Festival Reports

The 36th Istanbul Film Festival: Golden Tulip Scents in Istanbul »

Yellow Heat (Sarı Sıcak)

By N. Buket Cengiz.  No matter how much face Turkey loses on the international stage particularly with its friction with European countries, Istanbul Film Festival is a phenomenon in Turkey that has always…

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Tribeca Talks: Alejandro González Iñárritu and Marina Abramović »

Tribeca Talks: Directors Series - Alejandro González Iñárritu. Photo by B Lacombe.

By Gary M. Kramer. This year, at the Tribeca Film Festival, one of the Tribeca Talks programs featured Mexican filmmaker Alejandro González Iñárritu being interviewed by Yugoslavia-born artist, Marina Abramović. “She is the…

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Rotterdam 2017: This Is How the Reconstruction Continues »

Sexy Durga (Sanal Kumar Sasidharan, 2017)

By Martin Kudláč. International Film Festival Rotterdam that built its brand on investigating, gathering and curating the future of the world cinema through a long-term focus on emerging auteurs and discoveries possessing an innovative…

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The FrightFest 2016 Report »

the-windmill-massacre

By Cleaver Patterson.  Is it done intentionally? Are film festival programmers that creative? Well, assuming they are, those behind 2016’s FrightFest clearly put quite some thought into the films showing at the Vue…

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The 2016 New York Film Festival »

Sieranevada

By Gary M. Kramer.  The 54th New York Film Festival showcases more than one hundred features, shorts, documentaries and experimental films September 30 – October 15. Many of the titles are the latest…

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The 2016 New York Film Festival Shorts Program »

I Turn To Jello

By Gary M. Kramer.  The New York Film Festival offers a range of fascinating short films, in five programs that showcase narrative shorts, international auteurs, genre stories, New York stories, and documentaries. The Narrative…

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The 35th International Sergio Amidei Award for Best Film Script »

Premio 1

By Simonetta Menossi.  The International Sergio Amidei Award for Best Film Script is a yearly event that takes place in Gorizia, Italy. The Award is entitled in the memory of Sergio Amidei (1904-1981),…

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Art Film Fest 2016: Footprints of Lynch »

Endorphine

By Robert Buckeye. Film festivals not only screen films we should see but also give us a reading of the field. At Art Film Fest this year, its first in Kosice after 23…

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Interview

The Purification of Rupture: A Conversation with Steven Shainberg »

Rupture 02

By John Duncan Talbird. In 2002, director Steven Shainberg won a special jury prize at the Sundance film festival for…

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Amit Masurkar on Newton: A Tribeca Film Festival Interview »

A film still from NEWTON. Photo credit: Swapnil S. Sonawane.

By Gary M. Kramer. Newton is co-writer/director Amit Masurkar’s nifty film about title character (a charismatic Rajkummar Rao), an…

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Six Windows onto Stefan Zweig: Farewell to Europe – An Interview with Maria Schrader »

Zweig 02

By Matthew Fullerton. Stefan Zweig: Farewell to Europe, Austria’s official entry for the Best Foreign Language Film for the 89th Academy…

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Taking Chances: An Interview with Doug Liman on The Wall »

Liman

By Jeremy Carr. Doug Liman’s lifelong interest in filmmaking first paid off with the breakout indie hit Swingers in…

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In Need of Russian Heroes: An Interview with Alexander Nevsky on Black Rose »

Moscow Heat (2003)

By Sergey Toymentsev. Alexander Nevsky is a Russian bodybuilder turned actor, writer, producer, and now director. Before coming to…

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Spiritual Questions: An Interview with Terrence Davies on A Quiet Passion »

Quiet 01

By Amir Ganjavie. It seems that there is no better subject than the life of Emily Dickinson to attract the…

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Another Legend: An Interview with Jason Connery on Tommy’s Honour »

Tommys 01

By Ali Moosavi. Sometimes it is difficult to establish yourself in an industry where your father has a legendary…

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A Hollywood Love Story: Daniel Raim and Lillian Michelson on Harold and Lillian »

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By David A. Ellis. Director Daniel Raim is the talent behind the movie Harold and Lillian – A Hollywood Love…

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Spotlight on the Modern City: An Interview with Pete Travis »

CityOfTinyLights_01

By Tom Ue. Pete Travis is an award-winning film and television and director. Before becoming a director, Pete was…

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Programming Shorts for Tribeca 2017 – An Interview with Sharon Badal »

