Festival Reports

The 2015 New York Film Festival Report »

The Lobster

By Gary M. Kramer.  The 53rd New York Film Festival runs through October 11 and there are several outstanding features by established and returning filmmakers playing at the fest. Here is a rundown…

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The 2015 New York Film Festival Shorts Program »


By Gary M. Kramer. The New York Film Festival is a terrific showcase for shorts, and this year, there are four short film programs with international, genre, animation, and New York themes that…

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The 12th Indian Film Festival Stuttgart »


By Yun-hua Chen. The Indian Film Festival Stuttgart, founded by Filmbüro Baden-Württenberg, is one of the oldest and largest Indian festivals in Europe. Previously named “Bollywood and beyond” up until 2011, the festival…

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The 2015 AFI Docs Festival Report »

Giovanni and the Water Ballet

By Gary M. Kramer.  The AFI Docs film festival showcased more than 50 feature and short length documentaries in Washington, DC, and Silver Spring, MD venues. Here is a rundown of two World…

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Highlights from the 20th San Francisco Silent Film Festival »

The Last Laugh

By Michael T. O’Toole. So, 20 years on and the San Francisco Silent Film Festival (SFSFF) is still proving their commercial knack for showcasing movies that cover the timeline, genre gaps and stylistic…

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Tribeca 2015 Festival Report »

A Courtship

By Michael Miller. The 14th Tribeca Film Festival unspooled April 15-26 at multiple venues in Manhattan. Notable this year is the fest’s major presence in the Financial District downtown; a very short walk…

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The 2015 San Francisco International Festival Report »

Steve Jobs: The Man in the Machine

By Mark James.  Conceived in 1957 by film exhibitor Irving “Bud” Levin as a way to expose the locals to foreign film, the San Francisco International Film Festival is the oldest in the…

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From Weeping to “Balls-Out”: An Interview with Horror Icon Barbara Crampton »

Barbara Featured

By Paul Risker. Looking back to You’re Next (2012) Barbara Crampton explains how: “It was with that movie that…

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Society’s Ailment(s): Sanna Lenken on My Skinny Sister »

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By Amir Ganjavie. Filmmaker Sanna Lenken’s debut feature, My Skinny Sister, concentrates on the societal problem of the eating…

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Emptying Myself: Doona Bae on Performance and A Girl At My Door »

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By Paul Risker. The art of film performance offers an actor the chance to explore identity in an intimate medium. But there are…

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Nordic Cat-and-Mouse: on the Series Øyevitne (Eyewitness) »

eyewitness 01

By Paul Risker. The latest Nordic series Øyevitne (Eyewitness, 2014) adds to the UK audience’s seemingly insatiable demand for…

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Emily Booth: Putting a Face to Television Horror as Presenter of Horror Channel »

Emily Booth

By Cleaver Patterson.  Emily Booth has a wealth of experience both in front of and behind the camera. As…

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Coixet in the Dark: A Conversation on Another Me »

Another Me

By Paul Risker. The Catalonian filmmaker Isabel Coixet has moved beyond her native tongue to work in various languages…

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Ben Kingsley and Company on Learning to Drive »

Learning 02

By Jude Warne. “The ferryman takes you from one bank of the river in his little craft, his boat,…

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A Dark, Personal Path: Javier Diment on The Rotten Link »

Rotten 01

By Paul Risker. If a film is a journey that starts with a germ of an idea and grows…

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Spotlight on the “Final Girl”: Akasha Villalobos and Danielle Evon Ploeger on Last Girl Standing »

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By Paul Risker. Billy Wilder, during his conversations with Charlotte Chandler (Billy Wilder: Nobody’s Perfect: A Personal Biography (2004))…

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Strength and Tenacity: Why Giving Up Isn’t an Option for Angela Dixon in Never Let Go »

Never 1

By Cleaver Patterson.  The sensitive subject of child abduction is brought to life in the new thriller Never Let…

