If you’d like to discover a film anew, treat yourself to a gem.
See a classic, an offbeat treat or an on-beat documentary.
Because each film reveals aspects of ourselves and deepens our knowledge of what it is to be human.
Days of Heaven, 1978
Written and directed by Terence Malick (also director of Tree of Life), Starring Richard Gere (Oscar Award Winning Cinematography)
If you’re ready to be swept away to Oz in slow motion
See Days of Heaven ask, “Rich man, poor man, woman on the run, does it matter?”
Because mythic twists of fate and time blow strong through every life.
(The girl who inherits America at the end – a beautiful thing, indeed.)
Last American Hero, 1973
Directed by Lamont Johnson, Written by Tom Wolf, Starring Jeff Bridges
If you’re a true believer in a hero who stands tall, infuses a name with fame
See Last American Hero race ahead of bootlegging, choose a winner’s circle over jail
Because individual’s dignify success, not the corporate money behind them.
(And Jim Croce’s “I’ve Got A Name” is a wonderful song for us all.)
The Earrings of Madame de…, 1953
Directed by Max Ophuls, Written by Louise de Vilmorin (novel), Marcel Achard (screenplay), Starring Charles Boyer, Danielle Darrieux and Vittoria De Sica
If you’re hunting for a fine film known best by cognoscenti, rarely viewed
See Earrings of Madame de…showcase master class acting, directing and filmmaking
Because audience emotion is not spared in Ophuls’ close game of cat and mouse.
Written and Directed by Robert Bresson, Starring Martin LaSalle
If you’re intrigued by a man’s shadow, how he steps on himself as he walks
See Pickpocket finger a mark at close range; you’re only a few feet away
Because intimate violation penetrates the soul, revealing the dark hold of perversity.
(Bresson at his best if you’re a fan; he’s a master at evoking projections.)
Directed by F.W. Murnau, Starring Janet Gaynor at 25!
If you’re spellbound by cinematography, this is IT for you.
See Sunrise capture a silent drama of the power of love en vivo
Because gestures of grim and grand speak louder than words across the ages.
(Subtitled A Song of Two Humans, it’s a universal story of love, temptation and redemption.)
The Mystery of Picasso , 1956
Directed by Henri-Georges Clouzot, Starring Pablo Picasso
If you’re an artist or art lover, secrets of creativity no doubt amaze you
See The Mystery of Picasso immerse you in the magic of a genius at work
Because to know is to go — on the risky journey of creative expression.
(Picasso under Clouzot’s strict direction is a winning combo of spirit and discipline.)
The River, 1951
Directed by Jean Renoir, Written by Rumer Godden (novel),
Starring Patricia Walters, Nora Swinburne & Esmond Knight
If you’re ready for a tasty visual treat of early 20th century India in technicolor
See The River lift everyday family events onto a spiritual level of meaning
Because love of life relies on the mystery of digesting the flow, the way things are
(Extra feature interviews with Renoir and Scorcese are well worth the time.)
The Conformist, 1971
Directed by Bernardo Bertolucci, Starring Jean-Louis Trintignant.
If you’re a sleuth and like to look beneath the surface of the obvious for the truth
See The Conformist cover-up the wrong lie, blind to his true nature, dying before he’s dead.
Because outer crime pales by comparison to soul murder.
(Breakthrough, beautiful film making in the hands of a master, watch the interviews first.)
Written by Dr. Jane Alexander Stewart
Newtopia staff writer Jane Alexander Stewart, Ph.D. is a clinical psychologist in Los Angeles who writes essays about mythic themes in film, creates “Myth in Film; Myth in Your Life” seminars for self-exploration and travels a lot. Her film reviews have been published in the San Francisco C.G. Jung Library Journal, Spring: A Journal of Archetype and Culture and Los Angeles Journal of Psychological Perspectives. Jane’s popular essay on “The Feminine Hero in The Silence of the Lambs” appears in the anthology, The Soul of Popular Culture, and in The Presence of the Feminine in Film as one of its authors. She’s also presented myth in film programs at Los Angeles County Museum, University of Alabama and C.G. Jung Institute in Zurich. A collection of her reviews and other writing can be found at www.CinemaShrink.com.