Over the years I have watched several films I really liked. This was a case especially when I was in a college, however not necessarily all these films were presented in the film classes I took. Some of them I searched for by myself. I have to admit that I love these films. In a way they defined my life. I enjoy identifying with their characters, thinking of the dramatic structure of the stories and the poetic visual language those stories were presented with.
This passion has started in my early teens when I saw “Bicycle Thieves” by Vittorio De Sica on TV. I was so moved by this story and I realized how powerful cinema can be. I really entered the lives of the characters and their emotional struggle to stay human while confronting the reality of life. Many years later I’ve got to know that this was Italian Neo-Realism, a style of cinema developed after the World War 2 to tell the more truthful stories through film. It’s interesting how the “truth” in cinema has been redefined over and over throughout the years through different styles. But personally, it’s not the style of the film or how it is categorized that is important for me, but rather that it speaks something “true” I can really relate to. When I think of De Sica and other filmmakers from his time I feel that they did not only try to capture the reality but to respond through their art to the human suffering and chaos of the war and post-war time. I remember seeing “Helvetica”, a movie by Gary Hustwit. One point mentioned in the film was that after the war the Swiss designers felt the need to bring some sense, organization, and some beauty to the world that was in the state of disintegration. I think of that when I think of cinema in general. Movies with a kind of humanistic message are the ones that I like the most. Some of them have been labeled as “classics”, though personally it doesn’t really matter for me. It may be more about my particular taste.
I thought that it may be a good exercise for me to rewatch some of them and write what are the aspects of these films that made a particular impression on me. As an artist, a filmmaker, it’s good to think about films, analise them, or simply make some notes of the parts that are memorable. This helps to focus the interest and define the artistic direction.