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  1. An Ogre’s Hide: Samad and Foolad Zereh, the Ogre
  2. The Ethnographer of Fantasy: Woody Allen’s Irrational Man
  3. The Cerebral Thrills of The Messenger
  4. The Rise of NWA in Straight Outta Compton
  5. The 2015 New York Film Festival Report
  6. From Weeping to “Balls-Out”: An Interview with Horror Icon Barbara Crampton
  7. Society’s Ailment(s): Sanna Lenken on My Skinny Sister
  8. Bitter Earth: Alex Ross Perry’s Queen of Earth
  9. Monstrous Gaze: The Quandary of Spectatorship in La dolce vita
  10. Announcing the Fairleigh Dickinson University Press Series in Law, Culture and the Humanities
  11. Film Scratches: Connecting Personal and National History in The Royal Road (2015)
  12. Emptying Myself: Doona Bae on Performance and A Girl At My Door
  13. The Guy Who Never Grew Up: Five Easy Pieces
  14. The 2015 New York Film Festival Shorts Program
  15. Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation: The Indefatigable Action Spectacle
  16. Nordic Cat-and-Mouse: on the Series Øyevitne (Eyewitness)
  17. Emily Booth: Putting a Face to Television Horror as Presenter of Horror Channel
  18. BFI London Film Festival 2015: Festival Programme Launch
  19. FILM4 FrightFest 2015 Interview: Adam Mason on Hangman
  20. Film Scratches: Janie Geiser on the Life of Objects
  21. 2015 DC Shorts Film Festival: September 10-20, 2015
  22. Who Needs Enemies? — Getting Acquainted with Eddie Coyle and His Friends
  23. Coixet in the Dark: A Conversation on Another Me
  24. Ben Kingsley and Company on Learning to Drive
  25. Subversive Mysteries: François Ozon’s The New Girlfriend
  26. A Conchord Flies Solo: People Places Things
  27. State of Siege: The Radical Potential of Realism
  28. Invincible to the Extreme: Meru
  29. A Dark, Personal Path: Javier Diment on The Rotten Link
  30. A Director’s Labour of Love Gone Wrong: Ketan Mehta’s Manjhi: The Mountain Man (2015)
  1. Perry: Steve Jeffries, You might want to watch it again more recently. I only discovered this film last week, It had...
  2. Christopher Sharrett: William, this is a very intelligent and enjoyable close reading of this important film.
  3. Dan: Thank you for an interesting article. I’m fascinated by the idea, as put forward by Murray Pomerance, that...
  4. Christopher Sharrett: Thank you for this. State of Siege is among Costa-Gavras’s best work, and one of the...
  5. Robert K. Lightning: Thanks for the response. I must say immediately that I too don’t view the Tracy-Hepburn...



The Ethnographer of Fantasy: Woody Allen’s Irrational Man »

By Axel Andersson. The middle-aged philosophy professor Abe Lucas (Joaquin Phoenix) pulls up to a liberal arts college in Newport in an old Volvo, liberally helping himself to the content…

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The Messenger 3

The Cerebral Thrills of The Messenger »

By Cleaver Patterson. As the autumn nights draw in and winter fast approaches, the season seems more disposed to cinematic tales which induce unease within the viewer. The time is…

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The Rise of NWA in Straight Outta Compton »

By Kyle Huffman. In the first scene of Straight Outta Compton (2015), Easy E (Jason Mitchell) barely escapes a drug den being raided by the LAPD. This harrowing sequence feels like…

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Queen 1

Bitter Earth: Alex Ross Perry’s Queen of Earth »

By James Slaymaker.  Alex Ross Perry’s latest feature, Queen of Earth, explores similar thematic territory to his first three (Impolex, The Color Wheel and Listen Up Philip), but marks a radical expansion of his…

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Pieces 1

The Guy Who Never Grew Up: Five Easy Pieces »

By Jude Warne. “I move around a lot, not because I’m looking for anything really, but because I’m getting away from things that get bad if I stay,” says Bobby…

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Rogue 1

Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation: The Indefatigable Action Spectacle »

