Sunday, March 28, 2010


My poll 73 ended with only one vote from me. This is the lowest record. Hahaha. Here is the result:


1.BERLIN ALEXANDERPLATZ (1980, Rainer Werner Fassbinder, 894 min)
+DOMBAIS ET FILS (2007, Laurent Jaoui, 180 min)
+GOLDENE ZEITEN (1981+1984, Michael Braun, 741 min)
+INTENSITY (1997, Yves Simoneau, 186 min)
+MASTER OF THE GAME (1984, Kevin Conner + Harvey Hart, 413 min)
+THE MURDER OF MARY PHAGAN (1988, William Hale, 251 min)
+RING (1999, Yoshito Fukumoto + Hiroshi Nishitani + Hidemoto Matsuda, 570 min)
+SALEM'S LOT (1979, Tobe Hooper, 184 min)
+A TIME OF INDIFFERENCE (1988, Mauro Bolognini, Italy)
+WAR AND REMEMBRANCE (1988, Dan Curtis, 1620 min)

Each of these mini-series got one vote, or 100 %.

11.THE BLOOD OF OTHERS (1984, Claude Chabrol, 175 min)
+CONDOMINIUM (1980, Sidney Hayes, 240 min)
+THE FRENCH ATLANTIC AFFAIR (1979, Douglas Hayes, 278 min)
+LACE II (1985, William Hale, 188 min)
+LONESOME DOVE (1989, Simon Wincer, 384 min)
+QUEENIE (1987, Larry Peerce, 233 min)
+PRIDE AND PREJUDICE (1995, Simon Langton, 300 min)
+RETURN TO EDEN (1985, Karen Arthur + Kevin James Dobson, 266 min)
+SARTRE, L'ÂGE DES PASSIONS (2009, Claude Goretta, 165 min)
+TROPIQUES AMERS (2007, Jean-Claude Flamand + Jean-Claude Barny, 312 min)

Each of these mini-series got 0 vote.

My mini-series wish list:
(Including some TV programs which are not exactly mini-series)

1.LES ALSACIENS – OU LES DEUX MATHILDE (1996, Michel Favart, 360 min)

2.ANSWERED BY FIRE (2006, Jessica Hobbs, Canada)

3.BLOOD & ORCHIDS (1986, Jerry Thorpe, 240 min)

" They should be hailed as heroes. Instead, they became they accused. Four young Hawaiian men, who find a beaten and raped nude Caucasian woman and rush her to a Honolulu hospital, are the defendants in a heated trial that underscores the divide between locals and powerful, plantation-running whites of 1937 Hawaii. Working from his own bestselling novel, Norman Katkov provides the script for this miniseries tale of twisted justice and deadly vengeance. As the investigating police captain, who swims against the tide of racism and rancor surrounding the case, Kris Kristofferson leads a notable cast that includes Jane Alexander, Sean Young, Jose Ferrer, James Saito and Madeline Stowe. "

4.DIE BUDDENBROOKS (1979, Franz Peter Wirth, West Germany, 614 min)

5.THE CAPTURE OF THE GREEN RIVER KILLER (2008, Norma Bailey, Canada)

6.CRIMINAL JUSTICE (2008, Otto Bathurst + Yann Demange + Luke Watson + Marc Jobst, 300 min)
" The worst thing Ben has ever done is, tonight, he takes his Dad's black cab out without his permission. But that's not why Ben ends the evening in a police cell. What looked to be a spontaneous evening of fun with a sexy stranger, Melanie, has culminated in a dead girl and Ben covered in her blood, holding the murder weapon. All the evidence points to Ben. There are no other leads. But he didn t do it. He can t remember all the events of the night, but he s sure he didn t. Ben is about to see what the criminal justice system does to someone who was in the wrong place at the wrong time. "

7.A CURSED MONARCHY (2005, Josée Dayan, France, 500 min)

8.DEADLY INTENTIONS (1985, Noel Black, 200 min)

9.DIAMONDS (2008, Andy Wilson, Canada, 240 min)
" Following a trail of greed and obsession, this powerful story traces the international web that brings us diamonds - the world's purest and most dazzling gems. From the fashionable enclaves of London, to the icy tundra of the Canadian Arctic, to the war-ravaged villages of Sierra Leone, Diamonds takes us inside the glamorous - and sometimes dangerous and illegal - international diamond industry. "

10.IL DUCE CANADESE (2004, Giles Walker, Canada, 240 min)
" As the storm clouds of the Second World War form, Canada seems to be a centre of calm. Certainly Angelo Alvaro, an Italian immigrant baker living in Montreal, and his family are blissfully unaware that their lives are soon to be uprooted.

