All the films from all the editions, including those subsequently removed, presently totalling 1187. An easy way of seeing how…
A Matter of Life and Death
Neither Heaven nor Earth could keep them apart!
When a young airman miraculously survives bailing out of his aeroplane without a parachute, he falls in love with an American radio operator. But the officials in the other world realise their mistake, and despatch an angel to collect him.
The December Challenge: Film #100
What is life without love?
This is a question at the heart of Powell and Pressburger’s classic, A Matter of Life and Death: a movie I adore unreservedly and the only fitting choice for my 100th film of the December Challenge.
It seems to me that your first introduction to the work of The Archers often ends up becoming a lifelong favourite. Their films, particularly those made between ‘43-’48, are magical and transformative experiences that open your eyes to a whole new world of cinema you never even knew existed. Therefore, it’s hardly surprising that your first taste is always going to be the sweetest and most enduring. Whilst A Matter of Life and Death…
I LOVED this!
With a wonderful opening that's eerily reminiscent of Frank Capra’s It’s a Wonderful Life from the same year, but far superior in both execution and elocution, and a central conceit that may have been influenced by Alexander Hall’s Here Comes Mr. Jordan, but turned on its head, A Matter of Life and Death is simply charming.
There’s something about that particular time where it’s ok for true love to blossom in the space of minutes over the wireless. We believe it. Completely. When by chance, and I’m so glad that chance always works for the better in these types of films, our soon to be lovers meet, against all odds on heaven and earth, you know this…
🎵🎵 ooooh heaven is a place on earth 🎵🎵
If I had been smart, I would have prepared myself for this review by finding an online thesaurus and finding all the synonyms for 'wonderful' that I could possibly could.
I didn't do that, though, because I was too busy watching this film. It was a completely different experience watching this today compared to when I first saw it as a 19 year old. Back then my film tastes were not particularly defined (in fact, they're still not) and I was just watching anything that was on and that I fancied the look of. I didn't know anything about A Matter Of Life And Death when it came on Channel 4…
Film #21 of Project 40
”A weak mind isn't strong enough to hurt itself. Stupidity has saved many a man from going mad.”
The eternal power of true love. That seems to be a very clichéd statement, something that has been repeated so many times in cinema, soap operas and teenage romance novels that has lost its meaning and power. But long before all these heartless romantic fiesta that surrounds us these days two visionary, incredible and modernistic artists created something which even by today’s standards and after all the technological and structural advancements of cinema looks avant-garde, profound and technically breathtaking. A Matter of Life and Death is a movie full of fine thematic, anatomical and technical details meaning…
PTAbro's World Tour Stop 2: United Kingdom
If I had to make a list of all-time great openings for films, A Matter of Life and Death would certainly be in the top 20. It's a bit of genius to start a film with the emotional and visual power of a scene that by all rights would be the climax of a lesser film. Niven immediately blew me away with the achingly cool banter he traded with June, and his demeanor cements him instantly as the centerpiece of the film, even more so than the lush sets and plot's concept. Using that level of emotional intensity within the first ten minutes asks a lot of the rest of your film to…
An airman is about to crash in his damaged plane. Talking to the female radio operator calling him in, he says goodbye to the world. Except, he doesn't die! Turns out the person due to pick him up to the next life couldn't find him in the fog. What follows is the attempts to force him to leave this life while he tries to stay. But is he just dreaming? Is it a psychological disorder that can be cured with an operation? Or is he really talking to a long dead French noble who is trying to take his soul to the next life?
i didnt like the movie but every time they called each other 'darling' my heart melted into a puddle
Not my cup of tea.
Optimistic, romantic and cinematic, A Matter of Life and Death is a glorious showcase of what movies can be. Even now, I recognise how far ahead of their time Powell and Pressburger were. Unfortunately, and this could just be me, I found this film to be too thematically obvious. I don't consider myself to be a cynic - hell, I loved La La Land - but the immense buoyancy of this film took me completely out of it. It's roots as a good-natured propaganda piece were visible, and as a result I couldn't care as much about the story. It's a shame. I'd been looking forward to watching this film for a while, and despite the fact I enjoyed it a lot, I just don't admire it the way most do.
As to be expected of Powell and Pressburger, we find a witty, charming and technically impressive work. Yet, in their other wartime-era efforts, the balance of drama, theme and metaphor was much more pleasingly maintained. Here it feels like a case (or perhaps an exercise, given how deliberate it all is) of the message overpowering the movie.
One of the greatest openings of all time - gloriously cinematic whilst also intensely intimate - belies the fallout: an undeniably great film on the ideas front where the emotion is never matched from those initial scenes. It's got real heart, boundless optimism and lots of charm. It's a bit sacrilegious but I just wanted to fall more in love with the central couple myself so that I could feel the risk of their possible loss above all the grandiloquence and philosophising.
“One is starved for Technicolor up there.”
Confession time. Although it's so well loved, so well known and so blatantly a natural choice for me I've never before seen A Matter Of Life And Death. That said to say I've “never” seen it before is perhaps putting it a bit too strongly. I've often caught it part way in (given the amount of times it's been on TV (especially since becoming a fixture on the plethora of digital channels we now have) this is perhaps hardly surprising) and been entranced, but after a few minutes I've always thought, I really shouldn't be watching this now or like this and need to see it properly right through. Now I have finally…
If "Wizard of Oz" could be turned into a courtroom drama, it would look very close to this.
What I found really interesting about this is the relationship between, man, woman and authority. That before a man and a woman can fall in love there's got to be appeals made and justifications made to the Father or 'the one who knows', who appears in a variety of forms: conductor, commanding officer, doctor, lawyer, judge. This is a two-hour-long proof, an insistence on the precedence of Love above and over the Law. "Love rules the court, the camp, the grove, and men below, and saints above; For Love is heaven, and heaven is Love."
I want you all to vote on what you think are the greatest films of all time!
This is going…