Under an Arctic Sky

By Gary M. Kramer This year’s Tribeca Film Festival, held April 19-30, features 10 shorts programs curated by the…

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Into the Land of Salt and Fire: An Interview with Veronica Ferres »

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By Jeremy Carr. Since the late 1980s, German actress Veronica Ferres has appeared in dozens of films and television…

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MOST RECENT

  1. 24 Frames: A Sad Goodbye to Kiarostami (Cannes 2017 Review)
  2. Moody and Improved: Sofia Coppola’s The Beguiled (Cannes 2017 Review)
  3. Bright and Bleak: Wind River (Cannes 2017 Review)
  4. Super Troopers, or Super Dupers? Superheroes on World Screens, Edited by Rayna Denison and Rachel Mizsei-Ward
  5. Haneke Does Happy: Happy End (Cannes 2017 Review)
  6. A Caricature of Godard: Michel Hazanavicius’s Redoubtable (2017 Cannes Review)
  7. The 36th Istanbul Film Festival: Golden Tulip Scents in Istanbul
  8. Tribeca Talks: Alejandro González Iñárritu and Marina Abramović
  9. Be There Demons? A Dark Song Looks for the Answer
  10. The Splendid “Zone”: Tarkovsky’s Stalker Restoration by Mosfilm
  11. The Young Girls of Rochefort: Nearly Utopia
  12. International Films abound at the 27th Annual Washington Jewish Film Festival
  13. The Purification of Rupture: A Conversation with Steven Shainberg
  14. More Stupid Human Space Tricks – Alien: Covenant
  15. Eldritch Ecstasy!: Everything You Need to Know about Caltiki The Immortal Monster
  16. Amit Masurkar on Newton: A Tribeca Film Festival Interview
  17. Six Windows onto Stefan Zweig: Farewell to Europe – An Interview with Maria Schrader
  18. A look back at the Alien franchise, and why fans have reason to be cautiously optimistic about Alien: Covenant
  19. Taking Chances: An Interview with Doug Liman on The Wall
  20. A Tradition All Its Own – Forgotten British Film: Value and the Ephemeral in Postwar Cinema by Philip Gillett
  21. In Need of Russian Heroes: An Interview with Alexander Nevsky on Black Rose
  22. It’s a Family Affair: Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2
  23. Destination Unknown (Tay Garnett, 1932) at the Museum of Modern Art
  24. Film Scratches: The Underside of Desire – For Your Pleasure (2015)
  25. Film Scratches: Monuments to Guilt – Schuld Sind Alle (2014)
  26. Film Scratches: Synergy of the Eye and Ear – The Visual Music Films of Jing Wang and Harvey Goldman (2013-2015)
  27. Solidarity Against Oppression: Andrzej Wajda’s Afterimage
  28. The Function of Film Criticism at Any Time
  29. Esther C.M. Yau and Tony Williams on Hong Kong Neo-Noir
  30. A Love-Death Relationship: Obit.
  1. Tony Williams: This is a really good response, Chris. Quandt’s attack represents the worst of internet blogging...
  2. Christopher Sharrett: I will take ownership of my bad prose, caused, I think, by my hesitation in responding to...
  3. James Quandt: I would normally leave Prof. Sharrett’s troll-level fulminations stand as their own best...
  4. Martin Gottlieb: Tanner I loved your movie. I am an older guy in Atlanta. Would love to meet you… Here…...
  5. Jordan Young: Nice job, Chris. Intelligent writing about film is so hard to find I appreciate it all the more now....

Review

24 Frames

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…

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The Beguiled2

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…

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Wind River

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…

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Krrish (2006)

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…

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happyendhaneke

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…

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Redoubtable 02

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…

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Dark Song

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…

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Stalker 02

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…

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Roch 01

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)…

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Convenant 02

More Stupid Human Space Tricks – Alien: Covenant »

By Elias Savada. Thirty-eight years ago this month, the world experienced a horror like no other. Ridley Scott’s Alien intensely attacked worldwide audiences. No one wanted to swim into the ionosphere.…

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Caltiki 03

Eldritch Ecstasy!: Everything You Need to Know about Caltiki The Immortal Monster »

By Tony Williams. With one exception, this new release does live up to the second part of the above caption. Long revered by devotees of horror, science fiction, and its…

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Daybreak (1948)

A Tradition All Its Own – Forgotten British Film: Value and the Ephemeral in Postwar Cinema by Philip Gillett »

A Book Review by Tony Williams. Despite appearing in an independent press publication, this study deserves neither to be forgotten nor regarded as ephemeral since it represents a very distinctive…

