Sergi Lopez

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A Perfect Day Review

Very Good

An irreverent comedy in the style of the original M.A.S.H., this wartime romp takes an entertaining look at 24 hours in the life of a group of humanitarian workers in the Balkans in 1995. The film is funny, tense and packed with layers of drama, as Spanish filmmaker Fernando Leon de Aranoa cleverly recreates the setting with striking detail. Since it feels so realistic and is populated with lively characters, the film is thoroughly entertaining, even if it only barely seems to crack the surface.

It opens as aid worker Mambru (Benicio Del Toro) and his local translator Damir (Fedja Stukan) are trying to remove a body from a well so they can clean up the water supply for an isolated village. But their only rope is too frayed to work. Then jaded American colleague B (Tim Robbins) arrives with French rookie Sophie (Melanie Thierry), and as they try to find a rope they are joined by sexy Russian worker Katya (Olga Kurylenko), who has a past with Mambru. But there are constant roadblocks, literally and figuratively, as they try to solve this relatively simple problem. Along the way, they pick up a young orphan (Eldar Residovic) and try to reunite him with his family.

Every situation these people encounter is fraught with chaos, from the absurdities of military regulations to the complexities of local politics to the constant possibility of injury or even death. The filmmaker creates a terrific blackly comical tone that stresses the gallows humour these workers require to survive in an environment where children run around carrying big guns and rules are more important than innocent people's lives. This offbeat tone is engaging, especially with the snappy performances from Del Toro and Robbins as experienced men who know the ropes but insist on playing the game by their own rules. Thierry and Kurylenko are also good in less developed roles as the naive newbie and the steely ex, respectively. And Stukan and Residovic, plus a strong supporting cast, add lots of local colour.

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Sergi Lopez - 10th Rome Film Festival - 'Les Rois du Monde' - Premiere at Auditorium Parco della Musica - Rome, Italy - Monday 19th October 2015

Sergi Lopez
Sergi Lopez
Sergi Lopez
Sergi Lopez
Sergi Lopez
Eric Cantona, Sergi Lopez and Laurent Laffargue

Sergi Lopez - 10th Rome Film Festival - 'Les Rois du Monde' - Photocall at Auditorium Parco della Musica - Rome, Italy - Monday 19th October 2015

Sergi Lopez
Sergi Lopez
Sergi Lopez
Sergi Lopez
Sergi Lopez
Sergi Lopez

Age of Uprising: The Legend of Michael Kohlhaas Trailer


Michael Kohlhaas is a horse dealer living a simple but idyllic life with his beautiful wife, children and their quaint home. He buys some carefully selected horses to take home from a nearby town but on the way he is stopped by a greedy local baron who removes several of his horses apparently unlawfully. When Kohlhaas protests his rights, he discovers that his beloved wife has been ruthlessly killed and so he decides, with his whole world crashing down around him, to embark on a fearless voyage of vengeance. While attempting to gather an army to destroy the monsters who ruined his life, he is confronted by his own religious beliefs which tell him he must forgive his enemies. However, is seems Kohlhaas is willing to face the fiery depths of hell for what those enemies have taken from him.

Continue: Age of Uprising: The Legend of Michael Kohlhaas Trailer

The Monk [Le Moine] Review


Very Good
This 16th century freak-out is ravishingly beautiful to look at, but it's also turgid and relentlessly grim. So what's essentially a dark supernatural thriller will only really appeal to arthouse audiences.

Left on the steps of an isolated Spanish monastery as an infant, Ambrosio (Cassel) has grown up to be a celebrated priest, wowing the population of nearby Madrid with his radical sermons. But he's haunted by visions, as well as a dark secret kept by an oddly powerful woman (Francois). Meanwhile, young Antonia (Japy) is being wooed by the sexy Lorenzo (Noaille), a match her mother (Mouchet) approves but worries about. And no one has a clue that all of their fates are intertwined.

