The Impossible reviews

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Re: The Impossible reviews

Postby ITALIANO » Wed Jan 09, 2013 6:00 pm

No, I was just joking: I'm perfectly ok with being "white" (which, I agree, doesn't mean much) and with being Italian - not exactly proud maybe (I don't think one should be proud of his nationality), but definitely not ashamed! And I'm very happy of being European - I love this old, dusty, problematic continent. I feel very European.

It's true, though, that - except for an intense "Scandinavian period" when I was much younger - I'm often instinctively attracted by darker types, but it's really just an aesthetic thing. Plus I can't complain - I do have some Southern Italian blood, which has given me these brown hair and eyes that I quite like in others.

But still I belong to what we can conventionally call "the white race". And you do, too. (Sicily, by the way, while geographically close to Northern Africa - and for a period culturally close to it, too - was also dominated for another period by the Normans, and one can still see that in the faces, especially in the eyes, of many Sicilians today).

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Re: The Impossible reviews

Postby rolotomasi99 » Wed Jan 09, 2013 4:47 pm

ITALIANO wrote:You may not consider yourself 100% white, but unfortunately ethnicity isn't a subjective thing. I'd love to be black but I am sadly white - just as you are.


Right..."white" and "black" are completely objective, scientifically accurate labels. There is absolutely no way people could have differing views on who is white or black. :roll:

I am sorry you feel so bad about being white (whatever that word actually means to you). Are you ashamed of being Italian specifically (which seems odd given your name) or European in general? I know for purely aesthetic reasons, I wish my skin was darker. However, I am quite proud of my Italian heritage. I do not feel the same about the little bit of German I have in me.

Is there a specific race/ethnicity you wish you were other than Italian/European?
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Re: The Impossible reviews

Postby ITALIANO » Wed Jan 09, 2013 2:19 pm

You may not consider yourself 100% white, but unfortunately ethnicity isn't a subjective thing. I'd love to be black but I am sadly white - just as you are.

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Re: The Impossible reviews

Postby rolotomasi99 » Wed Jan 09, 2013 12:48 pm

ITALIANO wrote:
rolotomasi99 wrote: I just wanted to let you know how Italians and Spaniards (as well as Portuguese and Greeks) are considered not 100% white by some in the U.S.


But this doesn't mean that they are right, as I'm sure you know...


Well, as someone who is Italian (Sicilian specifically) I consider myself not 100% white. I have been mistaken for Hispanic many times (even by other Hispanics) and have even had people ask me if I am part Asian (again, by people who were themselves part Asian). I have been told by Africans that I have the most nappy hair they have ever seen on a "white boy" (which is why I laughed out loud at a similar scene in LINCOLN). I can easily believe at some point my ancestors intermingled with someone who was African or maybe Middle Eastern. I just do not identify ethnically/racially with the blond hair/blue eye paradigm of white.

You are free to identify however you want, but I was just pointing out why so many folks on this board might be annoyed by the "whitening" of the family in THE IMPOSSIBLE. In the U.S., the white Anglo-Saxon Protestant culture often see Italians and Spaniards as different from them. We are not quite black or brown, but we are certainly not 100% white. As a European (specifically Italian) you clearly have different views on what "white" means. I was just explaining why some of us from the U.S. felt something egregious had taken place with the casting of such white actors.
Last edited by rolotomasi99 on Wed Jan 09, 2013 4:48 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: The Impossible reviews

Postby Sonic Youth » Wed Jan 09, 2013 10:27 am

Can't we just retire the word "Caucasian" already? It's as anachronistic as Negroid and Mongoloid, and most people don't know what it means anyway.

Anyway, that's my pet peeve....
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Re: The Impossible reviews

Postby ITALIANO » Wed Jan 09, 2013 10:23 am

rolotomasi99 wrote: I just wanted to let you know how Italians and Spaniards (as well as Portuguese and Greeks) are considered not 100% white by some in the U.S.



But this doesn't mean that they are right, as I'm sure you know...

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Re: The Impossible reviews

Postby rolotomasi99 » Wed Jan 09, 2013 10:16 am

ITALIANO wrote:
mlrg wrote:Great analogy with Missing.


Not exactly. While Missing was certainly about the situation in Chile, its focus was on the political attitude which America showed towards the Chilean regime - the compromises, the ambiguities, the collaboration between the US and what objectively was a repressive dictatorship. So it made sense (and not only from a narrative point of view) that its central characters were American - the movie intentionally dealt with this particular (and back then not much talked-about) aspect of the question. Costa-Gavras's film is REALLY about America.


I agree 100%. I was thinking the exact same thing when MISSING was first mentioned, but you worded it far better than I ever could. The use of U.S. citizens in a story about the political situation in Chile is far different from "bleaching" (making them as white and blond as possible) of the real-life family in THE IMPOSSIBLE.
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Re: The Impossible reviews

Postby rolotomasi99 » Wed Jan 09, 2013 10:10 am

ITALIANO wrote:On a side note. I couldn't care less, of course, but I've read it too often in this thread and on other American boards where they discuss this movie. So let's make this clear once for all: Spaniards - and Italians - don't have a different skin color from Americans. We are Caucasians - in other words, white. I swear that the color of my skin isn't brown or black - I would be very happy if it WERE, but it isn't, and I must point it out.


First of all, Italians are not Caucasian. Caucasian specifically refers to people from the South Caucasus region.

The use of Caucasian as a classification for all "white" people is actually very racist in its origins. It comes from the concept of white superiority. You can read more about it here:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Caucasian_ ... he_concept

Now with that out of the way, I would say that in the United States Italians and Spaniards are not considered purely white. White is usually understood as Anglo-Saxon. We (I am of Italian descent) are technically white since that is how our government classifies us. However, people from the Middle East are classified as white by the U.S. government, but most U.S. citizens consider them "brown" or something else.