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It’s a Family Affair: Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 »

By Elias Savada. Yeah, a lot of folks have been waiting for this one. Three years ago, the creative and marketing folks behind Guardians of the Galaxy tossed the big budget…

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Afterimage

Solidarity Against Oppression: Andrzej Wajda’s Afterimage »

By Alex Ramon. Two new films about iconic Polish artists screened at the Gdynia Film Festival, Poland’s primary showcase for its national cinema, last September. One was The Last Family (Ostatnia…

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OBIT 01

A Love-Death Relationship: Obit. »

By Elias Savada. This film is for me. I am a genealogist and death is a constant on my family tree. I read obituaries every day. I also peruse death…

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Citizen 01

Toppling a God: Citizen Jane|Battle for the City »

By Elias Savada. Making sense out of urban chaos was more than a dream for Jane Jacobs. It was a battle cry. Jacobs, a writer-journalist turned activist who passed away in…

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Entire 01

School’s Out, For Good: My Entire High School Sinking into the Sea »

By Elias Savada. The film is brief (76 minutes), but the title isn’t – My Entire High School Sinking into the Sea. Not as long (word wise) as 1991’s mouthful Night of…

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Ricardo Cortez The Maltese Falcon (1931)

Directed by Roy Del Ruth

Shown: Bebe Daniels, Ricardo Cortez

An Unsung Professional – The Magnificent Heel: The Life and Films of Ricardo Cortez by Dan Van Neste »

A Book Review by Tony Williams. Although countless books have appeared in past and present featuring stars, many who never achieved enduring fame are often unjustly neglected despite the fact…

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Truth and Fiction: Werner Herzog’s Salt and Fire and Queen of the Desert »

By John Duncan Talbird. It’s hard to know why Werner Herzog still makes fiction films. He clearly loves to travel to strange and wonderful places as part of his work, to…

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Tommy 01

Par for the Course: Tommy’s Honour »

By Elias Savada. Both old school and old-fashioned come together in style and substance in Tommy’s Honour, Jason Connery’s passable historical look at golf. The drab (in a good, yet unexciting…

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Hobart Bosworth – Silent Cinema’s Sea Wolf: Behind the Door (1919) from Flicker Alley »

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By Tony Williams. Ever since seeing that unforgettable still in Kevin Brownlow’s The War, the West, and the Wilderness (1979), the grim-visage…

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Dividing Lives: Petar Valchanov and Kristina Grozeva’s Glory »

Stefan Denolyubov as Tzanko Petrov in Petar Valchanov & Kristina

By Devapriya Sanyal. At first glance it may seem that Glory, the new Bulgarian film directed by Petar Valchanov and Kristina Grozeva, belongs…

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Tough Onscreen and Off: The Lives of Robert Ryan by J.R. Jones »

The Set-Up (1949)

A Book Review by Irv Slifkin. In The Lives of Robert Ryan (Wesleyen University Press, 2015), Chicago film critic J.R. Jones points…

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If Only We Could Live for Today: After the Storm »

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By Elias Savada. The actual typhoon in After the Storm is more than a physical catastrophe. It’s a powerful metaphor for an…

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“The Road Leads to Nowhere” – Utopian Television: Rossellini, Watkins, and Godard Beyond Cinema by Michael Cramer »

Jean-Luc Godard, Numero Deux (1975)

A Book Review by Tony Williams. Last week, a friend and fellow reviewer Chris Sharrett told me about his experiences at the…

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De Palma’s Raising Cain: Re-cut and Revisited »

Cain 2

By Jeremy Carr. Since the release of Noah Baumbach’s 2015 documentary on Brian De Palma, the legendary filmmaker, who has for decades…

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Performing Gender and Self: Anup Singh’s Qissa »

Qissa 01

By Devapriya Sanyal. Qissa (“fable”), Anup Singh’s second directorial venture (2013; released in India in 2015), deals with many issues at the same time, with…

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Frantz and the Gentle Art of Forgiveness »

frantz_01

By Elias Savada. Let’s refresh: the films of French writer-director François Ozon tend to be sly, unsettling, and daring observations of the human…

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Shopping for Ghosts: Olivier Assayas’ Personal Shopper »

Personal 02

By Elias Savada. As I watched Personal Shopper, I wondered if this new, mostly English-language film from French filmmaker Olivier Assayas was a…

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More Than Plays on Film: Marcel Pagnol’s “Marseille Trilogy” Restored by Janus Films »

César (1936)

