Good, ugly and excellent movies

Normally I skip the movies on planes and instead try to get as much sleep as possible, as it helps me deal with jet lag once I arrive. I broke this rule on my recent trip from Japan to Germany and back, as I spent a total of 35 hours in the air.

On the way to Germany I watched “The Hobbit – an unexpected journey“, which I found well made and entertaining though I felt the target audience was much younger than I am. I still want to see “Lord of the Rings” one day.

During the return flight I watched “Django unchained“, even though I had decided never to watch another Quentin Tarantino movie after his shockingly violent “Pulp Fiction”. Reading reviews of “Inglorious Basterds” had reinforced that decision. On the other hand, the subject of slavery does not often come up in Westerns, a genre I happen to like, so I was curious. I finished watching the movie, but it wasn’t easy. Several times I was close to turning it off. The violence was so extreme and sadistic, it was more like a Western-themed zombie movie. Afterwards I was sorry for having watched this sick garbage. I will never, ever watch another Tarantino movie!

Then the weekend after I got back from Germany I watched “The English Patient” (1996) on DVD. It was the second time I viewed it, as my wife who had not seen it before rented it on DVD after having it recommended to her by a friend. I was as moved by it as I had been the first time. I loved the finely detailed story, the parallel story lines used and the gradual revelation of what had happened. This is one of the 10 best movies I’ve seen so far.

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