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The Monk Trailer


When he was a baby, Ambrosio was raised by Capucin monks in a Spanish monastery. He becomes a devout monk and, as an adult, his sermons are among the most popular in the country, if not the most popular. However, most of his fellow monks are jealous of Ambrosio's success.

Continue: The Monk Trailer

Potiche Review


Excellent
A sense of barbed optimism infuses this 1977-set French comedy. Not only does it keep a smile on our faces, but it also quietly says some potent things about old prejudices that still linger in Western society.

Life-loving Suzanne (Deneuve) is married to uptight umbrella factory manager Robert (Luchini). Their daughter Joelle (Godreche) is fed up with her controlling husband, determined not to become a trophy wife like her mother, while their son Laurent (Renier) is marrying someone Robert feels is unacceptable. Meanwhile, the union is on strike for better conditions, and when Robert refuses to give his workers anything, Suzanne starts negotiating with a union-friendly local politician Maurice (Debardieu) with whom she has a past.

Soon the children and Robert's secretary (Viard) are in the middle of a farce.

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Potiche Trailer


The Pujol family make umbrellas, in the town of Sainte-Gudule. Robert is the head of the family and he rules his business and household in a very similar fashion. His wife, Suzanne, is a very bright and beautiful woman who's mothered their children and allowed Robert to get on with running the family business. Remember, in 1977, a womans place was in the home and the fairer sex wasn't respected in industry.

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Leaving [Partir] Review


Very Good
This fascinating drama puts us in the mind of a deeply flawed person and makes us sympathise completely with her. This is no mean feat, especially when she does some seriously irrational things. But Scott Thomas is so good in the role that she really makes us care.

In southern France, Suzanne (Scott Thomas) is a wife and mother who, bored with her bourgeois life, decides to go back to work. But when beefy builder Ivan (Lopez) arrives to work on her home office, she starts flirting with him. This eventually turns into a lusty affair, and she decides to leave her husband Samuel (Attal) and teen children (Vidal and Broom). But exchanging financial stability for passion isn't easy; when money runs short Samuel tries to exploit her need for security. And things get very messy indeed.

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Pan's Labyrinth Review


Excellent
Unfolding before viewers' eyes like luxuriantly blooming nightshade, Guillermo del Toro's Pan's Labyrinth is a dark treat that delivers a powerful sting. The nightmare conventions are here in his story of a young girl whose moorings to the real world have been quite effectively cut, everything from mysterious forests and exaggeratedly evil father figures to subterranean monsters and a fairy world existing quite close to our own. But instead of losing himself in the otherworldly, del Toro bases this fantasia in the deadliest of realities.

In 1944, Ofelia (Ivana Baquero), a bookish 12-year-old arrives with her pregnant mother Carmen (Ariadna Gil) at an isolated farmhouse in northern Spain. Here, amidst the dark woods and quietly subservient peasants, her new stepfather Vidal (Sergi López), an army captain, has set up base to harass leftover anti-Fascist rebels from the Civil War. The carefully sadistic Vidal has no squeamishness about the humanity of his anti-insurgent campaign, coolly ordering that all food and medical supplies for the nearby villagers be locked up in the farmhouse and only doled out under guard -- an attempt to starve out the rebels hiding up in the mountains. While the adults (including the excellent Maribel Verdú from Y Tu Mamá También as a woman with rebel ties) are fully enmeshed in their pungent dramas, Ofelia has her own problems of a different sort.

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Dirty Pretty Things Review


Very Good
The title of Stephen Frears' new film Dirty Pretty Things revels in contradiction. The same might be said of the film itself, which is part melodrama, part social critique, and part black comedy all rolled into one delectably grimy treat. It's a thriller that only nominally wants to thrill, and a critique of modern society's disregard for the illegal immigrant class that only sporadically bothers to drum up the audience's indignation over its characters' plight. Willfully unwilling to be pigeonholed, the film embraces its various temperaments with a poise imparted by a director whose steady hand never allows the unconventional material to falter. That the lurching tone of the film coalesces into a satisfyingly original narrative at all speaks to Frears' keen sense of the delicate balance between sentimentality and somberness.

