Hell In The Pacific (USA 1968)

indexIgnoring the ridiculously abrupt ending, Hell in the Pacific is excellent in its structure. A great concept–two men are lost together on an island in the Pacific. The Second World War is over, but prejudices remain, as one man is Japanese, one American. They don’t share a language, so there is basically no dialogue. There is only survival. How do you make a feature length film about this without stretching the idea thin, without boring the viewer, without resorting to clichés of makeshift boats and coconut to eat? You don’t. [Read more…]

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Deliverance (1972 United States)

Nature, in the wild, can be violent. How appropriate that the setting should be the American South. Very few places in the U.S. are, or have been, as violent as redneck country. In a story about Darwinian survival of the fittest, the film conveys the idea that humans are part of nature, not separate from it. The magnificent scenery, the sounds of birds, frogs, crickets, and the roar of the river rapids, combined with the absence of civilization, all convey an environmental message–even if the original audience and critics did not focus on it. [Read more…]

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