By Christopher Weedman. Janus Films’ stunning 4K restoration of the “Marseille Trilogy” by the esteemed Marcel Pagnol is one of the essential…

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The Controversy of Gamal Abdel Nasser in Nasser’s Republic, The Making of Modern Egypt »

Nasser 1

By Neila Driss. Michal Goldman’s documentary, Nasser’s Republic, The Making of Modern Egypt (2016), was screened on November 20th during the 38th…

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Hugs vs. Handshakes: Life’s Battles in Donald Cried »

FILM-DONALD-REVIEW-ADV17

By Elias Savada. The indie movie Donald Cried joins a growing number of feature films based on a short subject (among my…

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Keep Telling Yourself, It’s Not a Vacation – Kong: Skull Island »

kong-skull-island feat

By Elias Savada. Kong: Skull Island, Hollywood’s latest outing for its furry Eighth Wonder of the World, has arrived in an energetic, well-mounted,…

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Well-Wrought and Old-Fashioned: Robin Wood’s The Apu Trilogy (New Edition) »

Apu 01

A Book Review by John Duncan Talbird. The film critic Robin Wood (1931-2009) was one of those writers who helped the general public…

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Ready, Ink, Go!: 24 Hour Comic »

24 Hour Comic 01

By Elias Savada. Ever wonder what it’s like to spend a long day in the life with a comic book artist? Or…

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Get Out: Belated Misjudgments »

Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner (1967)

By Christopher Sharrett. I was curious about Jordan Peele’s film Get Out. I heard rumors that it was a riposte to Guess…

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Just Do It!: Get Out »

Get Out 01

By Elias Savada. You don’t need to be creative when making a low budget horror film. They can suck, yet are usually profitable…

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A Big Crumble: The Great Wall »

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By Elias Savada. So, let’s get to the big question you’re asking your mirror. Is Matt Damon’s new fantasy action movie the…

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Condition: Cloudy – A Patch of Fog »

Patch 01

By Elias Savada. Irish director Michael Lennox has been to the Oscars – for his 2014 film Boogaloo and Graham, a heartwarming comedy…

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The Passion of James Baldwin: I Am Not Your Negro »

NOT 01

By John Duncan Talbird. On the police brutality episode of ABC’s sitcom Black-ish, the teenaged son, Junior (Marcus Scribner), reads out loud from…

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Family and Transition: This is Everything – Gigi Gorgeous »

Gigi 01

By Kate Hearst. Over the course of forty-plus years, Barbara Kopple has made her documentaries with one focus: to be truthful to…

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The Heart of Fuller’s Marauders: Film is Like a Battleground – Samuel Fuller’s War Movies by Marsha Gordon »

Merrill's Marauders (1962)

A Book Review by Tony Williams. During his lifetime, Samuel Fuller was fortunate enough to receive acclaim from monographs and articles dedicated…

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A Conquering Female Spirit in The Brand New Testament »

BRAND 01

By Kate Hearst. First screened at the Cannes Film Festival in 2015, and recently released in the United States, Belgian director Jaco Van…

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Out of the Past: Jack Garfein’s Something Wild on Criterion »

Wild 01

By Tony Williams. Something Wild (1961) has nothing to do with the similarly titled well-known 1986 Jonathan Demme film. In fact before…

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Lars-Martin Sorenson’s Censorship of Japanese Films during the U.S. Occupation of Japan: The Cases of Yasujiro Ozu and Akira Kurosawa »

Stray Dogs

A Book Review by Matthew Fullerton.  Lars-Martin Sorenson is probably best known to cinephiles for his interview on censorship during the American…

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The Cacophony of History: Cinéma Militant by Paul Douglas Grant »

Le Traîneau-échelle (1971)

A Book Review by John Duncan Talbird. Paul Douglas Grant’s new book Cinéma Militant: Political Filmmaking & May 1968 (Wallflower Press, 2016) is…

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Hello, Daleks – Good to Have You Back: Dr. Who The Power of the Daleks Animated Restoration on DVD »

Power 01

By Tony Williams. 50 years ago I watched the one and only BBC TV transmission of The Power of the Daleks (November…

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The New Southern Gothic: Loving, Jeff Nichols, and the Southern Artist in the 21st Century »

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By Will Tomford. As I watched Loving come to an end, I thought to myself, please don’t have an epilogue text. An…

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DVD as Reference Library: His Girl Friday on Criterion »

The Front Page (1931)

By Tony Williams. Since companies have decided to issue features accompanying DVD reissues of films available on VHS and Laserdisc in the…