Angelo and his wife, Sara, work energetically to expand their small business. On the advice of community leader Aldo Mazzotta, Angelo joins the local Fascist organization in hopes of drumming up more business. Their teenage son Mario is a budding musician and looks forward to being sent to Italy by the same Fascist organization for some serious music instruction. Mario’s mentally challenged uncle Momo is so taken with Mussolini that he dresses up as a Black Shirt and salutes Il Duce at every opportunity. Fascism is not a political philosophy for the Alvaros—or indeed for most Italian Canadians. They are naively unaware of Italian Fascism’s insidious forces. Only Sara’s father, Turi, has any real sense of what Fascism means; for the rest, being Fascist in Canada is simply an expression of pride in their Italian heritage. Indeed, even in the wider community, Mussolini has long been seen as a bulwark against godless communism and the Canadian government has never discouraged Italian Canadians from joining the Fascist Party—it is perfectly legal.

War comes, and everything changes. The Canadian government initiates a series of rapid raids through the Italian community; anyone suspected of being a threat to national security is arrested and interned in military prison camps. Being Fascist is no longer perceived as an innocent expression of Italian pride. Angelo, Mario and Momo are caught up in the sweep, turned in to the RCMP by Mazzotta, who buys his own freedom by playing the informer and selling out his harmless fellow countrymen. "

11.EDGE OF DARKNESS (1985, Martin Campbell, 317 min)
" Edge of Darkness (1985) begins routinely enough. Emma Craven (Joanne Whalley in her first staring role, a year before The Singing Detective in 1986) is a young environmental activist killed in mysterious circumstances. Emma's father, Ron Craven, (Bob Peck in a star-making performance) will not be silenced and, as a police detective, is uniquely positioned to pursue his own unofficial investigation. He moves from grief to a determination to find the truth, all the while advised and/or comforted by Emma, but is she a ghost or a manifestation of his haunted psyche? Craven digs deeper, uncovering labyrinthine conspiracy in the nuclear industry and, as the body-count rises, encounters the garrulous CIA agent Darius Jedburgh (a superb Joe Don Baker) with a mysterious agenda of his own. Accompanied by a haunting musical score by Michael Kamen and Eric Clapton, Edge of Darkness builds on the legacy of Tinker Tailor, Soldier Spy and Smiley's People to become quite simply the best television thriller ever. Originally shown in six, 50-minute episodes, this tape presents the first half of the groundbreaking environmental-espionage shocker, tightening the ratchets of suspense to levels which would have turned Hitchcock himself green ... with envy. --Gary S. Dalkin "

12.EIGHT HOURS ARE NOT A DAY (1972, Rainer Werner Fassbinder, 470 min)

13.GOYA (1985, José Ramón Larraz, Spain, 330 min)

