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The Resurrection of Abel Gance’s J’accuse (1938) on Olive Films

By Christopher Weedman. The past couple of months have been full of rich rewards for admirers of the late Abel Gance. This brilliant and innovative French film director enriched the visual vocabulary of the early cinema with his silent spectacles J’accuse (1919), La Roue (1923), and Napoléon (1927), which were instrumental in the evolution of […]

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I Wake Up Screaming: Far from “Kansas”

By Anthony J. Steinbock. The Maltese Falcon is often considered to be the first film noir of the classical noir period (beginning in 1941 and ending in 1958 with Orson Wells, Touch of Evil).[1] Released only two weeks after The Maltese Falcon (Houston, October 18, 1941) is another noir included in the classical catalog, namely, […]

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The Lovers and the Despot: Forced Seduction, North Korean Style

By Johannes Schönherr. The Lovers and the Despot, a 2016 documentary by British directors Robert Cannan and Ross Adam, tackles an especially bizarre episode in Korean history playing out in the late 1970s / the first half of the 1980s. An episode that has been told countless times in magazine articles and newspaper texts as […]

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Antoine Fuqua’s The Magnificent Seven: Loss of Grace

By Christopher Sharrett. I have always thought that John Sturges’s 1960 Western The Magnificent Seven has suffered too unfavorably in comparison to its source material, Akira Kurosawa’s Seven Samurai (1954). Kurosawa’s film, like all of his samurai films, was heavily influenced by Ford, Hawks, and Walsh, making him, to my mind, the most westernized, the […]

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Entertaining Mr. Klein: Eclipse Series 9 – The Delirious Fictions of William Klein

By Tony Williams. Although this special Criterion three film DVD set has been available since 2008, it is only recently that I have discovered the work of William Klein. I first came across the name associated with the French anti-Vietnam War film Mr. Freedom which at the time of co-editing the first edition of Vietnam […]

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Rare Welles No Longer Unseen: Chimes at Midnight and The Immortal Story on Criterion

By Tony Williams. Long awaited by many, following either unavailability or dubious accessibility via duped 16mm copies, unwatchable VHS copies, and bootlegged DVDS, two of Welles’s most accomplished achievements are now available, thanks to the Criterion Collection’s high standard of reproduction. I first saw Chimes at Midnight theatrically in the late 60s as well as […]

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Once There Were Bawdy Tales: Nosrat Karimi’s Matrimonial Comedies

By Ramin S. Khanjani. Of all directors associated with the pre-1979 “Iranian New Wave,” Nosratallah Karimi probably presents one odd case for study. With the inconsistent critical reception of the films he has to his credit as an actor and director,[1] Karimi is classified as belonging to a borderline sub-group of New Wave directors labelled […]

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Son of Saul: Versions of the Irrational

By Christopher Sharrett. I have been meaning for some time to put pen to paper about last year’s superb achievement by Laszlo Nemes, Son of Saul, but have hesitated for various reasons, not least of which was that any comment by me on the film would as this point seem wholly superfluous. But after numerous […]

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Michael Morris’ Hermeneutics: Visual Music, Expanded Cinema, New Aesthetic

By Michael Betancourt. Michael Morris’ expanded cinema performances, Second Hermeneutic (2013) lasting approximately nine minutes, and Third Hermeneutic (2014) lasting approximately eleven minutes, are both produced using a combination of traditional 16mm film projectors and video; Third Hermeneutic also employs digital technology – a laptop computer running a custom Midi-controlled piece of software created with the […]

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In Praise of Susan Oliver: The Green Girl (2014)

By Tony Williams. “She was so much more than the Green woman in Star Trek” (George Pappy DVD audio-commentary). “What I knew I didn’t want was to just get married and become a housewife and lose my identity.” (Oliver: 81) Produced and directed by George Pappy, who also co-wrote the script with editor Amy Glickman Brown, […]

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