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Frösche fallen vom Himmel, Szene in Magnolia

Warner Bros.

Das erste Mal: Magnolia

You know those blockbusters or cult films which everyone has seen except you? This summer, the FM4 team is coming clean and admitting to some serious lapses in cinematic experience. For example my aversion to all things Tom Cruise has kept me from what some call a turn-of-the-century masterpiece.

By Riem Higazi

Picture it. 1999. I’m at the start of a two year process of breaking up with a boyfriend. The soundtrack to my misery was a copy of the soundtrack to the movie Magnolia, which a friend who visited me left behind by mistake. I am not proud of this, but I listened to this song on a loop for a truly shameful length of time.

Aimee Mann’s melancholy bitter sweet songs, which scored the Paul Thomas Anderson 1999 epic family drama and impressive cast ensemble film Magnolia, were all I knew about the movie until I finally saw it last week. I’ll admit it. I didn’t see it almost twenty years ago because Tom Cruise rubs me the wrong way. But I now understand, why some say it may still be the greatest performance of his career.

Tom Cruise was nominated for an Oscar as best supporting actor for his role as a motivational speaker specializing in teaching men on how to pick up women. His creepy overbearing character is just one of many extreme characters that make up this intricately woven story of coincidence, addiction, betrayal, murder, redemption, forgiveness, family.

In der FM4 Sommerserie Das erste Mal stellen sich Filmredakteure endlich jenen berühmten oder vieldiskutierten Streifen, die sie bislang immer verpasst haben.

I can’t even begin to try to sum up the epic storylines that intertwine during Magnolia. But what I can say, is, that the performances range from the outstanding such as the one delivered by the late Philip Seymour Hoffman to the over the top one from Juliane Moore. Other featured players make the film worth seeing for sure - John C. Reilly, William H. Macy, Melinda Dillon, and Jason Robards.

There is also a very convincing and memorable troupe of frogs, which... Ah... No.

I won’t give it away, in case you too have still not seen the powerhouse of unsettling but quirky drama that is Magnolia.

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