Tag Archives: 1990s

Meghe Dhaka Tara / The Cloud-Caped Star (1990) Ritwik Ghatak, Supriya Choudhury, Anil Chatterjee, Gyanesh Mukherjee, Drama, Musical

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“Meghe Dhaka Tara” tells the tragic story of the beautiful daughter of a middle-class refugee family from East Pakistan, living in the outskirts of Calcutta under modest circumstances. Neeta sacrifices everything for her family, including her personal happiness, her money, and her health, while her achievements are hardly ever recognized by the people around her.

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Sib / The Apple (1998) Samira Makhmalbaf, Massoumeh Naderi, Zahra Naderi, Ghorban Ali Naderi, Drama

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This unusual Iranian documentary/drama is based on the true story of a poor and religious 65-year-old father who kept his two 12-year-old daughters locked in their small house from the day that they were born. Their blind mother agreed with the arrangement since she was unable to supervise them in any other way. Thanks to the concern of neighbors over the plight of Massoumeh and Zahra, a social worker looked into the matter and found the girls unable to talk or walk properly. They were given the first baths in their lives and then returned to their home. The father, believing that he has been publicly shamed by his neighbors, promises not to keep them imprisoned anymore.

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Unhook the Stars / Décroche les étoiles (1996) Nick Cassavetes, Gena Rowlands, Marisa Tomei, Gérard Depardieu, Drama, Romance

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Mildred is a widow who discovers a whole new world when her grown children move away. Monica, Mildred’s troubled next-door neighbor, leaves her young son J.J. with Mildred while she works a split shift. A friendship develops between Mildred and the six-year-old that opens her eyes to things she never knew existed. Suddenly, she’s able to explore life, including a shy courtship with Tommy, the truck driver, who assists Mildred’s transition when J.J. no longer needs her.

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Pensavo fosse amore invece era un calesse / I Thought It Was Love (1991) Massimo Troisi, Francesca Neri, Marco Messeri, Comedy, Drama, Romance

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Tommaso is a charming restaurant owner with a roving eye and a similarly roving hand. He just can’t keep away from the ladies, even when he is engaged to a woman he loves very much. When she discovers this, she tries to give him a chance to straighten out, but eventually they call the engagement off. However, the restaurateur simply cannot abide it when his lady-love begins dating another man. Meanwhile, he has been subjected to the somewhat sinister amorous advances of a friend’s younger sister, who poisons him to show her love.

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The Tit and the Moon (1994) Bigas Luna, Biel Duran, Mathilda May, Gérard Darmon, Art-house, Comedy, Romance

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This Spanish/French film presents a loving ode to a woman’s breasts and the three men who love them. The fairy tale is told from the viewpoint of 9-year old Tete, who jealous of his new brother’s access to his mother’s breasts, implores the moon to give him a nurturing breast of his own. French cabaret performers Estrellita, the Queen of Stuttgart, and her jealous husband Maurice, come to town with their surprisingly vulgar act. When Tete sees Estrellita, he knows his wish has been granted. Trailer-park electrician Miquel is also very attracted to Estrellita’s charming chest and begins serenade her. Tete gets to sample her charms after he brings her a frog.

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Underground (1995) Emir Kusturica, Predrag ‘Miki’ Manojlovic, Lazar Ristovski, Mirjana Jokovic, Comedy, Drama, War

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Black marketeers Marko (Miki Manojlovic) and Blacky (Lazar Ristovski) manufacture and sell weapons to the Communist resistance in WWII Belgrade, living the good life along the way. Marko’s surreal duplicity propels him up the ranks of the Communist Party, and he eventually abandons Blacky and steals his girlfriend. After a lengthy stay in a below-ground shelter, the couple reemerges during the Yugoslavian Civil War of the 1990s as Marko realizes that the situation is ripe for exploitation.

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Ancient Futures: Learning from Ladakh (1993) Eric Walton, John Page, Helena Norberg-Hodge, Documentary

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Ladakh, or Little Tibet, is a wildly beautiful desert land high in the western Himalayas. It is a place of few resources and an extreme climate. Yet, for more than a thousand years, it has been home to a thriving culture. Traditions of frugality and co-operation, coupled with an intimate and location-specific knowledge of the environment, enabled the Ladakhis not only to survive, but to prosper. Then came development. Now in Leh, the capital, one finds pollution and divisiveness, inflation and unemployment, intolerance and greed. Centuries of ecological balance and social harmony are under threat from modernisation. The breakdown of Ladakh’s culture and environment forces us to re-examine what we really mean by progress – not only in the developing parts of the world, but in the industrialized world as well. The story of Ladakh teaches us about the root causes of environmental, social and psychological problems, and provides valuable guidelines for our own future.

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Madhouse (1990) Tom Ropelewski, Richard Alexander, Kirstie Alley, John Larroquette, Comedy

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Mark (John Larroquette) and Jessie (Kirstie Alley) get blindsided by an unexpected visit from Mark’s cousin, Fred (John Diehl), and his pregnant wife, Bernice (Jessica Lundy). The family reunion is suddenly extended from five days to six months after an accident renders Bernice bedridden, and Mark and Jessie’s life is slowly turned upside down by a seemingly never-ending stream of house guests, including Jessie’s neurotic sister (Alison La Placa) and her obnoxious son (Bradley Gregg).

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