By Kyle Huffman. Every action movie relies on the audience’s suspension of disbelief regarding the humanity and dexterity of its star. Some, like Arnold Schwarzenegger and Sylvester Stallone, portray themselves…

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Eddie 1

Who Needs Enemies? — Getting Acquainted with Eddie Coyle and His Friends »

By Jeremy Carr.  In The Friends of Eddie Coyle (1973), Eddie Coyle sure could use a friend. Surrounded by many, known by even more, with a family and with former…

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The New Girlfriend, François Ozon film

Subversive Mysteries: François Ozon’s The New Girlfriend »

By Elias Savada. There’s a tendency toward sexual subversion and sly mystery in any François Ozon film. Naughty fun in the comic farce 8 Women (2002). A year later, the…

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People 01

A Conchord Flies Solo: People Places Things »

By John Duncan Talbird. New Zealand has given the world actors Sam Neil and Russell Crowe and directors Jane Campion and Peter Jackson. But above all others, I would have…

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State of Siege: The Radical Potential of Realism »

By William Repass.  In today’s economic and political climate, it can be tempting to dismiss film as merely spectacle: a flimsy replacement for or deflection from lived experience that nonetheless…

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Meru Expedition, Garwhal, India

Invincible to the Extreme: Meru »

By Elias Savada. I like looking at mountains. From a safe distance. Or on my computer screen saver. Occasionally, from above, in a well-protected, warm airplane. And, of course, from…

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A Director’s Labour of Love Gone Wrong: Ketan Mehta’s Manjhi: The Mountain Man (2015) »

By Devapriya Sanyal. Beginning in 2012, the Indian film audience has been treated on and off to a number of excellent biopics – the topics being covered in these films…

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Honor the Benefactor: Aviva Kempner’s Rosenwald »

By Elias Savada. Aviva Kempner has struck again. A Jewish liberal landmark in Washington for many decades, she has forged a multi-faceted career that includes making documentaries that focus on…

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Guidance 01 new

Letting Your Freak Flag Fly: Pat Mills’ Guidance »

By Elias Savada. The more you laugh at David Gold, the more you want to smack him on the side of his loopy head. He’s the central character in Guidance…

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Never 5

Never Let Go: Not Your Typical Horror Fare »

By Cleaver Patterson. It sounds odd that the screening for a film which is not primarily horror – at least in the generally accepted sense of the word – was…

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Split the Brew and Joints: Swanberg’s Digging for Fire »

By Elias Savada. Joe Swanberg apparently hasn’t stopped mumbling yet. Known for his mumblecore films — micro-budget affairs shot on video with lots of actor improvisation — Swanberg has barely…

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Cop Car 01

A Frolicsome Ride: Cop Car »

By Elias Savada. Somewhere out in the middle of America, amongst the Colorado cattle fields and its arrowhead-laden landscape, we find Travis (James Freedson-Jackson) and his long-haired buddy Harrison (Hay…

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Bota 1

Imprisoned by the Past: Narrative Mastery in Bota »

By Brandon Konecny.  In his foreword to William Faulkner’s novel Absalom, Absalom! (1936), John Jeremiah Sullivan points out that “a fundamental law of storytelling is: withhold information.” By this he means…

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Sublime Silences: A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night »

Girl 02

By Paul Risker. A Girl Walks Home Alone At Night (2014) – is it a statement or is it a question? On…

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The Mesmerising Journey of Song of the Sea »

Song 3

By Cleaver Patterson. Since that historic evening on the 21st December 1937, when the father of the animated feature film Walt Disney…

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A Personal Fever Dream: Listen to Me Marlon »

Marlon 01

By Elias Savada. Listen to Me Marlon, the new documentary about the controversial and complex actor Marlon Brando, follows a similar technique…

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“They Love Him!”: Paulo Coelho’s Best Story »

Best 01

By John Duncan Talbird. Director Daniel Augusto and screenwriter Carolina Kotscho’s biopic of the Brazilian writer, Paulo Coelho, Paulo Coelho’s Best Story,…

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Accidental Love: An Illuminating Failure »

