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Not Your Grandfather’s Raging Bull: The Happiest Day in the Life of Olli Mäki

By Elias Savada. Aki Kaurismäki may have to scooch over a bit to make room in the upper tier of Finnish cinema for thirty-something director Juho Kuosmanen. While Kaurismäki’s deadpan style has spanned 18 features since 1983, the 60-year-old auteur said his latest film, The Other Side of Hope, would be his last. While there are […]

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24 Frames: A Sad Goodbye to Kiarostami (Cannes 2017 Review)

By Ali Moosavi. The late Iranian director Abbas Kiarostami’s last film, 24 Frames, was shown as a special event of the 70th Cannes Film Festival, bringing an innovative, masterful career to an end. His words introduce the project best: I first conceived of 24 Frames while reflecting on the works of iconic painters whose pieces were created prior to […]

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Moody and Improved: Sofia Coppola’s The Beguiled (Cannes 2017 Review)

By Ali Moosavi. Sofia Coppola’s decision to remake Don Siegel’s 1971 film The Beguiled (in Official Competition at this year’s Cannes), seems on the surface as strange and intriguing as Coen Brothers’ remake of Henry Hathaway’s True Grit. Both films had been made from a novel adaptation by directors with a solid reputation and both starred […]

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Bright and Bleak: Wind River (Cannes 2017 Review)

By Ali Moosavi. Taylor Sheridan has written the script for a couple of terrific thrillers recently: Sicario and Hell or High Water. This year he is in Cannes in the Un Certain Regard section as a director with another great noir, Wind River (only his second feature after 2011’s little known Vile). We are told […]

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Super Troopers, or Super Dupers? Superheroes on World Screens, Edited by Rayna Denison and Rachel Mizsei-Ward

A Book Review by Tony Williams. Before you can say “Meryl Streep”, “Mamma Mia”, “Shazam”, in addition to the many superheroes and heroines and recent critical studies, Superheroes on World Screens (University Press of Mississippi, 2016) co-edited by two “Wonder Women” appears. Despite the earlier necessary demolition done by William Klein in Mr. Freedom (1969), the figure […]

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Haneke Does Happy: Happy End (Cannes 2017 Review)

By Ali Moosavi. Michael Haneke’s new film Happy End played at the Official Competition section at this year’s Cannes Film Festival. Haneke is a Cannes veteran, having won the Palm d’Or for Amour and The White Ribbon, Best Director for Hidden, and Grand Jury Prize for The Piano Teacher. Happy End can be described as a […]

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A Caricature of Godard: Michel Hazanavicius’s Redoubtable (2017 Cannes Review)

By Ali Moosavi. Michel Hazanavicius became a cinema celebrity six years ago at Cannes where The Artist became the sensation of the festival and went on to win several Oscars, including Best Film, Director, and Actor. This year Hazanavicius is back at Cannes, in the Official Competition category with Redoubtable. It is, by any means, a […]

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Be There Demons? A Dark Song Looks for the Answer

By Elias Savada. Grief changes you. It can drive you to do dark and drastic things outside your normal routine. Such aberrations are the creepy core of Irish director Liam Gavin’s moody chamber piece, A Dark Song. This excursion into the realm of magick was influenced by the life and strange times of legendary occultist Aleister […]

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The Splendid “Zone”: Tarkovsky’s Stalker Restoration by Mosfilm

By Anthony Uzarowski. Whenever a film gets digitally restored and reissued after a considerable amount of time passes from its initial release, the first question that comes to mind is: is it still relevant? This is especially true of works by renowned filmmakers, auteurs whose artistic voices defined their own time and whose films contributed to […]

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The Young Girls of Rochefort: Nearly Utopia

By Christopher Sharrett. I somehow conflate in my mind’s eye images of Les Parapluies de Cherbourg/The Umbrellas of Cherbourg (1964) and Les Demoiselles de Rochefort/The Young Girls of Rochefort (1967) with images of my experiences of the late Sixties. This seems odd, since these masterworks by Jacques Demy, although fully-accomplished films, have no real resemblance […]

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