“Author Archive”
Stories written by Matthew

Dividing Lives: Petar Valchanov and Kristina Grozeva’s Glory

By Devapriya Sanyal. At first glance it may seem that Glory, the new Bulgarian film directed by Petar Valchanov and Kristina Grozeva, belongs to Tzanko Petrov (Stefan Denolyubov), the honest but simple linesman who returns the cash he finds on a railway track he services. In the beginning nothing much happens – you meet Petrov who […]

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Tough Onscreen and Off: The Lives of Robert Ryan by J.R. Jones

A Book Review by Irv Slifkin. In The Lives of Robert Ryan (Wesleyen University Press, 2015), Chicago film critic J.R. Jones points out the many contradictions in the actors’ career and life as reflected in the title of the book. The actor did, in fact, lead many lives. Ryan was a tough Irishman with an […]

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If Only We Could Live for Today: After the Storm

By Elias Savada. The actual typhoon in After the Storm is more than a physical catastrophe. It’s a powerful metaphor for an acclimatized world of broken families. It takes more than half this modest, sensitive Japanese feature’s nearly two-hour running time for the gusts and driving rain to arrive, wherein the cleansing process begins. As […]

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“The Road Leads to Nowhere” – Utopian Television: Rossellini, Watkins, and Godard Beyond Cinema by Michael Cramer

A Book Review by Tony Williams. Last week, a friend and fellow reviewer Chris Sharrett told me about his experiences at the Society for Cinema and Media Studies Conference that drew immediate parallels, not with the more accomplished zombie films of George A. Romero, but countless others reworking familiar lyrics into – “Forgettable! That’s what […]

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Performing Gender and Self: Anup Singh’s Qissa

By Devapriya Sanyal. Qissa (“fable”), Anup Singh’s second directorial venture (2013; released in India in 2015), deals with many issues at the same time, with all its characters equally important. But this film belongs to the Sikh Punjabi character Umber Singh (played by Irrfan Khan). Beginning in the present, the film visits the past through a long flashback and comes […]

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Into the Land of Salt and Fire: An Interview with Veronica Ferres

By Jeremy Carr. Since the late 1980s, German actress Veronica Ferres has appeared in dozens of films and television productions, garnering widespread praise in the process. In recent years, she has starred in such English-language titles as Pay the Ghost (2015), with Nicholas Cage, and The Comedian (2016), with Robert De Niro. Meanwhile, Werner Herzog, […]

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Frantz and the Gentle Art of Forgiveness

By Elias Savada. Let’s refresh: the films of French writer-director François Ozon tend to be sly, unsettling, and daring observations of the human condition, whether playing with a 1950s musical mystery (8 femmes [8 Women], 2002), diving into a provocative thriller (Swimming Pool, 2003), offering some froth in the 2010 wife-empowered comedy Potiche, or upping the […]

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Practicable Jokes in Macdonald Hall: An Interview with Mike McPhaden

By Tom Ue. Following the enormous critical and commercial success of Go Jump in the Pool (2016), based on Gordon Korman’s novel of the same title, director Vivieno Caldinelli and the cast return for two more adaptations of Korman’s Macdonald Hall titles: The Wizzle War and This Can’t Be Happening at Macdonald Hall. In what follows, […]

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The Women’s Balcony: An Interview with Screenwriter Shlomit Nehama

By Anna Weinstein. The Israeli film, The Women’s Balcony, directed by Emil Ben-Shimon and written by Shlomit Nehama, is a comedy/drama about community, old traditions and values, and the power of women to keep all of these together in the face of modern extremism. The story is set into motion when the women’s balcony in an […]

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Shopping for Ghosts: Olivier Assayas’ Personal Shopper

By Elias Savada. As I watched Personal Shopper, I wondered if this new, mostly English-language film from French filmmaker Olivier Assayas was a Euro thriller or not. I certainly wasn’t on the edge of my seat. The premise in this French-German production is that Maureen Cartwright (Kristen Stewart), a weary, despondent American in Paris, has a […]

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