Accidental 4

By Paul Risker. One of the intriguing occurrences that forms part of the spectatorial experience is the point when you will silently…

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Shirley: Visions of Reality »


By Robert Buckeye. She is from Seattle. She is from Dubuque, Dayton, Dover. She is going to San Francisco, Chicago, New York.…

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Sam’s Words Only: A Fuller Life »

Fuller 01

By Elias Savada. Samantha Fuller watched her journalist-turned-novelist-then-screenwriter, director and occasional actor dad grow old and angry with the Hollywood studio system.…

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Sunset Edge: Children at Twilight »

Sunset 2

By Christopher Sharrett.  While watching Daniel Peddle’s very interesting Sunset Edge (2015), I couldn’t help but think of F.R. Leavis’s reaction to George…

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“We Who Live, Will Learn” – André Singer’s Night Will Fall on BFI DVD »

Night 1

By James Knight.  During his legendary conversation with François Truffaut, Alfred Hitchcock remarked on the differences between feature and documentary filmmaking, stating…

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Loach on DVD – The Spirit of ’45 and Loach at the BBC »

Spirit of '45 2

By Tony Williams.  Two years before the disastrous election in England that gave the Conservatives a majority to complete the Thatcher Revolution…

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Can We Do It Ourselves? »


By Elizabeth Mizon. Why, in our democracy-obsessed society, do we balk at the idea of economic democracy in our workplaces? Why do…

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(Im)mortal Sherlock: Bill Condon’s Mr. Holmes »

Holmes 01

By Jude Warne.  With the recent onslaught of on-screen Sherlocks, one might wonder why a filmmaker would bring another interpretation into the…

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Revisiting the ‘Hard to Swallow’ Morality Tale of Tod Browning’s Freaks »

Freaks 1

By Cleaver Patterson.  In today’s age of anything goes splatterfests and in-your-face CGI, it’s perhaps hard to appreciate the full effect Tod…

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Out of the Clouds (1955): Ealing Headed to Grandeur »

Out 01

By Paul Risker.  From horror to comedy by way of black humour, this list reads like a roll call of honour that reiterates…

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Bollywood: Gods, Glamour and Gossip (2012) »

Bollywood Small

A Book Review by Alison Frank.  It is difficult for a book of just over 100 pages to cover any topic in…

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American Movies vs European Films: a Review of Leaves of the Tree »


By Noah Charney. There are some films that you watch and repeatedly think to yourself, “Wow, that’s beautiful.” The director, cinematographer and…

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A Romcom About Romcoms: The Film Critic (2013) »


By Jude Warne. Ideal film criticism is that which is as objective as possible. This is to ensure that the reader of…

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Banished to Strangerland »

Strangerland 01

By Elias Savada. The psychological story and claustrophobic/expansive landscape seem familiar, especially for fans of the series The Killing (2011-14) and Broadchurch (2013-…

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A Debut Emerges: Rebels of the Neon God (1992) »

Rebels 01

By Paul Risker. As Rebels of the Neon God (1992) opens, one cannot help but be struck by the weighty feel of the images.…

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The Suspense of Climate Change: Showtime’s Years of Living Dangerously »

Years 01

By John Duncan Talbird. The Showtime series Years of Living Dangerously is aware of how to make the unsexy topic of climate…

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Escalation as Class Conflict in Damián Szifron’s Wild Tales »

Wild Tales 1

By William Repass. Newton’s Third Law does not hold sway in Argentine filmmaker Damián Szifron’s Wild Tales (Relatos salvajes, 2014). On the…

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Big Game (2015): Hi/Low Concept »

Big Game

By Elias Savada.  If Oskari Kontio, the cautious, newly-minted 13-year-old boy that is half of the unusual buddy team in Big Game,…

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Slow Coen-esque West »

Slow 02

By Elias Savada. John Ford’s nowhere to be found. Stagecoach (1939) has left the building. There’s also no widescreen, large-ensemble-driven Silverado (1985) on the…

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Call Me Lucky: Bobcat, Crimmins, and American Culture »