14.HOLOCAUST (1978, Marvin J. Chomsky, 475 min)
" The 30th anniversary edition of Holocaust marks the first time this remarkable, nine-and-a-half-hour television miniseries has been released on DVD. Originally broadcast on NBC as part of an ongoing TV phenomenon in the 1970s called "The Big Event," Holocaust was an original story written by Gerald Green, who later scripted Kent State and Wallenberg: A Hero's Story, the latter another Holocaust-era tale. Holocaust narrowed the enormous story of the Nazis' systematic destruction of Jews by focusing on one family living in Berlin. Fritz Weaver plays Dr. Josef Weiss, a Pole with a longtime family practice. Weiss debates with his wife, Berta (Rosemary Harris), the wisdom of moving out of Germany with their family. She insists they should not be chased away by Hitler, and by the time she thinks otherwise, it's too late for her, her parents, Josef, and the three Weiss children: Karl (James Woods), Rudi (Joseph Bottoms), and Anna (Blanche Baker). Holocaust begins with the marriage of Karl to Inga (Meryl Streep), a Christian, an arrangement already frowned upon by the rising Nazi regime in 1935. In time, Karl, a harmless artist, is dragged off to the concentration camp at Buchenwald, leaving Inga vulnerable to a predatory camp officer who passes notes between the husband and wife. Poor young Anna meets a grim fate that reveals something of the way Hitler was determined to eliminate the mentally ill along with Jews, gypsies, homosexuals, and other groups of people. The rebellious Rudi ends up fighting the Germans from a different front, while Josef is deported to Warsaw, eventually joined by Berta. There, Holocaust details the plight of the walled-in, so-called Warsaw ghetto, and the despair of the people within. Meanwhile, the destiny of another important character, a rather effete lawyer named Erik Dorf (Michael Moriarty), offers a peek into the internal workings of the Holocaust machinery. Dorf takes a much-needed job as an aide to Reinhard Heydrich (David Warner), Gestapo head and chair of the 1942 Wannsee Conference, which finalized plans for the extermination of European Jews. Holocaust was criticized at the time of its broadcast for allegedly cheapening genocide by shrinking the dimensions of the Nazis' organized evil for commercial television. But as a story free to extend into different aspects of the war on Jews, Holocaust is a real eye-opener. Tom Bell, Ian Holm, Robert Stephens, and Sam Wanamaker are also featured in the cast. --Tom Keogh "

15.HUMAN CARGO (2004, Brad Turner, Canada)
" Human Cargo is a critically acclaimed, dramatic 6 part mini-series set in the world of the Canadian refugee system, international terrorism and the anarchy of one of Africa’s most vicious civil wars.

Shot on location in Vancouver and South Africa, Human Cargo features a top international cast including Oscar™-nominee Kate Nelligan (The Prince of Tides), multi-award winner Nicholas Campbell (Da Vinci’s Inquest), and Cara Pifko (This Is Wonderland). Directed by Brad Turner (24). "

16.ISLAND AT WAR (2004, Peter Lydon + Thaddeus O'Sullivan, UK, 540 min)
" Dramatisation of the events surrounding the capture of the Channel Islands during World War II and three of the families that struggle to come to terms with life under a new, dictatorial regime. "

17.LES JURÉS DE L'OMBRE (1989, Paul Vecchiali, France, 364 min)

18.THE MASTER AND MARGARITA (2005, Vladimir Bortko, Russia, 500 min)
(Thanks to PC for telling me about this mini-series.)

19.ME ALQUILO PARA SOÑAR (1992, Ruy Guerra, Cuba, 330 min)

20.OCEANO (1989, Ruggero Deodato, Italy, 520 min)

21.PEER GYNT (1971, Peter Stein, West Germany) from Henrik Ibsen's play

22.PROCESO A MARIANA PINEDA (1984, Rafael Moreno Alba, Spain, 300 min) from the writing of Federico García Lorca

23.SANDRA PRINCESSE REBELLE (1995, Didier Albert, France, 720 min)

24.THE SECRET DRAWER (1986, Michel Boisrond + Roger Gillioz + Edouard Molinaro + Nadine Trintignant, France, 312 min)
" Michele Morgan is an absolute triumph: what a truly stunning actress she is. Without spoiling the mystery ... Morgan plays a glamorous psychologist whose businessman husband (her third) is killed in a plane crash. Shortly after the funeral her world is turned upside down: bailiffs arrive at her apartment to repossess her furniture: this wealthy widow is, in fact, broke - her late husband has taken out loans in her name, and forged her signature to do so. Whilst his bureau is being taken away a secret drawer is discovered, containing a wallet with mysterious contents. From then onwards Morgan's life becomes the stuff of detective novels. She is followed, discovers more secrets than you can shake a stick at, turns detective, travels to Geneva and Rome, and can trust no-one except her three children and her ex-husband, a high ranking policeman. The only trouble is they refuse to believe what is happening, so she basically has to unravel the mystery alone, until she meets up with a figure from her husband's past, Vivi, played by Jeanne Moreau. What is so clever about The Secret Drawer is the genuinely believable interplay between Morgan and her three screen children, all of whom have interesting personal lives which run parallel to the sleuthing being done by their mother. In particular, the gorgeous Marie France-Pisier, as Morgan's eldest daughter, is excellent and very funny "

25.SEE NO EVIL: THE MOORS MURDERS (2006, Christopher Menaul, UK, 180 min)
" Powerful and thought-provoking drama based on one of the most shocking crimes of the 20th century. This is the chilling story of child killers Ian Brady and Myra Hindley and how they were finally brought to justice. Convicted of the torture and killing of five youngsters, the Moors Murderers remain two of the most hated figures in Britain.

