On Saturday I saw Frida, the movie based on the life of Frida Kahlo, I believe it got some Oscar consideration, and I think it won an award for best costumes. At any rate, it was quite a spectacle with great performances from the leads, Salma Hayek and Alfred Molina. It was also a very visually arresting movie full of bright colors and bold images, some of which were inspired by the art of Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera. The director Julie Taymor (creator the Broadway version of The Lion King) also made another visually interesting film adaptation of Shakespeare's violent Titus Andronicus, called simply, Titus. Frida and Diego lived a fascinating life, they were at the heart of a great Mexican, epic, fictional biography I read last summer, The Years With Laura Diaz by Mexican writer Carlos Fuentes, who also wrote the excellent and more contemporary The Crystal Frontier. I guess the greatest result of this movie would result in viewers revisiting the artistic work of Kahlo. The Bunkamura, which is showing the film, had an exhibition of some of Kahlo?s paintings earlier this summer, but I missed it unfortunately, I'd like to look at her paintings after having some insight into the interesting and tragic life of the artist.
Last night I finally got around to watching Roman Polanski's masterwork, The Pianist. It was an incredibly well made and moving film about the holocaust. I have to admit that I was reluctant to see it since I feel that the holocaust seems a bit overwrought, but I think there is always room for a powerful individual story of survival, especially if it is the result of a well-crafted collaboration of writing, acting, and filming. The recreation of Warsaw was amazing and Adrien Brody gave a very restrained and believable performance, as did the many extras, a remarkable and emotional film. I think it was much more impressive than Schindler's List, if you haven't seen it, put it on your list.