>> Thursday, August 30, 2012

Life is Beautiful
Rated PG-13 for holocaust-related thematic elements.

"I want to watch this movie," my friend says. "It's called Life is Beautiful."
I nod. Sounds good.
"It's Italian."
I pause and then nod again. As long as it's clean, right?
"And it won some academy awards."
I scowl. Because my opinion of people who judge that award can be pretty low.

But despite all my preconceived notions, it was...well...beautiful.
Life is Beautiful (or La Vida e Bella) is one of those movies that can change your life. It's the story of Guido, a Jewish waiter with a magnificent sense of humor. But when he and his young son are taken to a concentration camp, he tells his son that it's an elaborate game, and manages through his sense of humor to protect his son's innocence, as well as his son's life.

The best way to describe this film would be bittersweet. Once I got used to the fast-paced Italian dialogue it was screamingly funny. But also very unpredictable and very tense. Every time Guido did a new scheme I'd just pray that everything would turn out all right.
I have some trouble with most Holocaust movies. Not that they aren't done well--far from it--but somehow or other, it can be too much to handle emotionally. It really happened, and that knowledge can be difficult to bear. But this movie hit home without being graphic. It didn't show anything, and that made it just as shocking, but also much easier to watch.

Days after I was stilling mulling over it. Could have done what Dora did, in order to be with her family? Could I have smiled in the face of death?

Life is Beautiful is very sweet, sad, and thought-provoking movie. I'd definitely recommend seeing this one (although see it with subtitles. It loses a lot when dubbed in English.)

Favorite Line: "You've really got a crush on me."
Verdict: Rent it as soon as possible.
Grey Travel Rating: 4/5
Plot: 4/5
Characters: 5/5
Acting: 4/5
Objectionable Content: Mentions of "making love". A man mentions  the word "brothel", but nothing more is said. Uses of the Lord's name in vain.


Opus T. Penguin August 30, 2012 at 6:29 AM  

My biggest problem with movies like that is the child. Any time the movie has a child in danger or distress I project my child in that situation and it tears me up inside.

Izori August 30, 2012 at 1:45 PM  

'Life is Beautiful' is one of my favorite movies. I watched it for my 9th grade history class. That is such a sweet movie.

Anonymous August 30, 2012 at 4:06 PM  

I cried my heart out at the ending, still do. But at the same time I was so happy that the father was willing to give a story to his son, even to his end, that would live forever in his son's memory. It is such a wonderful movie and I love it.

I Am An Otter

You're an otter, mate! Another good friend of Redwall, you are a natural swimmer and a deadly fighter especially with a long bow or javellin. Camp Willow is your home, just as Redwall is your second home. You have a good heart and a strong sense of loyalty. You absolutely love Shrimp and Hotroot soup, living by the motto "Ain't nothing 'otter for an Otter!".

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