The Passion of Joan of Arc (1928)

The Passion of Joan of Arc (FrenchLa Passion de Jeanne d’Arc) is a silent film produced in France in 1928. It is based on the record of the trial of Joan of Arc. The film was directed by Carl Theodor Dreyer and stars Renée Jeanne Falconetti. It is widely regarded as a landmark of cinema, especially for its production, its direction and Falconetti’s performance, which has been described as being among the finest in cinema history. The original version of the film was lost for decades after a fire destroyed the master negative. Dreyer himself attempted to reassemble a version from outtakes and surviving prints, but he died believing his original cut was lost forever. In one of the most important discoveries in cinema history, a virtually complete print of Dreyer’s original version was found in 1981 in a janitor’s closet of an Oslo mental institution.

The film summarizes the time that Joan of Arc was a captive of the English. It depicts her trial, imprisonment, torture, and execution.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Passion_of_Joan_of_Arc

IMDB Ratings: 8.3/10 , A chronicle of the trial of Jeanne d’Arc on charges of heresy, and the efforts of her ecclesiastical jurists to force Jeanne to recant her claims of holy visions. http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0019254/

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It’s a Wonderful Life: Colorized Version (1946)

It’s a Wonderful Life is a 1946 American Christmas drama film produced and directed by Frank Capra and based on the short story “The Greatest Gift” written by Philip Van Doren Stern.

The film stars James Stewart as George Bailey, a man whose imminent suicide on Christmas Eve brings about the intervention of hisguardian angelClarence Odbody (Henry Travers). Clarence shows George all the lives he has touched and the contributions he has made to his community.

Despite initially being considered a box office flop due to high production costs and stiff competition at the time of its release, the film has come to be regarded as a classic and a staple of Christmas television around the world. Theatrically, the film’s break-even point was actually $6.3 million, approximately twice the production cost, a figure it never came close to achieving in its initial release. An appraisal in 2006 reported: “Although it was not the complete box-office failure that today everyone believes … it was initially a major disappointment and confirmed, at least to the studios, that Capra was no longer capable of turning out the populist features that made his films the must-see, money-making events they once were.”

It’s a Wonderful Life was nominated for five Oscars without winning any, although the film has since been recognized by the American Film Institute as one of the 100 best American films ever made, and placed number one on their list of the most inspirational American films of all time. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/It%27s_a_Wonderful_Life

IMDB Ratings: 8.7/10, An angel helps a compassionate but despairingly frustrated businessman by showing what life would have been like if he never existed. http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0038650/

Cleopatra (1963)

Cleopatra is a 1963 British-American-Swiss epic drama film directed by Joseph L. Mankiewicz. The screenplay was adapted by Sidney BuchmanBen HechtRanald MacDougall, and Mankiewicz from a book by Carlo Maria Franzero. The film starred Elizabeth Taylor,Richard BurtonRex HarrisonRoddy McDowall, and Martin Landau. The music score was by Alex North. It was photographed in 70 mmTodd-AO by Leon Shamroy and an uncredited Jack Hildyard.

Cleopatra chronicles the struggles of Cleopatra VII, the young Queen of Egypt, to resist the imperialist ambitions of Rome.

Despite being a critical failure, it won four Academy Awards. It was the highest grossing film of 1963, earning US $26 million ($57.7 million total), yet made a loss due to its cost of $44 million, the only film ever to be the highest grossing film of the year yet to run at a loss. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cleopatra_(1963_film)

 

IMDB Ratings: 6.8/10, Historical epic. The triumphs and tragedy of the Egyptian queen, Cleopatra. http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0056937/

Rope (1948)

Rope is a 1948 American thriller film based on the play Rope (1929) by Patrick Hamilton and adapted by Hume Cronyn (treatment)[2] andArthur Laurents, directed by Alfred Hitchcock and produced by Sidney Bernstein and Hitchcock as the first of their Transatlantic Picturesproductions. Starring James StewartJohn Dall and Farley Granger, it is the first of Hitchcock’s Technicolor films, and is notable for taking place in real time and being edited so as to appear as a single continuous shot through the use of long takeshttp://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rope_film

IMDB Ratings: 8.1/10, Two young men strangle their “inferior” classmate, hide his body in their apartment, and invite his friends and family to a dinner party as a means to challenge the “perfection” of their crime. http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0040746/

Similar to the movie 4 Rooms by Quentin Terentino.

The Grapes of Wrath (1940)

The Grapes of WrathΤα σταφύλια της οργής (1940)

The Grapes of Wrath is a 1940 drama film directed by John Ford. It was based on John Steinbeck‘s Pulitzer Prize-winning novel of the same namehttp://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Grapes_of_Wrath_(film)

IMDB Ratings: 8.3/10, A poor Midwest family is forced off of their land. They travel to California, suffering the misfortunes of the homeless in the Great Depression. http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0032551/

Rebecca (1940)

Rebecca is a 1940 psychological/dramatic noir thriller directed by Alfred Hitchcock as his first American project.

The film is a gothic tale about the lingering memory of the title character, Maxim de Winter’s dead first wife, which continues to haunt Maxim, his new bride, and Mrs. Danvers. The film won two Academy Awards, including Best Picture out of a total 11 nominations. Olivier, Fontaine and Anderson were all Oscar nominated for their respective roles. Since the introduction of awards for actors in supporting roles, this is the only film named Best Picture that won no other Academy Award for acting, directing or writing.

It was the opening film at the 1st Berlin International Film Festivalhttp://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rebecca_(1940_film)

 

IMDB Ratings: 8.4/10, When a naive young woman marries a rich widower and settles in his gigantic mansion, she finds the memory of the first wife maintaining a grip on her husband and the servants. http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0032976/

Faust (1926)

Faust (German title: Faust – Eine deutsche Volkssage) is a silent film produced in 1926 by UFA, directed by F.W. Murnau, starring Gösta Ekman as Faust, Emil Jannings as Mephisto, Camilla Horn as Gretchen/Marguerite, Frida Richard as her mother, Wilhelm Dieterle as her brother and Yvette Guilbert as Marthe Schwerdtlein, her aunt. Murnau’s film draws on older traditions of the legendary tale of Faust as well as on Goethe’s classic version. UFA wanted Ludwig Berger to direct Faust, as Murnau was engaged with Variety; Murnau pressured the producer and, backed by Jannings, eventually persuaded Erich Pommer to let him direct the movie.

Faust was Murnau’s last German movie, and directly afterward he moved to the US under contract to William Fox to direct Sunrise (1927); when the film premiered in the Ufa-Palast am Zoo of Berlin, Murnau was already shooting in Hollywoodhttp://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Faust_(1926_film)

IMDB Ratings: 8.1/10, God and Satan war over earth; to settle things, they wager on the soul of Faust, a learned and prayerful alchemist…  http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0016847/