Thursday Movie Picks: Fake Identity

a weekly series hosted by Wandering Through the Shelves

I have always been fascinated by con artists, so you can't imagine how happy I am that this week's Thursday Movie Picks is featuring them as we are asked to pick films about fake identities. Without any further ado, here are my favourite three: 

Mulan (1999) - Review

The first film I saw in a movie theatre as well as my favourite Disney Classic, this beautiful film tells the story of a young Chinese maiden who, in order to save her father from certain death, disguises herself as her father and joins the army in his place. 

Parasite (2019) - Review

Many people's favourite Best Picture winner in recent years — mine included — Bong Joon-ho's film follows a happy but poor family whose condition improves when they are hired by an upper-class family, the Parks. How does it fit? Because each of them uses a fake identity to land the job, and they have to keep the fact that they are family a secret. 

Purple Noon (1960) - Review

The first adaptation of Patricia Highsmith's The Talented Mr. Ripley, this flawed and yet terrific film follows Tom Ripley (Alain Delon), a young man who is hired to go to Rome and bring a rich kid (Maurice Ronet) back to the US. Things go out of control when Tom begins to play with identities.

18 comments :

  1. I've probably seen all of Mulan grudgingly since my various nieces and nephews watched it on a seemingly endless loop there for a while but never cared enough to really concentrate on the story.

    This version the Ripley tale and the Matt Damon one share many similarities and are good films but are so different as well. This one is icy cold which suits the main thrust of the story. Alain Delon is perfect in the lead.

    I have yet to see Parasite though I have every intention of doing so. It's the only BP winner I've yet to catch up with.

    I found three that took slightly different directions in dealing with the theme.

    This Side of the Law (1950)-Picked up on a vagrancy charge wanderer David Cummins (Kent Smith) is bailed out by lawyer Philip Cagle (Robert Douglas) because he bears a remarkable resemblance to multi-millionaire Malcolm Taylor. As it happens Taylor is about to be declared dead after having gone missing seven years hence, if David will assume Taylor’s identity and convince his estranged family-wife Evelyn (Viveca Lindfors), brother Calder (John Alvin) and sister-in-law Nadine (Janis Paige)-that he is truly the missing man Cagle will pay him five thousand dollars. What seems like easy money quickly spirals into a web of deception and murder.

    The Man Who Never Was (1956)-During WWII as Britain mobilizes to invade Sicily, intelligence agent Ewen Montagu (Clifton Webb) conceives a diversionary scheme to lead Germany to believe the true target is Greece. Creating the false identity of Major William Martin for a young man with no family who recently died of pneumonia (giving the appearance of drowning) Montagu plants phony top secret documents on the body and arranges for it to wash ashore in Spain. While Hitler believes the information German undercover agent Patrick O’Reilly (Stephen Boyd) is skeptical. His suspicions risk exposing the deception.

    The Great Imposter (1961)-Young Ferdinand Demara Jr. (Tony Curtis) quits high school to join the Army with hopes of becoming an officer but finds his lack of education stands in his way. His solution is to fake papers as an officer in the Marines but eventually his lie is detected. On the run he assumes the identity of a Trappist monk. In time though he again must flee and as the years pass Demara impersonates a sailor, prison warden, teacher and doctor as his journeys take him around the globe. This is based on a true story.

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    1. Purple Noon and The Talented Mr. Ripley is probably the only time I loved both adaptations. Their being so different is what makes both so good.

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  2. I can't believe I didn't think of Mulan when I love that movie so much. We match on Parasite! I've never seen Purple Noon though.

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    1. I hope you'll have the chance to watch it because it's really good.

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  3. We share a pick with Purple Noon. Awesome film. Plus, who doesn't love Parasite? My mother loves that movie.

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    1. Your mom has good taste. Mine can't even be bothered to watch it.

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  4. I have yet to see Mulan but heard good things about this Animated film. I liked Parasite until the bloodbath that just seemed to come out of nowhere. I hated that part which, I felt, took this movie out into left field. I saw the remake with Matt Damon which was creepy, unsettling but so good. I would like to see the original one day.

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    1. I'm so sorry. I actually loved that part and I found that it really added to the film's message.

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  5. I haven't seen Parasite which I want so much to see and I've only seen the Matt Damon's Ripley so I'm curious about this adaptation.

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  6. Nice picks! I can't believe I didn't think of Mulan. But I almost picked Parasite. What a perfect film. I totally expected for one of the characters to accidentally slip that they were a family.

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  7. Parasite - excellent film and a perfect choice for this theme.
    I've never seen Mulan or any Ripley adaptation.

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    1. Both Ripley adaptations are great, but if you watch Mulan make sure it's the original animated film, not the new live action.

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  8. Parasite is such a perfect fit this week! I've never seen Purple Noon but I enjoyed the Matt Damon version so I'll have to check it out :)

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    1. They are two very different films but they are both great in my opinion.

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  9. We match with the first two picks :-D I wasn't aware of the existence of the third one, but I'm intrigued to see that take on The Talented Mr. Ripley!

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    1. It's different from the Matt Damon film but so good. I hope you'll enjoy it!

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