Tuesday, August 01, 2006

BEAUTIFUL PEOPLE


From the Archive: 4/18/2005
BEAUTIFUL PEOPLE

The Bosnian War was a major event on the world stage in recent history, yet here in the United States, it never amounted to more than an occasional side bar on the evening news. Go ahead, think about it. What do remember from the Bosnian War? Chances are that anything you know about the war, you learned about it later on. It just didn't impact most Americans at the time. In Europe, on the other hand, it was big. One of the reasons, is that refugees from the war spread out across much of the continent (except for Bosnia), and made social and economic impact. This movie follows five groups of characters in London whose stories interconnect here and there.

In the opening scene, two refugees, from opposite sides of the conflict see each other on a public bus. One recognizes the other as someone who has commited some atrocity. They start fighting and get kicked off the bus. They continue fighting down the street until they're both injured and brought to the hospital. By some twisted quirk of fate, they're put in the same room in adjacent beds. ......... bad idea.

I liked this film because it depicts an aspect of war that you usually don't see. The movie doesn't spend too long looking at the actual combat. Instead, the characters have to deal with what they've seen, or done, or experienced, and the decisions they've made. I also like the interconnectedness of the story lines. It allows a natural way to segue between one plot line and another.

This movie has been compared to MAGNOLIA, which came out the same year. I would say that any comparisons are very superficial. Ultimately, BEAUTIFUL PEOPLE is a much more likeable movie, takes more chances, and is much more memorable.

Hope you like it.
Enjoy.

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