See No Evil reveals the untold story and is based on two years of intensive research and interviews with detectives and the key trial witness. It is produced in consultation with the murdered children’s relatives.

Starring Maxine Peak (Shameless), Sean Harris (24 Hour Party People), Joanne Froggatt (Spooks) and George Costigan (Casualty).

"Even 40 years on, it's hard to think of a subject more likely to raise hackles and misfire. So much braver, then, for ITV to tackle it; and so much more admirable for it to have been done so superbly." - The Daily Telegraph

"While it was undoubtedly grim viewing, it had a compulsive grip that I simply couldn't shake off." - Daily Express

"...Peake's performance (as Myra Hindley) was eerily convincing." - The Mirror

26.THE SORROW OF BELGIUM (1995, Claude Goretta)

27.TANNER'88 (1988, Robert Altman, 353 min)
" It still looks like one of the most adventurous projects ever undertaken for television: to concoct a fictional presidential candidate and follow him as he mingles (often improvising) amongst the real-life candidates on the campaign trail. Tanner '88 was the brainchild of director Robert Altman and "Doonesbury" cartoonist Garry Trudeau, who executed this on-the-fly series for HBO during the 1988 primary season. Thus we get "former Michigan congressman" Jack Tanner (Altman regular Michael Murphy) sorting out his messy professional and personal life as he hobnobs with the likes of Bob Dole, Pat Robertson, Kitty Dukakis, and real-life journalists. Some of these meta-fictional encounters are cameos, but some are remarkable full-blown sequences, such as Tanner's heart-to-heart with Bruce Babbitt as they stroll beneath Washington's cherry trees. (But then you always knew politicians were basically actors.) The deft supporting cast includes Pamela Reed and Cynthia Nixon. For fans of satire, Tanner is smart and sometimes mind-bending; for fans of Altman, it's the director at the top of his characteristic game: a multi-layered, many-sided ensemble picture that happens to be all about America. --Robert Horton "

28.WEEKEND STORIES (1996-2000, Krzysztof Zanussi, Poland)

29.WILD PALMS (1993, Kathryn Bigelow + Keith Gordon + Peter Hewitt + Phil Janou, 300 min)
" A dark, sexy, noir Los Angeles of the future is the backdrop for Oliver Stone's haunting, sci-fi saga of greed, treason and virtual reality. Harry Wyckoff (James Belushi) is about to become a player in a dark and terrifying battle where everything is at stake and no one is who they seem. Featuring an all-star cast, this story about a cult, a corporation, and a conspiracy to rule the country, is one of the most original movie events in recent history. "

30.A WOMAN CALLED GOLDA (1982, Alan Gibson, USA, 240 min) starring Judy Davis and Ingrid Bergman as Golda Meir
" As one legend playing another, Ingrid Bergman gives a shattering portrayal of Golda Meir, the first female prime minister of Israel. In fact, the film is shot through with drama, both onscreen and off, as the viewer is reminded that this fearless performance, for which Bergman won an Emmy, was her last; she died just three months after the film was aired in 1982. The biography of Meir is well known, and well told here: The daughter of Ukrainian refugees, she grew up in Milwaukee, and became involved in Zionist politics at an early age. She and her husband moved to a kibbutz in Palestine in the '20s--and there she focused her life on helping to establish a Jewish homeland in Israel. The supporting cast is splendid, with Judy Davis playing the young idealist Golda, and Leonard Nimoy, never better, playing Golda's politically active, and always supportive, husband. But the film belongs to Bergman, who so completely inhabits the look and mannerisms of Meir that she seems to fit comfortably inside Meir's skin. Gone is any trace of the glamorous movie star--but in its place is something even more compelling, and ultimately more beautiful: a performance haunting, powerful, and unquestionably inspirational. --A.T. Hurley "

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