There’s no arguing against a statement that Audrey Hepburn was one of the most gorgeous women ever to have graced the silver screen during Hollywood’s Golden Age, but to talk about the film that put her in the spotlight is yet another story. William Wyler’s Roman Holiday has a story that may have been imitated by countless other romantic comedies in the future but all these years it has not only remained so funny – it has still remained every bit as fresh as it did on its release date. But with Roman Holiday, every moment that it spends with our lead characters also happens to make oneself feel like they truly are having the time of their life in a city much like Rome, as if the cutesy nature of the story wouldn’t be enough to win oneself over. For every moment that it seeks to lift up one’s own spirits and even feel as bittersweet as these memories can be, they all build up to what truly forms one of the finest romantic comedies ever made.
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“The greatest story of the west ever filmed!” is what the marketing insists you, but as to be expected from the hyperbolic labelling George Stevens’s Shane carries enough in order to prove itself an entertaining ride while it lasts. Although I’ve not yet been blown away by any of Stevens’s films, he was always a filmmaker whose work has consistently remained engaging and Shane continues a long streak for him. On some count this is arguably George Stevens’s most famous film and it’s easy to see why, for it shows a beautiful portrait of the American West as occupied by a highly political environment, together with the iconic closing sequence – but I’ve found still carries another particular tendency with Stevens that has always bothered me, but that’s not to say it makes Shane any less of a great western than it is.
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This may not be a mere review but more a personal diary entry and reflection. I spent an entire night without sleep and I reflect upon my own guilt as I was watching Yasujiro Ozu’s Tokyo Story again, a specific film that only moved me to my core from the first moment in which I laid my eyes on it for I was left to think about what other members of my own family mean to myself. A group of online peers have also provoked me for I kept thinking of nothing but intense guilt over what I’ve done just for their own sake, and the stress it’s brought on my end is unbelievable for what I myself am encountering at a young age, and it’s where I find that my best means of communicating with others comes out from my own love of film. Continue reading →