King Ludwig II of Bavaria is frustrated, having to accept parliament’s will to join Bismarck, rather he his cultured Habsburg friends, in wars. His love-life being as fruitless, he seeks comfort in art. But building fairytale castles and an even grander opera for his musical idol Wagner proves so expensive, his cabinet ends up resorting to formally challenging his mental health, plausible as his beloved brother Otto contracted schizophrenia earlier. Tragedy now lurks in Ludwig’s prison-castle.
The Barretts of Wimpole Street (1934) Sidney Franklin, Norma Shearer, Fredric March, Charles Laughton, Biography, Drama, Romance
In 1845 London, the Barrett family is ruled with an iron fist by its stern widowed patriarch, Edward Moulton-Barrett. His nine grown children are afraid of him more than they love him. One of his rules is that none of his children are allowed to marry, which does not sit well with youngest daughter Henrietta as she loves and wants to marry Captain Surtees Cook. Of the nine, the one exception is his daughter Elizabeth, who abides faithfully to her father’s wishes. Elizabeth does not think too much about the non-marriage rule as she has an unknown chronic illness which has kept her bedridden. She feels her life will not be a long one. With her time, she writes poetry, which she shares by correspondence with another young poet, Robert Browning. Elizabeth’s outlook on her life changes when she meets Mr. Browning for the first time, he who has fallen in love with her without even having met her. She, in return, falls in love with him after their meeting. With Mr. Browning’s love and …
Rööperi / Hellsinki (2009) Aleksi Mäkelä, Samuli Edelmann, Peter Franzén, Kari Hietalahti, Biography, Crime, Drama
The story tells of a young woman admitting to having blackouts, fearing they are getting worse. She is believed to suffer from multiple personalities, as a result of severe abuse at the hands of her mother, whom the psychiatrist, Cornelia B. Wilbur, believes was schizophrenic. The movie Sibyl is based upon author Flora Rheta Schreiberthe’s novel and fictionalized version of the life story of Shirley Ardell Mason, an American psychiatric patient, claimed to have suffered multiple personality disorder. The novel Sibyl, was in its turn based largely on the alleged actual accounts of psychiatric treatment that Shirley Ardell Mason underwent, documented by American psychiatrist Cornelia B. Wilbur. Numerous psychiatrists, both contemporary and more recent, have strongly contested the diagnosis.
Thirty Two Short Films About Glenn Gould (1993) François Girard, Colm Feore, Derek Keurvorst, Katya Ladan, Biography, Drama, Music
As the title suggests, this dramatised documentary about the eccentric Canadian pianist Glenn Gould is broken up into thirty-two short films (mirroring the thirty-two part structure of Bach’s ‘Goldberg Variations’, the recording that Gould made famous), each giving us an insight into some aspect of Gould’s life and career. Out of respect for the music lead actor Colm Feore is never seen playing the piano, merely reacting to Gould’s own recordings, which are extensively featured.
The Five Pennies (1959) Melville Shavelson, Danny Kaye, Barbara Bel Geddes, Louis Armstrong, Biography, Drama, Music
Loring “Red” Nichols is a cornet-playing country boy who goes to New York in the 1920s full of musical ambition and principles. He gets a job playing in Wil Paradise’s band, but quits to pursue his dream of playing Dixieland jazz. He forms the “Five Pennies” which features his wife, Bobbie, as vocalist. At the peak of his fame, Red and Bobbie’s daughter, Dorothy, develops polio. Red quits the music business to move to Los Angeles where the climate is better for Dorothy. As Dorothy becomes a young teen, she learns of her father’s musical past, and he is persuaded to open a small nightclub which is failing until some noted names from his past come to help out.
Now old, ill, poor, and largely forgotten, William Freise-Greene was once very different. As young and handsome William Green he changed his name to include his first wife’s so that it sounded more impressive for the photographic portrait work he was so good at. But he was also an inventor and his search for a way to project moving pictures became an obsession that ultimately changed the life of all those he loved.
Napló apámnak, anyámnak / Diary for My Parents (1990) Márta Mészáros, Zsuzsa Czinkóczi, Jan Nowicki, Mari Töröcsik, Biography, Drama
The story follows a young student who is orphaned as it grows to adulthood, in the shadow of the Hungarian uprising of 1956. Coming from the communist intelligentsia, looks like your friends and family react differently. His lover, a married factory manager, supports the patriots and later attends striking colleagues. Meanwhile, her sister and others express their anger at being forced from their homes during the Revolution and continue expressing hatred of the rebels later. But in the end they realize the damage is for all, real life is not possible after revolt and brutal repression by the Soviets and colleagues.
The Seven Little Foys (1955) Melville Shavelson, Bob Hope, Milly Vitale, George Tobias, Biography, Comedy, Drama
Vaudeville entertainer Eddie Foy, who has vowed to forever keep his act a solo, falls in love with and marries Italian ballerina Madeleine. While they continue to tour the circuit, they begin a family and before long have seven little Foys to clutter the wings. After tragedy threatens to stall Eddie’s career, he comes to realize that his little terrors are worth their weight in gold.