Movie-ing Biopics of Heroes

by shalinijena

This post is about watching Biopics – Films based on real life characters. I have chosen this topic to be the first one among my new interest (Click here to know) of blogging because one of the first films that brought me to love cinema above all else were biopics.
Here I have discussed the best films based on real heroes in different domains of life and society. These films are not just stories, they are inspiring tales of the best and the most rare people ever.

Schindler’s List –
Oscar Schindler. History. Germany.
No film on Nazism has ever affected me as much as the Schindler’s list. It is so hard to believe that something like that could even me true, but Steven Spielberg will amaze to an indefinite imagination of reality here. Beautiful is not the word I would like to give, explicit is. One of the best films made on biographies till date. I think everyone who watches and has watched it will agree. Too good to be defined by three mere lines of praises.

Milk –
Harvey Milk. Gay rights. America
You will know from the beginning of what is going to happen at the end and still even till the very last second you will watch the credits roll by. That is the effect which Harvey Milk’s story of his fight for Gay rights has on its audience. It teaches us the very nature of our life, where we belong and what we stand for. But more importantly, how firm are we to what we believe in. It tells us that age is no bar to create change. Injustice does need the young legs to walk the miles, but not 20 something brains all the time. Watch the film for yourself. You will never feel more satisfied.

The Diving Bell and the butterfly –
Jean-Dominique Bauby. Tetraplegic. France
Le scaphandre et le papillon. Deeply moving and camera work plus editing that can transport you inside Elle editor Jean-Dominique Bauby himself, a man who became captive in his own body. With Jean’s entire body paralyzed but his left eye, he writes a book with the help of his speech therapists and transcriber. In this book he dictates the story of his life, not mere experiences, no – but about his life as a lover, father, son, friend and most importantly, a human being. From the beginning till the end, you will see a man whose imagination and memory is not impaired to the least by the physical disabilities. But this movie for me is not about inspiration to do something big. It is to live and let live with a very subtle note of hope throughout the shaky, vibrant shots of the film.

Gandhi –
Mahatma Gandhi. Freedom figher. India
If I call you an Indian and abuse you for not watching this film, then that definitely would be wrong. And so I won’t do that. I will request you, to please, watch this before you watch the Schindler’s List. Not because its better, because its about us. Hater of “The Father” or not, it should be a must watch. The detail is fantastic and to be made by an English man, now that is just incredible. You might find the accent funny at some places and the events in the film might be too familiar as such, but knowledge is not a reason to appreciate something great.

The Sea Inside –
Ramon Sampedro. Euthanasia. Spain
One of the most beautiful films and when its Spanish, nothing less is expected. Very inspiring, both the characters and the story line. It is like film made at an entirely new level. I wish I had watched it a little more recently so that I could give a better view-point, but I must say that this is one film which will move you from the sea of sadness and joy, all with an inexplicable force.

Film IMDB rates More info
Schindler’s List 8.9 Schindler’s Ark by Australian novelist Thomas Keneally
Milk 7.7 The Times of Harvey Milk – A documentary
The Diving Bell and the butterfly 8.1 Translation of French memoir – The Diving Bell and the Butterfly
Gandhi 8.1 Autobiography – The story of My experiments with Truth
Mar Adentro 8 Adapted in Bollywood film Guzaarish

 Film Table – 1

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