Lucky 01

By Paul Risker. I was fortunate enough a few years back now to be in the opening night audience when Bobcat Goldthwait…

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Seeking the Intimate in The Overnight »

Overnight 1

By Paul Risker.  Film cannot escape the inevitable measure of its worth – how close the pendulum of critical and spectatorial judgment…

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PIXAR Goes Inside Out on Us »


By Elias Savada. What’s PIXAR gonna dream up next? Something about singing taste buds, perhaps? How out this for a ticklish tale…

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The Real Harry Lime: A Restoration of The Third Man (1949) »

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By John Duncan Talbird. What matters in that kind of role is not how many lines you have, but how few. What…

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The Wolfpack (2015): Too Close to Home »

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By Elias Savada.  Here’s a thought. Flip through the opening lines of an imagined screenplay for The Wolfpack…. It’s dusk. The Empire…

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Content and Technique in Samuel Fuller’s Forty Guns »

Forty Guns 1

By James Knight.  In Jean-Luc Godard’s Pierrot Le Fou (1965), Jean-Paul Belmundo turns to man at a party and says, “you seem…

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The Trials and Tribulations of The Three Hikers (2015) »

Hikers Featured

By Elias Savada. World premiering as part of the Washington Post Film Strand at this year’s AFI DOCS is The Three Hikers,…

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True Tête-à-Tête: Best of Enemies (2015) »

Best of 01

By Elias Savada. Oscar-winning (2013’s Twenty Feet From Stardom) documentary filmmaker Morgan Neville and Robert Gordon, a Grammy Award winning writer, author, and…

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The Human Imperfection of The Falling »

Falling 1

By Paul Risker. Worlds continue to merge as Carol Morley instigates an ongoing collision between narrative fiction and documentary within her young…

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Framing Africa: Portrayals of a Continent in Contemporary Mainstream Cinema (2013) »

Framing Africa

A Book Review by Martin Stollery. Framing Africa is a succinct book, academic in orientation, accessible in writing style, lacking illustrations, but…

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Nuns on the Bus: Radical Grace (2015) »

Radical Grace 02-NEW

By Elias Savada. Before Jorge Mario Bergoglio was elected the ultimately enlightened Pope Francis in March 2013, there were a lot of…

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San Andreas: The Empty Catastrophe »

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By Christopher Sharrett.   “Today it is easier to imagine the end of the world than the end of capitalism.” – Quote…

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Remorse in Short Supply: Peace Officer (2015) »

Peace 01

By Elias Savada. William J. “Dub” Lawrence should not be smiling. And yet his bright teeth light up the screen in the…

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An Intriguing Population of 94: Uncertain (2015) »

Uncertain 01

By Elias Savada. The new film from Ewan McNicol and Anna Sandilands begins like a mystery. It’s a dark night. A lone…

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Nothing Lost in Times Regained: On the Restored Apu Trilogy »

APU 02

By Paul Risker. Fifty-six years have passed since Satyajit Ray added Apur Sansar (The World of Apu, 1959) to Pather Panchali (Song…

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A Mind Went Black: Dark Star: H.R. Giger’s World (2014) »

Dark Star 04

By Elias Savada. You may not recall who the 20th President of the United States was. Or the name of the British…

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The Un-Dead Walks: The 100-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out the Window and Disappeared (2013) »

100 Year 02

By Elias Savada. “Being dead can have its advantages sometimes.” That’s just one of the translated pieces of tossed off dialogue delivered…

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“With Women Like You in the World…”: The Girl is in Trouble (2015) »

The Girl 01

By Jude Warne. The title of this thriller perhaps suggests all one needs to know about its plot, tone and perspective. A…

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Ex Machina: Woman Abused (to Small Concern) »

Machina 1

By Christopher Sharrett. Alex Garland’s Ex Machina (some radio announcers have said “ex masheena”—one wonders if anyone knows Athenian drama, and the particular…

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Rhythms of Nature: Kornél Mundruczó’s White God (2015) »

White God 02

By Paul Risker.  White God (Fehér istenr, 2014) emerges into being amidst a dreamy haze. While there is a lightness to the…

