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Best Films – 1994

Ramon Novarro biography Beyond Paradise

Trois couleurs: Rouge Three Colors: RedOne of the masterworks of world cinema, Trois couleurs: Rouge / Three Colors: Red is the final segment of Krzysztof Kieslowski’s Trois couleurs trilogy – the other two being Bleu / Blue (1993) and Blanc / White (1994). Each film is supposed to represent (quite loosely) the three colors of the French flag: liberty, equality, and fraternity.

But regardless of what director-scenarist Kieslowski and cowriter Krzysztof Piesiewicz may have had to say about the “fraternity” symbolisms in Rouge, the film is actually a profound, existential love story. Veteran Jean-Louis Trintignant (Z, Il Conformista / The Conformist) plays an embittered retired judge who recovers his long-lost humanity through his platonic relationship with a young woman (a lovely Irène Jacob) in romantic difficulties.

Decades earlier, the judge’s jealousy and vindictiveness – or was it a glitch in the cosmic machinations of Fate? – had prevented him from achieving fulfillment in life. Back in the present, a parallel story has a young man (Jean-Pierre Lorit) eerily following on the judge’s footsteps. As the barriers between past and present inexorably melt into one another, the forces of destiny will use all their might to get the job done right this time around.

Beautifully shot by Piotr Sobocinski and scored by Zbigniew Preisner, Rouge is much more than your average movie romance. Krzysztof Kieslowski’s final film (the director died in 1996) is a sublimely magical, haunting – and more than a tad disturbing – meditation on fate, time, good, evil, love, redemption, and the human need for soulful communion.

Trois couleurs: Rouge / Three Colors: Red
Bullets Over Broadway
Huozhe / To Live
Little Women
Muriel’s Wedding
Quiz Show
Sister, My Sister
Utomlyonnye solntsem / Burnt by the Sun

Krzysztof Kieslowski (Trois couleurs: Rouge / Three Colors: Red)
Woody Allen (Bullets Over Broadway)
Gianni Amelio (Lamerica)
Gillian Armstrong (Little Women)
P.J. Hogan (Muriel’s Wedding)
Nancy Meckler (Sister, My Sister)
Nikita Mikhalkov (Utomlyonnye solntsem / Burnt by the Sun)
Robert Redford (Quiz Show)
Zhao Xiaowen (Ermo)
Zhang Yimou (Huozhe / To Live)

Ralph Fiennes (Quiz Show)
Johnny Depp (Ed Wood)
Albert Finney (A Man of No Importance)
Tom Hanks (Forrest Gump)
Enrico LoVerso (Lamerica)
Oleg Menchikov (Utomlyonnye solntsem / Burnt by the Sun)
Rob Morrow (Quiz Show)
Linus Roache (Priest)
Massimo Troisi (Il Postino / The Postman)
Ge You (Huozhe / To Live)

Toni Collette (Muriel’s Wedding)
Alia (Ermo)
Carole Bouquet (Grosse fatigue / Dead Tired)
Irène Jacob (Trois couleurs: Rouge / Three Colors: Red)
Gong Li (Huozhe / To Live)
Jodhi May (Sister, My Sister)
Karolina Ostrozna (Wrony / The Crows)
Joely Richardson (Sister, My Sister)
Susan Sarandon (The Client)

Martin Landau (Ed Wood)
Christian Bale (Little Women)
Gabriel Byrne (Little Women)
Ossie Davis (The Client)
Samuel L. Jackson (Pulp Fiction)
Sihung Lung (Yin shi nan nu / Eat Drink Man Woman)
Chazz Palminteri (Bullets Over Broadway)
Allan Rich (Quiz Show)
Paul Scofield (Quiz Show)
John Turturro (Quiz Show)

Dianne Wiest (Bullets Over Broadway)
Jeanie Drynan (Muriel’s Wedding)
Ah-Leh Gua (Yin shi nan nu / Eat Drink Man Woman)
Virna Lisi (La Reine Margot / Queen Margot)
Mink Stole (Serial Mom)
Kristin Scott Thomas (Four Weddings and a Funeral)
Uma Thurman (Pulp Fiction)
Sophie Thursfield (Sister, My Sister)
Tracey Ullman (Bullets Over Broadway)
Julie Walters (Sister, My Sister)

Paul Attanasio (Quiz Show)
Woody Allen & Douglas McGrath (Bullets Over Broadway)
Gianni Amelio, Andrea Porporati & Alessandro Sermoneta (Lamerica)
P.J. Hogan (Muriel’s Wedding)
Wendy Kesselman (Sister, My Sister)
Krzysztof Kieslowski & Krzysztof Piesiewicz (Trois couleurs: Rouge / Three Colors: Red)
Nikita Mikhalkov & Roustam Ibraguimbekov (Utomlyonnye solntsem / Burnt by the Sun)
Robin Swicord (Little Women)
Yu Hua & Lu Wei (Huozhe / To Live)
Lang Yun (Ermo)

Piotr Sobocinski (Trois couleurs: Rouge / Three Colors: Red)
Michael Ballhaus (Quiz Show)
Don Burgess (Forrest Gump)
Michael Coulter (Four Wedding and a Funeral)
Carlo DiPalma (Bullets Over Broadway)
Andrew Dunn (The Madness of King George)
Edward Klosinski (Trois couleurs: Blanc / Three Colors: White)
Ashley Rowe (Sister, My Sister)
Yasushi Sasakihara (Rampo / The Mystery of Rampo)
Geoffrey Simpson (Little Women)

Zbigniew Preisner (Trois couleurs: Rouge / Three Colors: Red)
Luis Enrique Bacalov (Il Postino / The Postman)
Mark Isham (Quiz Show)
Zhao Jiping (Huozhe / To Live)
Zhao Jiping (Pao Da Shuang Deng / Red Firecracker, Green Firecracker)
Thomas Newman (Little Women)
Wlodek Pawlik (Wrony / The Crows)
Franco Piersanti (Lamerica)
Akira Senju (Rampo / The Mystery of Rampo)
Stephen Warbeck (Sister, My Sister)

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1 comment

pete howell -

The definition of haunting. I could write a ten page review and still not do it justice. What I can say is that it is the only movie I’ve ever watched then immediatly watched again. It’s intricate, mysterious and truly moving. I can’t say that I’ve ever seen a better film.


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