After spending the weekend enveloped in my home watching films about paleolithic caves with Donald, it struck me how much I love those moments; when films allow me to forget trivialities. It fills me with an optimistic hope and an appreciation for the vast history of human achievement. It has the same affect as coveted novels, the ones that I read so long ago and yet they still continue to shape me. Of course, not every film can have this everlasting effect, but the following have for me:
El Espiritu de la Colmena by Victor Erice
The mood of the film has always resonated with me, in silent moments I can recall Ana Torrent's illuminated face and her meaningful expressions. Various scenes have been imprinted in my head as my favorite images; a close-up of a golden bee's nest and two small girls sleeping on ornate bedframes. It's endlessly beautiful.
Through a Glass Darkly by Ingmar Bergman
I watched this alone many years ago (perhaps Donald had enough of my "Bergman marathon" back then) and was profoundly affected by every word. It's not surprising considering most Bergman films contain language which mirror similarities in my own life. In this case it was startling, and I've not been able to rewatch it since although I still value the impact and treasure it immensely.
The Adventures of Antoine Doinel by Francois Trauffaut
A light hearted and fundamental tale. My sister and I obsessively watched the entire Antoine Doinel collection when I started high school. We camped out on the couch and watched them all in a row, a feat considering this was a pre-netflix era which meant that you had to buy a foreign film to see it! I can still remember the initial joy of seeing each one for the first time. I wish I could go back and do it all over again.
3 Women by Robert Altman
They say never judge a book by its cover (or a dvd box in this case) but then I would have never come upon 3 Women. Some years ago I paced the shelves of a media-store and became enticed by the dark eyes of Shelly Duvall. I stood firm by my choice and went home to find out what it would uncover. It was a perfect fit and the character of Millie Lammoreaux forever influenced me from that moment on. It's the reason why my bedroom has only had mustard yellow tones (as does hers).
Ordet by Carl Dreyer
I have a lot of good memories of randomly finding movies while flipping channels. Well, perhaps not. Most of them have been novelties of course, but on one fateful day I landed on Ordet. It instantly affected me, with its deliberately slow dialogue and haunting subject matter. The last 10 minutes of the film are still the best that I've ever seen, and thank goodness that I was introduced to Carl Dreyer.
Badlands by Terrence Malick
When I saw Badlands for the first time I was in the crosshairs of my own adolescence; naive at times, but always with good intentions. It mirrored the characters of the film and allowed me to be immersed wholeheartedly. It didn't hurt that I love Sissy Spacek in whatever she does and that a sense of nostalgia lingered through each scene.
Vertigo by Alfred Hitchcock
I've seen most Hitchcock films and they've all been influential, although not as much as Vertigo. I first saw it when I was a young tot and my parents made me watch it, of course I didn't understand a thing, and could not appreciate it. Luckily I re-discovered it years later and it became an instant classic. I love James Stewart and San Francisco so it's a big love affair!
There are countless other affecting films but these are my favorites x