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The Trials of Love, Justice, and Prejudice: Tom Hanks and Jonathan Demme’s film Philadelphia »


By Daniel Garrett. In the film Philadelphia (1993), written by Ron Nyswaner and directed by Jonathan Demme, the actor Tom Hanks is…

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On the Trail of Missing Millions in Emerging Europe: What Happened to a Fortune in Slovenian A/V Rights Due to Artists and Producers? »

Branko Djuric in No Man's Land (2001)

By Noah Charney. Branko Djuric, who goes by the nickname Djuro, is one the biggest film and television stars of the former…

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The Site of Nature: Exteriority and Overexposure in The Thin Red Line »


By Trevor Mowchun. “Have mountains, and waves, and skies, no significance but what we consciously give them, when we employ them as…

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In Defense of Hitchcock and Serious Criticism »


By Robert K. Lightning. “It follows that the critic should read without inappropriate bias. We cannot properly object to The Pilgrim’s Progress,…

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Humanities in the Digital Era »

Lemmy Caution & Dr. Von Braun in Alphaville

By Wheeler Winston Dixon. We live in the age of the visible invisible; everything is supposedly available to us online, but in…

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The Fault in Our Films: Hollywood and the Illness Narrative »

The Theory of Everything

By Sheana Ochoa. Anyone who has watched the scene in the trailer of The Theory of Everything when Stephen Hawking’s character pulls…

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The Babadook: Ghosts in the Bedroom »


By Christopher Sharrett. Australian filmmaker Jennifer Kent’s The Babadook is last season’s fascinating, much-discussed contribution to the horror film, a genre that…

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Revulsion and Derision: Antichrist, The Human Centipede II and the British Press »


By Martin Smith. Despite increased transparency and liberalisation at the British Board of Film Classification (BBFC) in recent decades, Britain remains one…

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Lost in Space »


By Rajko Radovic. “I’m gonna wait till the stars come out. And see them twinkle in your eyes. I’m gonna wait till…

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“Isn’t it Bromantic?” – The Whole Damn Sony Mess, and What It Means »


By Wheeler Winston Dixon. Now that some time has elapsed between the Sony hack and the release of the film that apparently…

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The Best of 2014 – and the Most Overrated »

BOYHOOD: remarkable or overrated?

By Film International. Another film year has come to an end and it’s time to sum up. Here are the films that…

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Tati Time: Criterion Delivers The Complete Jacques Tati »


By Jeremy Carr.  Aside from his general lack of recognition as one of film history’s great comedians, the most tragic part of…

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“A Giant Gutter in Outer Space”: On the Schopenhauerian Themes of HBO’s hit series True Detective »


By Mathijs Peters. Introduction Arthur Schopenhauer’s philosophy, which Samuel Beckett defined as “an intellectual justification of unhappiness – the greatest that has…

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The Radical Film Network: for sustainable, oppositional film culture »


By Steve Presence. “Today we do not really have any ‘centralized’ hubs like Indymedia anymore. What we do have is a proliferation…

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Five Iranian Voices on Reza Mirkarimi’s Today »


COLLECTED AND INTRODUCED BY AMIR GANJAVIE. Reza Mirkarimi’s Today (Emrooz, 2014) was selected to represent Iran at the 2015 Oscars despite being…

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“Turn It Off!” – Sound and Silence in 1960s British Gothic Cinema »

Dracula, Prince of Darkness

By Wheeler Winston Dixon. It’s Halloween once again, and as one might suspect, American cable networks are offering a cornucopia of horror…

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The Representation of Men in the Films of Abdol Reza Kahani, Houman Seyedi and Bahram Tavakoli »

Here Without Me

By Asal Bagheri. [Editor’s note: This essay is published here in conjunction with the publication of Film International 69, vol. 12, no.…

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Jafar Panahi’s The Mirror: On Political Film in Post-Revolutionary Iranian Cinema »


By Sara Saljoughi. [Editor’s note: This essay is published here in conjunction with the publication of Film International 69, vol. 12, no.…

