I have been watching free international movies at the Shangri-la Movie world since 2007. Since then, I don;t want to miss any chance of enjoying beautiful foreign movies. I am so happy that Shangri-la has to offer something like this. It's really a wonderful experience. In fact, my 2 lovely daughters are going now with me. A lovely lady from my office who happens to be a good friend of mine is a good recruit. I hope that I will encourage more friends to enjoy what I have been enjoying.
Here are some excerpts from the movies:
The German comedy drama film “Goethe! (Young Goethe in Love)" formally opens Cine Europa 14 with an invitational screening on Sept. 8 at the Shang Cineplex 2.
Directed by Philipp Stolz and starring Alexander Fehling, Miriam Stein, and Moritz Bleibtreu, Goethe! focuses on the German poet's youthful love affair with the fiercely independent Lotte Buff. The relationship deeply affected young Johann’s life and greatly influenced his masterpiece, “The Sorrows of Young Werther."
All other films will be screened for free on a first-come, first served basis at 12 noon, 3:00 p.m., 6:00 p.m. and 9:00 p.m. during the ten-day festival.
The ever deepening global economic woes are tackled in two of the films. Austria’s “Little Robbers" shows attempts by two very young children to rob a bank which threw their family out of their brand new flat after their father was laid off from work.
Belgium’s “Long Weekend" is a story of how two former workers plot to kidnap their manager to exact damages for all the company employees who lost their jobs when he closed shop, but the manager’s mistress complicates the transaction.
Bulgaria’s “Letter to America" takes viewers to busy Manhattan and the isolated Bulgarian mountains as the main protagonist Ivan, denied a US visa, searches for the mythical cure to save the life of his best friend who is lying in coma in a New York hospital.
Czech Republic’s “Grapes" flaunts the fabled Moravian vineyard as the background for the story of friendship between two men. One of them inherited his grandfather’s vineyard but knows very little about wine-making, while the other is a small-time crook with strong womanizing tendencies.
Denmark’s “The Escape" tells the story of Danish journalist Rikke Lyngvig, who was taken hostage in Afghanistan by a terrorist group but was freed after one of her captors, Nazir, took pity on her. Her escape propelled the journalist to stardom.
In Finland’s “Princess," a cabaret dancer was diagnosed as manic depressive with symptoms of schizophrenia. She was placed in a facility where she started her reign as a “princess". The dancer, while holding court in the hospital, inadvertently helps other patients and brings joy and healing.
France’s “An Ordinary Execution" portrays the relationship between the urologist who treats the dictator Stalin, his devious patient, and his wife.
“Little Greek Godfather" from Greece depicts the angst of an 11-year-old Greek who was raised in California but must return to Crete to act as a godfather to the child of a local politician and to prove to his father that he is a worthy heir.
Italy’s “The Lark Farm" describes the bloody political realities in Armenia as brothers Aram, who lives in Turkey, and Assadour, based in Venice, agree to hold a reunion in their hometown. Political violence and massacres hamper frantic preparations for the brother, who have not seen each other for a long time.
Based on true stories, The Netherlands’ “The Silent Army" recounts the plight of child soldiers. The story revolves around the fictional 11-year-old Abu who was kidnapped by rebels and forced to fight in gun battles, but is eventually rescued by the friend of his dead father.
Romania’s “Exchange" relates a factory worker’s bid to migrate to Australia after he lost his job. After selling all his properties, Emil converts his local money to dollars with the assistance of a dealer who cons him.
Slovakia’s “Mosquito Tango" looks at human emotions that are often taken for granted. The psychological film, told through the eyes of two immigrants who wish to return to their country, embodies the passion and tension in everyday life.
Spain has two films this year. “Intacto" is a mystery narrative of four lives interlocked by fate and how they outdo each other in a game where only one survives. Meanwhile, “Mataharis" is a comedy tackling the professional lives of private detectives as they uncover the secrets of their clients, even as they themselves are clueless in confronting their own secrets.
In Sweden’s “Mammoth," the quiet lives of a New York couple are shaken after the husband goes on a business trip to Thailand.
Switzerland’s “How About Love" tells the dilemma of a Swiss surgeon who visits a colleague working as an administrator of a refugee camp near the Burmese border. Doctor Fritz is totally taken by his new experience, as his life and family in Switzerland become secondary.
In the United Kingdom’s “Never Let Me Go," three childhood friends who grew up in a boarding school grapple with their affection for one another as they prepare to move on to the next stage of their lives.
From Metro Manila, Cine Europa 14 moves to Cagayan de Oro’s Liceo de Cagayan University from Sept. 23 to Sept. 25 and then to Cebu’s Ayala Center Onstage from Sept. 30 to Oct. 2. -
Enjoy the movies!:)