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Cat People: Horror, Necessity, and Creative Collaboration »

Cat People

By Jeremy Carr.  Who gets the credit for Cat People (1942)? Is it first-time producer Val Lewton, who though generally overlooked in…

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It’s Complicated: Joss Whedon and Race by Mary Ellen Iatropoulos and Lowery A. Woodall III »

From Serenity (2005)

A Book Review by Jessica Baxter. Let’s face it. White liberals are having a “woke” moment that is shamefully long overdue. Growing…

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Equality with a Discursive, Televisual Face: TV Socialism by Aniko Imre »

From the 2010 Documentary Exporting Raymond, in which a US sitcom creator struggle to adapt his show in Russia

A Book Review by Tony Williams. In Robert Aldrich’s Kiss Me Deadly (1955) the enigmatic voice of Dr. Soberin delivers one of…

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Jackie: Alone in Oblivion »

jackie-01

By Christopher Sharrett. The title to Pablo Larrain’s film Jackie might be more sensibly called The Last Days of Kennedy; the title…

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Exploring Cracks in the Tarmac: John Huston’s The Asphalt Jungle on Criterion »

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By Tony Williams. For the new set of John Huston’s bleak 1950 film noir The Asphalt Jungle (1950), Criterion includes a cover…

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Authenticity in Many Forms: 20th Century Women »

20th-century

By Jude Warne.  Perhaps there are no two greater examples of cinematic contrast during this year’s Oscar season than Damien Chazelle’s La La…

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The Allure of a Stone Heart: Verhoeven’s Elle »

elle-01

By Elias Savada. There is a brazen, dangerous atmosphere floating about the French-language feature Elle, a dramatic thriller with much to admire…

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Bridging the Ideological Gap: Reform Cinema in Iran by Blake Atwood »

A Taste of Cherry (1997)

A Book Review by Ali Moosavi. I have always thought that for a deeper understanding of Iranian films, one has to have a…

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Near Silent Complexities of The Quiet Man on Olive Films »

quiet-man-01

By Tony Williams. The Quiet Man (1952) is another excellent addition to that fine series of DVDs released by Olive Films in its…

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Compleat Welles, in “Drops of Sorrow”: Macbeth on Olive Films »

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By Tony Williams. Humorously referred to by one academic as “Shakespeare Rides Again” due to Macbeth’s origins in Herbert J. Yates’s Republic…

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Mifune: The Last Samurai – Overshadowing His Tribute »

mifune-01

By Christopher Weedman. Released by Strand Releasing and narrated by actor Keanu Reeves, director Steven Okazaki’s new feature-length documentary Mifune: The Last…

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Beyond the Valley of the Dolls: Vulgarity as Satire »

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By Christopher Sharrett. The Criterion Collection’s release on Blu-ray of Russ Meyer’s Beyond the Valley of the Dolls might bring accusations of…

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The Undersung Heroes of Music: Soundbreaking (A DOC NYC Review) »

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By Jude Warne. “Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain.” –Idiom of recording artist indicating the producer What defines a quality…

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Before and After the Wall – Re-Imagining DEFA: East German Cinema in Its National and Transnational Contexts »

Gojko Mitic in White Wolves (1969)

A Book Review by Tony Williams. Berghahn is known for its publication of excellent books on German Cinema within its catalog. This…

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Being 17: Sexual Awakening and Race in the Hautes-Pyrénées »

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by Kate Hearst. A renaissance of teen films about sexuality has energized French cinema in recent years with works by Abdellatif Kechiche,…

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Life, Celebrated: Arrival is a Must See »

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By Elias Savada. In Hollywood, when you hear the words “alien invasion,” you might expect any manner of shoot-’em-up movies like Independence Day (1996)…

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A Lovely Loss of Control: The Love Witch »

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By Jessica Baxter. You could never accuse writer/director Anna Biller of masking her influences. She has, to date, painstakingly created two films…

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The Coming-of-Age Mosaic of Don’t Call Me Son »

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By John Duncan Talbird. We open Don’t Call Me Son on Pierre (astonishing newcomer Naomi Nero), pleasantly drunk or high, beautiful and…

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Blind Chance: Free Will in 4D? »

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By William Repass.  In Kieślowski’s 1981[1] metaphysical/political triptych, Blind Chance, the subtlest of details cut across three alternate storylines to triangulate a…

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Too Much Dull in the Dill: The Pickle Recipe »

pickle

By Elias Savada. I know a lot of people who would love The Pickle Recipe, a low budget feature (made lower by…

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Features

United 93: A Social Conscience and the Ease of Historicism (A 10th Anniversary Retrospective) »

Director Paul Greengrass prepares for a take.