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The Malick Illusion: Perceptual segmentation in The Thin Red Line »


By Luis Antunes Rocha. “The image, in terms of sound, always has the basic nature of a question. Fundamental to the cinema…

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Toward the Limit: Michael Bay’s Transformers: Age of Extinction »

Trans Feat

By Carol Vernallis. Michael Bay poses a problem. He is the second-highest-grossing director, after Spielberg, so it’s not surprising that critics and…

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Santo in the Museum of the Mexican Film Industry »


By John Burns. It seems that a number of historians and critics of Mexican film would be happier if the films starring…

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A World of Constant Peril: Seriality, Narrative, and Closure »

Lost City of the Jungle

By Wheeler Winston Dixon. What are we watching now at the movies, or on television or Netflix for that matter?[1] Serials –…

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Nixon – Oliver Stone’s Rough Beast Slouching »


By Tony Williams. Like most of his films, Oliver Stone’s Nixon (1995) generated considerable critical debate usually emphasizing questions of historical accuracy…

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Netflix and National Cinemas »

Netflix headquarters in Los Gatos (California, USA)

By Wheeler Winston Dixon. This article caught my attention about a week ago, and though I blogged on it then, it seems…

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Vindication of an Heiress: Surprise revelation, alienation effect, and screen persona in Beyond a Reasonable Doubt »


By Robert K. Lightning. Beyond a Reasonable Doubt (1956) was Fritz Lang’s final U.S. film.[1] In several obvious ways it can be…

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Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Garcia: Peckinpah the Dramatist »


By Christopher Sharrett. The label “master of violence” was long ago affixed to director Sam Peckinpah. Books on Peckinpah with titles like…

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Multicultural Middle-earth: Constructing “Home” and the Post-colonial Imaginary in Peter Jackson’s The Lord of the Rings »


By Laura Crossley. “The nation of course is not a desiring person but a fictive unity imposed on an aggregate of individuals,…

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Juan Orol, Phantom of the Mexican Cinema »

Juan Orol as Johnny Carmenta.

By Wheeler Winston Dixon. It’s a commonplace thing to discuss the individual vision of filmmakers, on both a national and international level,…

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The Trouble With Hitchcock »


By Wheeler Winston Dixon. Mark Rutland: “What do you believe in?” Marnie Edgar: “Nothing.” (From Alfred Hitchcock’s Marnie) Alfred Hitchcock is routinely…

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Female Sexual Pleasure Unpunished in Bright Days Ahead »


By Gwendolyn Audrey Foster. Finally, a film about an older woman who has an affair, and doesn’t get punished by the narrative.…

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Out of the Furnace: The Question of Adversarial Cinema »


By Christopher Sharrett. I did not see Scott Cooper’s Out of the Furnace during its initial run some months ago, in part…

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Bruno Dumont and the Revival of the Human, Part 3 »

Camille Claudel 1915

By Christopher Sharrett. To Part 2. Hadewijch Hadewijch is the first of two films (the second is Hors Satan) directly focused on…

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Bruno Dumont and the Revival of the Human, Part 2 »


By Christopher Sharrett. To Part 1. L’Humanité Bruno Dumont’s second film has been termed by certain commentators a “remake” of La Vie…

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Bruno Dumont and the Revival of the Human, Part 1 »

La Vie de Jésus

By Christopher Sharrett. Bruno Dumont is among our most important filmmakers, a fact that has gone mostly unnoticed outside Europe. His particular…

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Surviving the Monster Mom: Child’s Pose »


By Gwendolyn Audrey Foster. “I hope it’s like a mirror.” (Călin Peter Netzer on Child’s Pose) “They fuck you up, your mum…

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The Narcissistic Sociopathology of Gender: Craig’s Wife and The Hitch-Hiker, Part 2 »

The Hitch-Hiker (19

By Gwendolyn Audrey Foster. To Part 1. While Dorothy Arzner’s Craig’s Wife (1936) revolves around a pathological female who is undone by…

