FilmJerk Favorites

A group of unique directors and the essential works that you've got to see.

||| David Lean |||
David Lean

Honored with the American Film Institute Life Achievement Award in 1990, Leanís body of work (ranging from the intimate film to the grandiose epic) demonstrates an obsessive cultivation of craft and a fastidious concern with detail that has become the very definition of quality British cinema.

Adapted from Noel Cowardís one-act play, Lean takes a potentially boring story of middle-age flirtation and tenderly creates one of the most enduring and poignant romance films ever made. Brilliantly underplayed, two happily married strangers meet by chance in a railway station and fall desperately in love, but never physically express the undercurrent of passion that exists between them, even during their final gut wrenching separation Ė if your heart doesnít ache, youíre just not human!

Demonstrating moments of intimacy through gigantic display, Lean sets up the greatness of Pipís expectations with the magnitude of his frightful encounters; one with an escaped convict, whose emerge into the frame reminds us what itís like to be a child in a world of oversized, menacing adults, and another with the meeting of mad Miss Havisham, in all her gothic splendor.

Peter O'Toole made an enigmatic and lasting impression in his debut role as British officer T.E. Lawrence, who helped Arab rebels fight the Turks in WWI, and Omar Sharif has perhaps the greatest cinematic intro of all time as he magically appears through the ghostly waves of the desert heat, achieving Leanís compulsive drive to create the perfectly composed shot. Alec Guinness, Anthony Quinn, Jose Ferrer, and Claude Rains round out this incredibly talented and magnetically charged cast.

Recommended by CarrieSpecht


Potter Oscar Party to Enchant Hollywood

By EdwardHavens

November 18th, 2005

Rumors have begun swirling about a massive "Harry Potter" Oscar party, except that Harry won't be fighting dark wizards at this event: he'll be fighting illiteracy, and his fans will be with him. FilmJerk has been able to confirm, via multiple sources, that this event is in development and slated for the evening of the 2006 Academy Awards.

One source, speaking on the condition of anonymity, describes the event as "beyond huge. There are multiple charities on board, multiple production companies, and we're just barely getting started. [The event's organizers] are obsessive about making this a success, and I'm told the public will be able to attend. [They] are equally hardcore about promoting the literacy side of things. Everyone's going to have a wild time, but there's something serious and positive happening here as well."

The source also confirmed that the choice in scheduling is designed to take advantage of the Oscars. "Everyone's already in town, already dressed up for a night out. What better way to further a literacy cause?" A second source, a member of a third-party company contracted to design the event's theatrics, acknowledged that he'd "never seen anything like it. I'm not supposed to talk about it and I'm obviously biased, but I have worked a few post-Oscar parties in my day. What they're planning is, frankly, insane."

No one is willing to comment on any event specifics, although FilmJerk has learned at least one major band has already committed to performing. Also unknown is Warner Bros. level of involvement with the event. Warner Bros., in addition to being the distributor of the Harry Potter films, is the holder of all significant Harry Potter trademarks in the United States. Time-Warner also runs the largest corporate-sponsored literacy program in the nation, Time To Read.

The event is expected to draw a host of celebrities and personalities, including those associated with the Harry Potter books and films. The event organizers anticipate attendees in the thousands.

Will Ms. Rowling be persuaded to attend as well? We're sure to hear much more about this event as we get closer to the Academy Awards on Sunday, March 5.