While the U.S. government almost always has classified Italians as white, there are some examples of laws used against "colored people" being applied to Italians, particularly in terms of denying them housing and jobs because they were not "white."

There is even a case called Rollins vs. State (1922) where a court ruled an Italian woman (specifically Sicilian) was not guilty of violating the anti-miscegenation laws for marrying an African man since Italians could possibly have African heritage given their proximity to the continent and their darker features.

This may all be more than you even cared about Italiano, but I just wanted to let you know how Italians and Spaniards (as well as Portuguese and Greeks) are considered not 100% white by some in the U.S.
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Re: The Impossible reviews

Postby ITALIANO » Wed Jan 09, 2013 6:28 am

On a side note. I couldn't care less, of course, but I've read it too often in this thread and on other American boards where they discuss this movie. So let's make this clear once for all: Spaniards - and Italians - don't have a different skin color from Americans. We are Caucasians - in other words, white. I swear that the color of my skin isn't brown or black - I would be very happy if it WERE, but it isn't, and I must point it out.

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Re: The Impossible reviews

Postby ITALIANO » Tue Jan 08, 2013 7:02 pm

mlrg wrote:Great analogy with Missing.


Not exactly. While Missing was certainly about the situation in Chile, its focus was on the political attitude which America showed towards the Chilean regime - the compromises, the ambiguities, the collaboration between the US and what objectively was a repressive dictatorship. So it made sense (and not only from a narrative point of view) that its central characters were American - the movie intentionally dealt with this particular (and back then not much talked-about) aspect of the question. Costa-Gavras's film is REALLY about America.

I've seen The Impossible, and even I have noticed the amount of not only Caucasian but actually blond victims in the movie. By the way I think that an American director would have been more "open" about this issue than this Spanish director, obviously anxious to conquer the American market, has been. Still, I would have definitely forgiven these flaws if the movie had given us interesting, three-dimensional characters, and a surprising, affecting story line. MY main problem with The Impossible is that I found it flat, simply flat - a tv movie made with a big budget. Nobody should be Oscar-nominated here - least of all Naomi Watts. The boy is good though.

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Re: The Impossible reviews

Postby Reza » Tue Jan 08, 2013 3:41 am

I saw this last night and it certainly isn't Best Picture material. Nor should Watts be on the list. She is good but basically she screams alot and then is flat on her back for most of the running time. And the Tsunami sequence was shockingly underwhelming. Just Watts and son bobbing up and down in the flowing river. I expected more spectacular CGI effects.

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Re: The Impossible reviews

Postby OscarGuy » Mon Jan 07, 2013 11:27 am

I think The Impossible will be more like Children of Men than either of those two films you mentioned. Children of Men came out too late in the year to have much impact on the Oscar race.

I would be perfectly satisfied with its placement on the Oscar Best Picture slate, but it isn't a box office hit like The Blind Side was and it isn't produced by Scott Rudin like Extremely Loud was.
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Re: The Impossible reviews

Postby rolotomasi99 » Mon Jan 07, 2013 11:13 am

Two points:

1. I agree with Uri's points about this film. It did not make me dislike the movie, but the whole time I was watching it I kept thinking "Wow, that tsunami was really racist! It seemed to only hurt white people." I know there were a few Asian victims in those crowded hospital scenes, but for the most part it was only people of European descent the story really lingered on. Not just that, but most of them were blonde! The main family, the little boy Lucas saved, the young boy Lucas found for the worried father. Maybe it was just the way the cinematographer lit everything, but all the white folks were made to look absolutely angelic. Despite these criticisms, there was much I found to admire about this film. I have enjoyed both of Juan Antonio Bayona's movies, and he has shown himself to be a quite skilled director. I look forward to following his career. Also, the visual effects in this film deserve an Oscar nomination more than the cartoonish looking alien attack from THE AVENGERS.

2. Naomi Watts does not deserve a best Lead Actress nomination. It has nothing to do with her actual performance, which was quite good, but simply has to do with her not being the lead. She was on screen for less than half the film, and half the time she was on screen she was lying motionless and/or with an oxygen mask on. I know category fraud happens every year, but this is ridiculous. She is as much a lead as Ewan McGregor, and he is being pushed as supporting.
There is one lead in this film, and it is Tom Holland who plays eldest son Lucas. He was quite phenomenal. He gave an amazingly nuanced performance, and you really felt like you saw this character mature from a sullen pre-teen to a mature young man. Just like Quvenzhane Wallis, his age should not be keeping him from receiving the praise and recognition his performance has rightfully earned. I am glad the studio is citing him in the lead category in their FYC ads, but for once I actually wish they would pull some category fraud just so he could be nominated. This was an amazing year not just for young actors but also acting debuts (Holland, Wallis, and Suraj Sharma from LIFE OF PI).
I think a lead actress nomination on Watts would be a waste, particularly if it is at the expense of older actresses like Mirren or Riva.

I also agree with anonymous1980, who said this film could pull a surprise Best Picture nomination, much like THE BLIND SIDE and EXTREMELY LOUD AND INCREDIBLY CLOSE.
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Re: The Impossible reviews

Postby mlrg » Mon Jan 07, 2013 6:45 am

Thanks Precious Doll.

Great analogy with Missing.

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Re: The Impossible reviews

Postby Uri » Mon Jan 07, 2013 6:24 am

mlrg wrote:I won’t refrain.

It’s my opinion. Your commentary is absolute nonsense to me. And I ask you why don’t you criticize Haneke for filming upperclass Parisian couple instead of lowclass rural couple.


I honestly, sincerely, really really don’t get your analogy. Too dumb, I’m afraid. Let’s leave it at that.


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