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Long Walk to Freedom: The Silence of Others

By Michael Sandlin. Despite its low-budget workmanlike feel, this documentary from Emmy-winning directors Almudena Carracedo and Robert Bahar – and produced by Spanish directorial titan Pedro Almodovar – just may be one of the most socio-historically significant European documentaries of recent years. Although it may not have the depth and artistry of other notable post-military-junta […]

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Taming a Wild Man: Matteo Garrone’s Dogman

By Thomas Puhr. He is a slight man: short and hunched, as if perpetually carrying a heavy load. His head and eyes constantly dart around, almost bug-like. Only when with his dogs, or spending a few days with his estranged daughter, does he seem slightly less on edge. This unease is palpable to others, who […]

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Trick and Treat: Penny Lane’s Hail Satan?

By Elias Savada. Never has a Penny Lane film been this funny. An academic-now-turned-full-professional-documentary-filmmaker, she has provided a window into the weird and wonderful for the last half-dozen or so years with her handful of features and several compelling shorts. She loves to take unusual relics of our planet and expose them in any variety […]

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Super Heroes Matter – Avengers: Endgame

By Elias Savada. It has come to this, the emotional end of the Marvel Comic Universe as we know it. In our real world, mankind has been gifted with 22 movies featuring (mostly) beloved characters. The magnificently collected groups of superheroes (Black Panther and Captain Marvel being among the latest additions) have traveled far and […]

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Scared Stiff: Ghost of No Chance

By Rod Lott. New on Blu-ray from Arrow Video, 1987’s Scared Stiff arrives with a stunningly inaccurate title – one that suggests a light comic romp, thanks to two earlier Hollywood pictures bearing that name, the more notable being a 1953 pairing of Dean Martin and Jerry Lewis. But Andrew Stevens and Mary Page Keller are no […]

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Dickinson Unbowdlerized: Wild Nights with Emily

By Elizabeth Toohey. Biopics, especially literary ones, tend to gravitate towards the grandiose. Sweeping vistas and luxurious estates command center stage as a setting for glamorous historical figures cloaked in elegant costumes whose lives appear a tumultuous series of clandestine love affairs, artistic ambitions, and untimely deaths. These period pieces, in other words, take themselves quite […]

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Beyond the Distractions: The Brink

By Michael Sandlin. Seeing populist political shyster Steve Bannon’s slow professional demise play out over the course of Alison Klayman’s documentary The Brink might be pitiable if Bannon was just your average morally bankrupt politico. But Bannon is not exactly a sympathetic figure, especially considering he proved to be too right wing even for the […]

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Knife+Heart: Of Felonies and Fellatio

By Rod Lott. Whereas several of Brian De Palma’s works famously suggested tools and utensils as phallic, Yann Gonzalez’s Knife+Heart removes all doubt. Right from scene one of his giallo-influenced LGBTQ arthouse thriller, young and able-bodied men succumb to the fatal thrusts of a serial killer’s knife whose blade is concealed in retracted form by a […]

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All Fight, No Feeling – Master Z: Ip Man Legacy

By Yun-hua Chen. Action itself is not enough to compose a good action film – we see yet another hard-earned lesson in Master Z: Ip Man Legacy. Directed by Woo-Ping Yuen, the famous Hong Kong action choreographer, and produced by the same producers of Ip Man 1, 2, 3, 4, Raymond Bak-Ming Wong and Donnie […]

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Little on the Syndrome: Stockholm

By Gary M. Kramer. Stockholm, written and directed by Robert Budreau, recounts the “absurd but true” 1973 Norrmalmstorg (Kreditbanken) robbery and hostage crisis that introduced the “Stockholm Syndrome” – the condition where a hostage bonds with their captor. This peculiar crime drama starts out rocky, but then manages to exert a pull on viewers who become […]

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