he believes he was meant to be a little girl - and that the mistake will soon be corrected. But where he expects the miraculous, Ludo finds only refection, isolation and guilt - as the intense reactions of family, friends, and neighbors strip away every innocent lace and bauble. As suburban prejudices close around them, family loves and loyalties are tested in the ever-escalating dramatic turns of Alin Berliner's critically acclaimed first feature. Winner of the Golden Globe for Best Foreign Language Film and a favorite at festivals around the world, this unique film experience delivers magic of the rarest sort through a story of difference, rejection, and childlike faith in miracles.
"Breakfast on Pluto," from Ireland, is Tuesday, Nov. 21. Set in the 1970s, "Breakfast on Pluto" follows the exploits of Patrick Braden (Cillian Murphy), an endearing, but deceptively tough young man. Abandoned as a baby in his small Irish hometown and aware from a very early age that he is different, Patrick survives this harsh environment with the aid of his wit and charm, plus a sweet refusal to let anyone and anything change who he is. As Patrick's penchant for dressing up and his sewing skills develop, he begins his transformation into the beautiful and androgynous Kitten. With a burning desire to find his mother, he moves to London where an hilarious, memorable and emotional series of misadventures sees Kitten finally finding the love and happiness he so craves and deserves. Neil Jordan weaves a wonderfully surreal and magical tale to bring us this funny, moving and poignant rites of passage account of a young man enduring the trials and tribulations he faces with a smile and unwavering faith in the inherent goodness in us all.
"Chinhyang," from Korea, will play Tuesday, Dec. 5. The plot of "Chunhyang" is a story about two lovers separated by class, such as the doomed romance between a penniless writer and a showgirl seen in "Moulin Rouge", or even the pairing of a corporate shark and a hooker-with-a-heart-of-gold seen in "Pretty Woman." In this case, the forbidden love is between Mongyoung Lee (Cho Seung-woo), a governor's son, and Chunghyang Sung (Lee Hyo-jeong), the beautiful daughter of a courtesan, who marry in secret after a brief courtship. Unfortunately, Mongyoung cannot tell his father about his class-defying union, as it will not only bring shame to the family name, but also potentially jeopardize a future appointment to the Royal Court. Their married bliss is short-lived, as the governor is transferred to Soeul and Mongyoung is obligated to follow, leaving Chunhyang behind only with a promise to return some day. Unfortunately, years go by, and a new governor (Lee Jung-hun) takes office in the region, who wishes to have Chunghyang as his mistress. Determined to remain faithful to her absent husband, Chunghyang refuses the governor's demands. Enraged by such insolence, the new governor has Chunghyang beaten, thrown in prison, and sentenced to death. "Chunhyang" has the distinction of being the first Korean film to ever compete in the Cannes Film Festival, and is a much deserved global debut for Im Kwon-taek, who is considered to be Korea's leading director, with a filmography that stretches four decades and numerous awards to his name. True, it may be rather unconventional in execution, but the film's sheer beauty and familiar yet heartfelt story make "Chunhyang" a rare and uplifting moviegoing experience, whether you are familiar with pansori or not.
-- Marcia Mikulak, Assistant Professor, Anthropology, email@example.com, 701-777-4718