Question of the Week: What’s your favorite contemporary black & white films?

This week’s question is inspired by Sin City: A Dame to Kill For screening Tuesday night. Boy it’s been ages, almost a decade to be exact, since the first film was released.

SinCityDameToKillFor

To be honest with you, I don’t remember much about the story but the visual certainly is striking. The graphic novel came to live onto the screen, the term ‘graphic’ here has double meaning as the violence truly was quite explicit. Yet the stylish way it was filmed somehow made it somewhat more palatable if you will, enhancing that fantasy element to the noir story. So I kind of expect more of a visual feast with this sequel and not much else, but who knows it might surprise me.

So it got me thinking about other contemporary black/white films released in the past decade. Naturally the first thing that came to mind is Schindler’s List, but that was over twenty years ago. If we’re looking at just in 2000s decade alone, there are nearly 250 films in either partial or entirely done in black & white (per Wiki). Here are a some of beautifully-shot B&W films I’ve seen just in the past 10 years:

Memento
Memento (2001)
AngelA
Angel-A (2005)
SinCity
Sin City (2005)
TheArtist
The Artist (2005)
CaesarMustDie
Caesar Must Die (2012)
Nebraska
Nebraska (2013)

There are some recently-released ones I still want to see like Control, Persepolis, Blancanieves, Much Ado About Nothing, Frances Ha, Ida, etc. Hopefully I’ll get to those soon.


So what’s YOUR favorite modern Black & White films you saw recently?

The Flix List: Cure for the Common Flix

I don’t know about you but when I’m at Blockbuster, I often agonize way too long trying to decide what movie to rent. I actually haven’t rented anything for months so hopefully the next time I go there’ll be so many flix to choose from it’ll be a breeze. I know what you’re thinking, what, a flix blogger doesn’t watch a flix daily? Or worse yet, [gasp!] doesn’t have a Netflix account? Yes, yes, I’m aware of that, but the fact of the matter is, I actually read/research about flix a lot more than watching them. I find them not only insightful, but ‘therapeutic’ as well.

Of course there’s nothing like watching something that transcend beyond entertainment – when something touches your heart so much you can’t stop crying, or make you want to go learn a new language or simply be grateful to God you have the sense of sight to behold what you’ve just seen. That’s what inspired me to start this post that’d hopefully serve as an exchange between you the reader and me the blogger, and everyone else who happen to come across this post.

These five flix aren’t exactly masterpieces or even ‘great’ flix necessarily, but what makes each of them worth watching is that they’re daringly different and definitely marched to a different drummer from the Hollywood mainstream.

1. The Fall – Set in the 1920s, an injured stuntman tells a fellow patient, a little girl with a broken arm, a fantastical story about 5 mythical heroes. Visually stunning, albeit rather weird & surreal, almost every shot is like a work of art. The little girl is absolutely adorable you want to reach to your screen to pinch her cheek and Lee Pace (the now canceled Pushing Daisies) is a promising new leading man. I’ll definitely keep an eye on him in future flix.

2. Bella – An unconventional love story based on true events about how one day in New York City three people’s lives are changed forever. Starring a Mexican heartthrob Eduaro Verastequi in a personal project that reflect his new direction in life. This love story is not about romance, but it certainly came from the heart.

3. Water – A moving flix that exposes the unfair fate of a group of widows forced to live in poverty in a small town in India. It focuses on a beautiful young widow who’s trying to escape the social restriction and her heart-wrenching relationship with a man of a higher caste.

4. Paris Je T’aime – A unique film I don’t come across very often. Twenty filmmakers tell their version of love in the City of Love. Each story is distinct yet subtly interwoven with one another. Sometimes poignant, often peculiar, but overall an enchanting flix with great ensemble cast.

5. Angel-A – Thanks to my friend Scott who introduced me to this strange but fascinating flix. Set entirely in black & white, this French flix tells the story of a tall & striking yet mysterious woman who’s seemingly predestined to help an ex-con get his act together. Gorgeous scenery of Paris throughout is a feast of the eyes. The film poster is pretty eye-catching as well.

So what’s on your list of unconventional, even downright bizarre movies you love?