Home » Features You are browsing entries filed in “Features”

Facts are Not Stupid Things: Lessons from The Reagan Show

By Heather Hendershot. One week after Donald Trump’s inauguration, Sinclair Lewis’s It Can’t Happen Here reached the #9 position in book sales on Amazon. Brave New World held the #15 slot. Sales also spiked for Margaret Atwood’s The Handmaid’s Tale. At the same time, according to Penguin USA, sales of 1984 increased by 9,500 percent. The 1984 uptick […]

Posted in Features | Read More »

Still More to the Story: I Am a Fugitive from a Chain Gang! by Scott Allen Nollen and Paul Muni by Michael B. Druxman

A Book Review Essay by Matthew Sorrento. It may be tempting to recommend Scarface (1932) or Little Caesar (1930) as a first viewing to newcomers of pre-Code. However, Mervyn LeRoy’s I Am A Fugitive from A Chain Gang! (1932) or the similarly powerful Wild Boys of the Road (William Wellman, 1933) are stronger choices with […]

Posted in Features | Read More »

Master of Italian Gothic – Riccardo Freda: The Life and Works of a Born Filmmaker by Roberto Curti

A Book Review Essay by Tony Williams. Many decades ago I heard a comment made by a respected scholar, and affirmed by a graduate student whom he later hailed as England’s greatest film critic, concerning the merits of destroying all films that did not live up to any canonical cinematic Great Tradition definitions. They both […]

Posted in Features | Read More »

When Tay Garnett Met Frankie and Johnnie: Her Man (1930)

by John Andrew Gallagher. Tay Garnett and and writer Howard Higgin spent the months of February and March, 1930 on Catalina Island writing Her Man, sharing a house with Lewis Milestone, who was working on the script of All Quiet on the Western Front with George Cukor, George Abbott, Del Henderson, and Maxwell Anderson. The […]

Posted in Features | Read More »

The Roots of Social Change: Ermanno Olmi’s The Tree of Wooden Clogs on Criterion

By Christopher Weedman. The Criterion Collection deserves to be commended for their continued efforts to bring greater attention to the underappreciated films of director Ermanno Olmi. It is regrettable that, over the past fifty years, this Italian filmmaker’s deeply humanist oeuvre has largely lived in the critical shadows of the country’s acknowledged art cinema maestros […]

Posted in Features | Read More »

The Function of Film Criticism at Any Time

By Christopher Sharrett. Readers will note that my title derives from essays and certain phrases by Matthew Arnold, T. S. Eliot, F. R. Leavis, D. H. Lawrence, Robin Wood, and Andrew Britton. I in fact stole it from Leavis, and will risk pomposity. In no way would I claim that my slapdash work has much […]

Posted in Features | Read More »

A Forgotten Country’s Forgotten Cinema: Searching for Hope in Post-Soviet Moldovan Cinema

By Brandon Konecny. It has been suggested, sometimes by Moldovan film professionals themselves, that cinema does not currently exist in the Republic of Moldova, Europe’s poorest and perhaps least known country. At first blush, we might feel inclined to accept this assertion. After all, Moldova’s cinema was virtually nonexistent in the 1990s, and some have […]

Posted in Features | Read More »

Kentucky Fried Chicken in the Moonlight

By Orville Lloyd Douglas. Black people are still mentally enslaved; even in the 21st century there is a psychic need by some Black artists to seek white approval and acceptance. The universal acclaim of the independent film Moonlight is due to white film critics, most heterosexual. Black films are made for white people, not for […]

Posted in Features | Read More »

The Aesthetic Majesty of King Hu: A Touch of Zen on Criterion

By Tony Williams. As I write, hours tick away for the latest unimportant event in film history – the Hollywood Academy Awards which will have millions glued to their television sets totally unware both of its worthless significance and the nauseating spectacle of a meritless institution narcissistically patting itself on the back to award prizes […]

Posted in Features | Read More »

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 […]

Posted in Features | Read More »