There were not much blockbuster films on DVDs out this week but I found some high-rating movies that are surely entertaining and inspiring. Here are three movies that were recently released on DVD. Available also in iTunes and Amazon for rental or purchase.
This quiet, low-key documentary describes a most amazing man, Jiro. For more than half-a-hundred years, this octagenarian has devoted himself to one thing: perfecting the art of making sushi. His restaurant might not look like much. You pass through a subway turnstile on the way there, then find just ten seats in the cramped space inside. A lot of the time, staff outnumber customers. You need a reservation a month in advance and expect to pay US$375 minimum, but I assume it goes up from there. In return, you get a Michelin three-star experience – according to Michelin, the third star means it’s worth visiting the country just to experience that one restaurant. – Amazon review.
Rotten Tomatoes rating as of 7/28//2012: 98%, Viewers 93%, My own rating, 95%. The story is very inspiring, concise and well executed. The spoken language in the movie is Japanese but the entire film is very easy so understand. I admire people like Jiro who love their job to death and are very happy to go to work everyday!
2. The Artist
“The Artist” is everything you could possibly want it to be. The story isn’t anything revolutionary or surprising, but it really doesn’t have to be. In case you have somehow not heard of this film yet, it is a silent film that is set in 1927, at the height of the silent movie era. It follows George Valentin, an actor who has had a great deal of success in silent film. The film follows the years where the film industry is moving into “talkies”, where he finds his success is dwindling. He falls hard for Peppy Miller, an actress who is just breaking into the business. This story lasts over the span of maybe ten years.
While up until now, Hollywood has widely forgotten about the silent film era, the style of the film feels kind of experimental to a moviegoer of my generation. The film is a beautiful love letter to this period of film which we all have forgotten about. It makes me think that actors, writers, directors…everybody had to work a lot harder in that generation. It’s hard to write a universally appealing story with no dialogue. – Amazon review.
Rotten Tomatoes rating as of 7/28//2012: 98%, Viewers 89%, My own rating, 90%. For a movie without dialogue it is pretty captivating! In an era where we rely heavily on CGI and 3D to wow us, this movie takes us back to a time when acting was truly an art, men were gentlemen, women were proper, and moviegoing was a theatrical and magical experience.
I was very driven to this film. I was completely captivated by this movie and its subtle nuances. There is something warm and tender in the story and animation that never overshadows the sensitive nature of its characters. It is hard to explain the attraction of this film, but I was completely swept up by the experience. This is such a sensitive film that touches the heart. – Amazon Review
Rotten Tomatoes rating as of 7/28//2012: 94%, Viewers 86%, My own rating, 90%. The visual details are creative and the drawings are beautiful. Entertaining for the whole family.