Okwe (newcomer Chiwetel Ejiofor) works as a cab driver by day and a hotel desk clerk by night, regularly chewing addictive plant leaves to keep himself from dozing off. An illegal immigrant and former doctor who's arrived in London to flee political forces who sought his arrest in Nigeria, Okwe now resides on the couch of fellow hotel employee Senay (Amelie's Audrey Tautou), a Turkish maid whose legal immigrant status, in a puzzling twist that's never fully explained, prohibits her from being employed. The two social outcasts keep their friendship hidden from their fellow coworkers, each interested in blending into the environment like a chameleon changing spots to elude predators. In a city that eagerly makes use of immigrant labor, Okwe and Senay are the tattered fringe of society, forced to endure humiliation and unable to fight back for fear that their presence might be detected by the immigration police who constantly scour the city's underbelly. What's not mentioned, however, is that since Okwe is an illegal immigrant, he doesn't have any right being in London, and this near-sighted portrayal of his situation - one can assume that his life in London, no matter how difficult and unpleasant, is better than the life in Nigeria that he fled, although the film glosses over this fact - saps some of our sympathy for him.

Continue reading: Dirty Pretty Things Review

An Affair Of Love Review


Good
My first thought was, "Oh God, another one of those pretentious foreign art house sex films." The opening shot features one of those busy Parisian streets, the locals hustling by in a blur of slow motion. This city tells a thousand stories, my friends, and An Affair of Love is one of them.

As if to add insult to injury, our first actual scenes are of the woman (Nathalie Baye, Day For Night) and man (Sergi López) after the affair, being interviewed by some off-screen voice. It's very When Harry Met Sally..., only with the added layer of being French lovers talking about their passionate encounters. Hoo boy, this is gonna be a long road, isn't it?

Continue reading: An Affair Of Love Review

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Sergi Lopez Movies

A Perfect Day Movie Review

A Perfect Day Movie Review

An irreverent comedy in the style of the original M.A.S.H., this wartime romp takes an...

Age of Uprising: The Legend of Michael Kohlhaas Trailer

Age of Uprising: The Legend of Michael Kohlhaas Trailer

Michael Kohlhaas is a horse dealer living a simple but idyllic life with his beautiful...

The Monk [Le Moine] Movie Review

The Monk [Le Moine] Movie Review

This 16th century freak-out is ravishingly beautiful to look at, but it's also turgid and...

The Monk Trailer

The Monk Trailer

When he was a baby, Ambrosio was raised by Capucin monks in a Spanish monastery....

Potiche Movie Review

Potiche Movie Review

A sense of barbed optimism infuses this 1977-set French comedy. Not only does it keep...

Potiche Trailer

Potiche Trailer

The Pujol family make umbrellas, in the town of Sainte-Gudule. Robert is the head of...

Leaving [Partir] Movie Review

Leaving [Partir] Movie Review

This fascinating drama puts us in the mind of a deeply flawed person and makes...

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Pan's Labyrinth Movie Review

Pan's Labyrinth Movie Review

Unfolding before viewers' eyes like luxuriantly blooming nightshade, Guillermo del Toro's Pan's Labyrinth is a...

Jet Lag Movie Review

Jet Lag Movie Review

Rose (Juliette Binoche) is an accomplished beautician traveling to Acapulco to flee her rage-aholic boyfriend....

Dirty Pretty Things Movie Review

Dirty Pretty Things Movie Review

The title of Stephen Frears' new film Dirty Pretty Things revels in contradiction. The same...

With a Friend Like Harry Movie Review

With a Friend Like Harry Movie Review

Filled with a tantalizing air of suspense, With a Friend Like Harry is an unusual...

An Affair Of Love Movie Review

An Affair Of Love Movie Review

My first thought was, "Oh God, another one of those pretentious foreign art house sex...

An Affair Of Love Movie Review

An Affair Of Love Movie Review

A brief but compelling two-character drama about a purely sexual relationship that unwittingly evolves into...

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