my name is Maja and I'm from Germany. On Wednesday, I' ll have to present the movie "The man who cried" (in case anyone of you know it, if not, go and watch it ^^).
Therefore, I prepared something and I know it's quiet long, but I would be very thankful if someone would go trough it until tomorrow or the day after tomorrow and correct my mistakes.
So here it is:
For my presentation, I chose “The Man Who Cried”, a movie which was produced in 2001 by director Sally Potter. A book of the same title sampled for it and the story is, at heart, the same.
Potter's tale, a tale about survival, begins in Russia, 1927, exploring the childhood years of little Fegele, a jewish girl who is separated from her beloved father when he ventures from home to begin a new life in America and then hopes to send for his family. Soon after he has left, violence engulfs the village. Fegele is sent away with some fleeing villagers who hope to get to America, but she ends up on a boat to England and so loses everyone and everything she loves.
I’ll show you the scene when Fegele is sent away, and then gets a new name in England.
In England, Fegele is re-named Suzie, sent to a Christian foster home and to a school where she is forbidden to speak Yiddish. The little girl is driven into silence but nevertheless develops a singing voice.
Ten years pass by and then she leaves for Paris, where she becomes a chorus girl and is befriended by (stimmt das so? Was heißt das übersetzt genau?) glamorous Russian dancer named Lola (played by Kate Blanchett), who guides her through the magical city of lights.
Now, I’ll show you the scene where Suzie auditions in order to go to America.
In Paris, Suzie starts to save money, hoping to earn enough to pay for her passage to America and find her father. Together, Lola and Suzie find jobs in the new opera company of impresario Felix Perlman. Their lives become inextricably entwined with the fate of an arrogant and willfull Italian opera singer named Dante Dominio (played by John Turturro), who Lola obviously is interested in, and the gypsy horse trader Cesar (played by Johnny Depp).
I show you another scene, so you can see what these jobs look like. The man who is singing is Dante Dominio and the man on the horse is Cesar
After that, you’ll see a scene that is very informative of Dante’s attitude towards other cultures, which clearly differs to Suzie’s way of thinking, and displays how Suzie and Cesar warm up to each other.
Suzie finds the joy of love as she is captivated by the mysterios ways of the enigmatic gypsy Cesar, but Dante does not want to accept that. He, again and again, discriminates against Cesar and other gypsys and Suzie often stands up for them, for she has learned what it is like to be an outcast and be insulted in her childhood.
Life is getting harder and harder when Germany under the command of Hitler invades Poland and so provokes a war. And one day, the Nazis march in in Paris as well.
Lola first was the only one who knew about Suzie being a jule. During a talk with Dante she let that information slip, not thinking that Dante would betray her friend. Lola tries to get Suzie to leave Paris with her as fast as possible, not only because Dante hast lost his interests in her but because she is worried about Suzie, now that the Nazis know that she is a jule.
Suzie agrees to leave France with her and finally go to America, although her lover Cesar will stay and fight for his family.
On the passage to America the ship, on which Suzie and Lola travel, is attacked by a bomber and goes under, pulling Lola and many other passangers into death. Suzie can be rescued, continues her journey and looks for her father in America.
And now, before I show you the last scene, I’d like to know what you think will happen. Will Suzie find her father or has he been killed like so many other Jules?
Why did I chose this movie?
THE MAN WHO CRIED is a very emotional profound production, which elicits much intuition for interpersonal relationships. It does not involve cheap and shallow action scences, which I’m thankful for. I would describe Sally Potter’s work as a deciption of a young woman’s life, which is marked of (richtige Präposition?) loss, sadness, sensual and true love as well as constant respect for fellow men.
As far as the characters in THE MAN WHO CRIED are concerned, I think they are very well thought out and depicted. Cate Blanchett and Johnny Depp perform wonderful in this movie, both bribe with their beauty and intelligence.
It is especially admirable that the director would decide to give life to a 'mute heroine,' Suzie, who says almost nothing throughout the whole movie, but expresses herself surprisingly well in spite of this. She conveys with incredible force that sense of discomfort so many are left with for life when they are put into a hostile environment during their childhood. Cristina Ricci seems embarrassed at times, and rightly so, for in this movie she plays the part of an outcast, and that's the way an outcast often feels, unfortunately.
But she has also learned to go an, to look straight ahead and not ever give in, to live and not let herself die.
Another striking quality of the film is definately the music. I really love the soundtrack.
The director once said that 'The intention was to find a way of telling the story where music was carrying emotional and spiritual truth with as much force as the images and the characters.'
A set of powerful, cultural and evocative pieces of music serve to remind the characters of who they are and where they come from. In my opinion, the director succeeds in this difficult task brilliantly, and I never thought that I would actually like these for opera pieces in this movie.
The idea which comes through is that when people are left without their cultural identity and/or dignity, music can save them from forgetting their “selves”, save them from silence and not being able to communicate.
It is clear that The Man WHO CRIED was never a blockbuster, but no one ever expected it to be, not even director Sally Potter. If anything, it is a movie for the thinking, tender-hearted filmgoer, who wants to see behind the curtain and I can only recommend everyone to watch it, because the whole movie is just beautiful in so many ways.
And now, before I read the few questions I prepared, I’d like to give you a quotation of Sally Potter which shows very clearly what her idea was when making this movie.
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