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Hollywood Nomad: Andrew Dominik’s Aussiewood »

Killing Them Softly

By Stephen Gaunson. “I live here now and I don’t like going home.” (Andrew Dominik qtd. in Sperling 2012) “I wouldn’t mind…

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An Ogre’s Hide: Samad and Foolad Zereh, the Ogre »

By Ramin S. Khanjani. For many avid followers of Iranian cinema across the world, the experience of this national cinema justifiably doesn’t go much beyond recent works of festival fixtures…

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Dolce 1

Monstrous Gaze: The Quandary of Spectatorship in La dolce vita »

By William Repass. In the thematic arc formed by Fellini’s body of work, La dolce vita  (1960) can be said to represent a pivot: his first film in which various…

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The Way, Way Back: An Appreciation »

By Christopher Sharrett. Some months ago I saw The Way, Way Back (2013) and was taken by it enough to buy the DVD. It is a small film, yet ambitious,…

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She's Funny That Way

Peter Bogdanovich: The Comedy Smuggler »

By James Knight. This August will see the US theatrical release of She’s Funny That Way, the latest feature from Peter Bogdanovich. Since his directorial debut in 1968, Bogdanovich has…

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Man of the West

Mise-en-scène and the Rebirth of Film »

By Tom Silva. Film is a living thing and so it faces an unending series of deaths. Like the mythic hero in Joseph Campbell’s magisterial book The Hero of a…

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Fair Game

Fair Game: Democratic Principle in Hollywood Romances, from Tracy and Hepburn to the Present »

By Robert K. Lightning. Lovers that demonstrate both spiritual affinity and spiritual equality have long been popular in middle-class entertainment. Repartee has often expressed that equality: one thinks of Shakespeare’s…

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Man of Hope

End of a Saga: Andrzej Wajda’s Wałęsa: Man of Hope »

By Geoffrey Fox. The credits roll over a black-and-white newsreel of missiles and men parading before an austere Leonid Brezhnev in Moscow on the 52nd anniversary of the October Revolution.…

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Discovering Mary Pickford »

By Tony Williams. The title of this article has a double meaning. It is primarily a reworking of that lavishly illustrated and meticulously researched 1999 publication Mary Pickford Rediscovered written…

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“Thinking as Negation”: Adorno, Vertigo, and the Paradoxical Promise of Popular Cinema »

By Benjamin Bergholtz. “Each single manifestation of the culture industry inescapably reproduces human beings as what the whole has made them.” (Adorno and Horkheimer 2002 [Dialectic of Enlightenment]: 99) Few…

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The Agony of Woman in Gett: The Trial of Viviane Amsalem »

By Christopher Sharrett. Ronit and Shlomi Elkabetz’s Gett: The Trial of Viviane Amsalem is a work of such staggering importance that its significance to its own culture (Israel), certainly relevant,…

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Dial M for Murder

The Pictures of a Lady: In Praise of Grace Kelly »

By Daniel Garrett. Some old films have a special appeal. They might not be excellent or particularly beloved objects, and yet they have something that sustains our attention. When I…

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Motherhood and Mourning in Giuseppe Tornatore’s The Unknown Woman »

By Francesco Pascuzzi. Already with the film’s title, Giuseppe Tornatore’s The Unknown Woman (La Sconosciuta, 2005) sets out to toy with the audience’s perspective and its perception of the lead…

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Un Flic: Melville and the Ambiguities »

By Tony Williams. On initial release, Jean-Pierre Melville’s Un Flic (1972) disappointed many and has remained in critical limbo to the present day. Despite growing appreciation of its visual style,…

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Stand, Men of the West! The Battle for Middle-earth (and Britain) »

By Laura Crossley. “You’ve enjoyed the film, so now what are you going to do about the message? Tolkien didn’t just write The Lord of the Rings for fun, you…

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Radical Film-Making and Digital Paradox: the case of The Fourth Estate »

By Elizabeth Mizon and Lee Salter. Digital media technologies are full of paradoxes. On one hand they are said to open up new opportunities, a “democratisation” of media, but on…

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