Thursday, January 30, 2014

Dekalog (The Ten Commandments) (1989)

First off, this is not a movie. This is actually a TV miniseries. But it's on the list, so I'll review it.  This is actually a ten-part miniseries that aired in the '80s.  This gives me an idea.  Maybe I will find other interesting miniseries and share them.  I am going to break each part into its own mini-review.  It should be noted that I watched each episode on a different day.  I am giving this an 8/10.  It's getting a higher rating based on the sheer effort it took to make all these stories.

1st story.

Here we see a father and son who are good at computers. The young son has questions about life and death, and wonders about the existence of a soul. The father does not believe in souls, but, of course, that's not good enough. His sister enrolls his son in Bible school behind his back. Then, of course the son does something stupid and ice skates by himself. He falls through the thin ice and dies.  What did we learn? Always have a buddy if you are going ice skating, swimming, or surfing. It's all about safety.

2nd story

This one just seemed to drag on forever.  A woman's husband is supposedly dying in a hospital.  She asks the doctor what his prognosis is because she's pregnant by another man and wants to know if she should get an abortion or not.  The doctor tells her he doesn't know his prognosis yet.  The woman goes ahead and schedules one and calls her lover to tell him she's going to do it.  He doesn't like this idea because without the connection of a baby, he knows she will leave him.  So she sleeps behind her dying husband's back and tries to destroy the evidence.  You know, the father of the baby has a right to his opinion too.  She goes to the doctor and tells him she's scheduled an abortion. The doctor flat out tells her not to do it.  THen, later that night, her husband wakes up and is fine.  His disease looks gone.  He walks to the doctor's office, who doesn't look surprised at all, and tells him that he is going to have a baby and is happy.

3rd story

This was the weakest one I have seen so far. A lonely lady on Christmas gets the married man she sleeps around with to drive her around town under the guise of looking for her husband, while in reality he's living somewhere else.  She lied to avoid being lonely on Christmas and dragged a man away from his wife and kids.  Well it's his own fault for sleeping with her in the first place.

4th story

Here's the fourth episode, which is Honor Thy Father and Mother.  A girl reads a letter from her deceased mother that confesses that the man who has raised her her entire life is not her biological father.  And then she tells him that she has feelings for him!  And she takes her shirt off!  Then it turns out she made the whole thing up, so they burn the real letter and pretend nothing happened! What?! Why do I watch these so late at night?  How am I supposed to go to sleep now? That is straight messed up.

5th story

This story is the director's opinion that the death penalty is wrong.  However, we need to keep serial killers off the street, and I don't want my tax dollars going to feed them, clothe them, give them shelter and free medical care when there are hungry children and homeless people who never did anything wrong.

6th story

This one was tense from beginning to end.  A lonely teenager spies on a thirtysomething year old woman from his apartment window.  He works at a post office and sends fake messages to get her to come to his work.  He even gets another job delivering milk so he has another excuse to see her.  Eventually he admits to her he's been spying and loves her.  At first she is angry but takes advantage of his spying to ask him on a date.  It is obvious that she does not believe in love but has sex purely out of lust.  She invites him to her apartment and taunts him.  He gets so upset that he runs back home.  He cuts his own wrists, but his friend's mother, who he's living with, finds him.  So he goes to the hospital and will be okay.  The woman is very apologetic and never meant for this to happen.  She continually checks the hospital and his work to see if he's been discharged.  So, she does care about him.  Is she starting to believe in love?  Don't worry, he is physically okay.  And yet, the ending is very open.

7th story

A 16-year-old has a baby, and her mother raises it as her own.  Now, she is 22 and still just as immature, living at home.  She takes the child and intends on taking her to Canada with her.  The father of the baby shows that he doesn't want to take care of her, so she runs off into the woods.  Her parents find her in a train station, and the child runs to the mother and hugs her.  The girl runs and jumps onto a nearby train, abandoning her child.  Guess she still wasn't mature enough to be a mother after all.

8th story

This story concerns a Polish/English translator who visits a professor to translate her books.  The professor asks her to sit in on one of her classes.  During her class, she tells her students that the welfare of a child is the most important thing.  The translator's bullshit meter goes off and tells a story.  The story is of a Jewish girl who was set to stay with a Catholic couple during WWII for protection.  At the last minute, the couple turns her away because they're afraid of what might happen if they're caught.  The professor realizes that she's talking about her, and she's ashamed of what she did.  They talk afterwards and the professor tells her that she's always thought about her, and realized that children are the most important thing and that she should not have turned her away.  She learned from experience and became a better person because of it.  Meanwhile, the translator held a grudge against her her entire life and gained nothing because of it.

9th story

A man discovers that he can no longer have sex, and encourages his wife to find someone else.  When she does, he spies on them and then runs his damn bike off the road.  What the hell.

10th story

Here is the final story. A man dies with seemingly nothing but a collection of stamps.  His sons find out that the stamps are worth millions, but are told not to sell them, because they are their father's life work, and it would be disrespectful.  Meanwhile the sons get so obsessed with completing the collection that one of them trades a kidney for it.  Then, their stamps are stolen! I think the stamp collectors stole it because they knew the father had a huge collection and who else would know the value of them?  The sons should have kept them in a safe or in a safety deposit box in a bank, not laying around in an empty house.

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