Thursday, March 3, 2011
Black Narcissus (1947)
I've decided that now that Oscar season is over and 2011 has officially not yet given me a single movie that I want to see, it's time to catch up on some classics. So, if you have any suggestions, please mention in the comments and I'll almost surely watch what you suggest. "Black Narcissus" is a rather fascinating film that survives mainly because of its gorgeous cinematography. The colors are planned so well it's almost as if the movie is one hour and forty minute long painting, and some shots are just so breathtaking it's unbearable. The fact that the entire thing was filmed on a backlot in London is stunning when you see shots like the nuns ringing the bell on the cliff, or the panoramic looks at the "Himalayas". For the most part the acting is quite fantastic - Deborah Kerr's icy, yet vulnerable performance is absorbing and exhilarating to watch, and Kathleen Byron is a whirlwind in her final scenes. The story is paced somewhat strangely - the climax is fantastic but the lead up to said climax doesn't necessarily make sense. The script could have used more narrative focus though it's not bad enough to detract majorly from the rest of the amazing things happening in this film.