DESOBEIR – ARISTIDES DE SOUSA MENDES (2009, Joël Santoni, A+++++)
BIG BOY (2010, Monthon Arayangkoon, A+++++)
SELON MATTHIEU (2000, Xavier Beauvois, A+++++)
TWO DREAMS (2007, Anders Jedenfors + Jamie Stone, A+/A)
THE SCROLL MASTER (2010, Arinchavit Chomsri, B-)
DESOBEIR and BIG BOY are not aesthetically interesting. I love DESOBEIR because it inspires the viewers to do good things, to fight against tyranny, and most importantly, the film doesn’t let the viewers forget the truth that you may be severely punished for doing the right things, like Sophie Scholl. Aristides de Sousa Mendes is like Oskar Schindler. He saved many Jewish lives during World War II by disobeying the cruel orders of António de Oliveira Salazar, the Portuguese leader/tyranny. But Sousa Mendes was severely punished by Salazar and he died in poverty, while Salazar claimed after WWII that it was he who saved those Jewish lives. Fortunately, the fascist regime of Portugal was overthrown by the Carnation Revolution in 1974, and the good deeds of Sousa Mendes were rightfully recognized.
I love BIG BOY because the film seems to show that the old must learn from the young and the old must learn to face the truth that they may have lived wrongly for nearly all of their lives. I love some attitudes in this film very much. Before I went to see this film, I expected that the film might emphasize that the young must learn from the old. Fortunately, the film is the opposite of what I expected. I like that the film tells us that “wanting to win” is the cause of misery and unhappiness. The film also shows us that some old people are obsessed with “winning” and try to make young people obsessed with it, too. And when you are obsessed with winning, you are bound for disaster.
BIG BOY also reminds me of some experiences in my own childhood. In BIG BOY, the young guy doesn’t want to compete, but his grandfather accuses him that he “runs away from problems”. I love it very much that the film proves that it’s the grandfather who is wrong, not the young guy. It reminds me of the time when I was 12 years old. I decided not to go to a scout camp at that time, because I don’t like scout camps. A female teacher accused me that I ran away from problems. But I don’t understand why she wanted me to face UNNECESSARY problems. My life is miserable enough already without these unnecessary problems.