Nida Faraz looks At Some Powerful Dramas
Dramatic elements elicit strong emotions and delve deeply into the intimate core of human relationships. Drama as a film category spans a range of genres, including horror, thrillers, noirs, and comedy. These movies can center on heartwarming subjects, be viewed with a tissue in hand, or can take deep dives into serious matters. Dramas force audiences to grapple with issues of morality and the hard choices that govern what’s right and wrong. Drama evokes powerful emotions across subjects such as law and order and dramatic themes also show up in classic romances, and dark histories. Drama undergirds suspense and fear and it is the element that makes the audience identify with the characters. Dramas inspire empathy as well as critical thinking.
The Right Stuff’ (1983)
Directed by Philip Kaufman “The Right Stuff” offers a NASA space program origin story filled with rousing, emotional melodrama about the brave men who were there at the beginning. Sam Shepard, Scott Glenn, Dennis Quaid, and Ed Harris make up the ensemble cast of heroic renegades with the guts to face danger. With a three-hour running time, it was a box office flop, despite strong critical acclaim and a best picture Oscar nomination in recognition of the stirring flight sequences that merge with an art house vibe.
This movie was directed by Alexander Payne. Paul Giamatti plays a dejected, middle-aged writer who embarks on a wine-tasting road trip with his womanising buddy (Thomas Haden Church), who longs for a last hurrah before his upcoming marriage. Director Alexander Payne captures both the hilarity and tragedy of the pair’s adventures that make for lovelorn disasters. Wine culture and the snobbery of connoisseurs provide a backdrop for a film about finally facing reality.
‘A Woman Under the Influence’ (1974)
This film was directed by John Cassavetes who wrote and directed his wife Gena Rowlands in this examination of mental illness and how it affects families. The film was released independently but gained acclaim for its gritty realism, as it explores domestic turbulence within a family in crisis. Rowlands’ performance of a woman with depression and anxiety is considered one of the great screen performances by an actress.
‘Barry Lyndon’ (1975)
The film was directed by celebrated director Stanley Kubrick who adopted William Makepeace Thackeray’s novel that portrays staid 1770s European culture in sumptuous period detail. The slow pace and meticulous production offers a critique of social mores that crush the individual spirit. Ryan O’Neal plays the title role in what’s regarded as one of Kubrick’s lesser-known masterpieces.
‘The Truman Show’ (1998)
It was directed by Peter Weir. The premise of Peter Weir’s enthralling drama—that one’s life could be a television show without their knowledge—premiered just before the reality TV boom, and before the digital age made cameras ubiquitous. Jim Carrey stars, in one of his first dramatic roles, as a man who discovers his entire universe is a partially scripted production filled with actors and extras.
‘Little Women’ (2019)
Greta Gerwig wrote and directed the latest cinematic adaptation of Louisa May Alcott’s novel, set in Civil War era Massachusetts and focused on the March sisters. Gerwig’s visually lavish update uses a nonlinear structure as it examines the women’s roles, and the ways each sister negotiates and upends the demands of courtship and career in a culture that confines them. TW