Tuesday, October 4, 2022

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Criticism of ‘Belfast’, the new jewel by Kenneth Branagh

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For innocent eyes and fans of movies made with passion and a lot of love.

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Direction: Kenneth Brangh Distribution: Caitriona Balfe, Jamie Dornan, Judi Dench, Ciarán Hinds, Jude Hill, Lewis McAskie, Colin Morgan Original title: Belfast Country: United Kingdom Year: 2021 Release date: 01-28-2022 Gender: Drama Script: Kenneth Brangh Photography: Haris Zambarloukos Synopsis: Belfast, summer 1969. Through the eyes of little Buddy, we witness the struggle of his parents, family and neighbors to survive in a city that begins to suffer the consequences of violence and political tensions.

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The best: everything from Hinds and Dench.

The worst: the hateful comparisons with ‘Roma’ and a few extra spoonfuls of sugar.

Shakespeare exalted Branagh, but at the same time it was his grave. In addition to the damage caused by being labeled as the new Laurence Olivier, something that he ended up believing wholeheartedly, the failure of the wonderful ‘Lost Labors of Love’ left him in dry dock. And when he returned, he had to become a mere craftsman in charge of insubstantial products with a generous budget, but little creativity … until now. ‘Belfast’, his most personal film to date, is redemption for so much mediocrity served up in the form of soulless big productions. Because if this marvel is left over from something, it is from the soul. A film that does not hit you, but caresses you through powerful emotional flashes, pure gasoline for our touched hearts.

Appealing more to ‘Hope and Glory’ than to ‘The 400 Blows’ and without going down to the political arena, Branagh turns to his memories to build this generous coming-of-age narrated through the eyes of his very young alter ego, a voyeur who observes with the innocence typical of his age in a retrospective gaze without too much anger, where romanticism and daydreaming take precedence over realism. And like someone leafing through that old black and white photo album, the viewer discovers those little bits of life of that family that they make their own –those wise grandparents, self-sacrificing parents who, with their flaws, emanate decency–, and that far from make him uncomfortable, they appeal to him without having to resort to that dangerous traveling companion that is nostalgia.

And in those life lessons under the chords of Van The Man’s music, the power and magic of art stand out, literally sweetening and coloring that life in black and white, and serving as a refuge from the imminent storm. Powerful, tender, witty and full of cinematic details –The villain’s last name is Clanton, like the bad guy from OK Corral; those neighbors with illustrious surnames: Ford, Stewart; the reference to Shangri-La–, ‘Belfast’ is touched by the warm glow of everyday life, it brims with life and is living proof that cinema, good cinema such as this hard-to-forget film, is made of the material with which dreams are forged.

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Source: Fotogramas

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