By David Ryan. Before United 93 opened ten years ago, the film’s previews were greeted with varying degrees of stress and grief.…

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All the Fire: The use of sexual imagery as a way for attracting cinema audiences in 1950s America »

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By Anthony Uzarowski. The 1950s are often seen as the time of Hollywood’s greatest splendour, yet the reality of the time was…

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Star Wars Episode VII: Feminism from “Far, Far Away” »

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By Sotiris Petridis. Introduction The Star Wars saga is an internal and important part of popular culture since its first filmic text…

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Cannibalized Chaos: Iago, The Joker and the “Good Sport” of Postmodernism »

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By Richmond B. Adams. During a conversation approximately one-third of the way through The Dark Knight (2008), Bruce Wayne (Christian Bale) expresses…

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The Sentinel Excavated »

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By Christopher Sharrett. I use the word “excavated” in my title not because the 1977 horror film The Sentinel , directed by…

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The Best and the Most Overrated of 2015 »

The Assassin: Frustrating or rewarding?

By Film International. The editors’ Top 10 and Overrated 10 include films that were released in the editors’ respective regions during 2015.…

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CGI and the Audience: Things Better Left Unsaid »

The Show of Shows

By Fred Wagner. The Show of Shows (2015), a recently released documentary made out of archive footage shows the lost world of…

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The Battle for Fair Remuneration: A Slovenian Drama with International Consequences »

Odklop

By Edgar Tijhuis. Sometimes it seems like time stood still in Slovenia. In 2009 Variety magazine reported about a “royalty battle” in…

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“All My Treasures”: On Ingrid Bergman – In Her Own Words (2015) »

Ingrid Featured

By Tony Williams. Critic-director Stig Bjorkman, well known for his studies on directors such as Woody Allen and Ingmar Bergman, has made…

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I, Shakespeare by Anonymous and Last Will. & Testament »

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By David Ryan. Rewriting history is a common academic enterprise, and crafting Elizabethan history – particularly Shakespearean biography – is composed recursively. Though…

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(((1973)))

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Kurt Vonnegut Hunter Thompson Norman Mailer Tom Wolfe William Burroughs Jonathan Miller William Burroughs Jr Jacob Bronowski Robert Hughes Bob Woodward Carl…

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Traces of Postindian Survivance: Two Short Films by Jeff Barnaby »

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By John Garland Winn. Jeff Barnaby, a Mi’kmaq First Nations director, was four years old when the Quebec Provincial Police raided his…

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Rereading The Wire: police procedural, social games and the magic of blood »

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By Rajko Radović. Blood has been shed on the asphalt at night. We see it in close-up as thin red lines spreading…

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Madam Secretary: The Happy Family in Time of War »

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By Christopher Sharrett. When I first took note of the television series Madam Secretary (2014-), I assumed it was a sort of…

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Guy Ritchie’s The Man from U.N.C.L.E. and the Politics of Escapism »

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By Richard Grigg. Director Guy Ritchie’s 2015 film The Man from U.N.C.L.E. is of course inspired by the U.S. television series of…

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

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By Ramin S. Khanjani. For many avid followers of Iranian cinema across the world, the experience of this national cinema justifiably doesn’t…

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

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By William Repass. In the thematic arc formed by Fellini’s body of work, La dolce vita  (1960) can be said to represent…

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The Way, Way Back: An Appreciation »

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By Christopher Sharrett. Some months ago I saw The Way, Way Back (2013) and was taken by it enough to buy the…

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Peter Bogdanovich: The Comedy Smuggler »

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By James Knight. This August will see the US theatrical release of She’s Funny That Way, the latest feature from Peter Bogdanovich.…

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Mise-en-scène and the Rebirth of Film »

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By Tom Silva. Film is a living thing and so it faces an unending series of deaths. Like the mythic hero in…

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

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By Robert K. Lightning. Lovers that demonstrate both spiritual affinity and spiritual equality have long been popular in middle-class entertainment. Repartee has…

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

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By Geoffrey Fox. The credits roll over a black-and-white newsreel of missiles and men parading before an austere Leonid Brezhnev in Moscow…

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Discovering Mary Pickford »

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By Tony Williams. The title of this article has a double meaning. It is primarily a reworking of that lavishly illustrated and…

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

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By Benjamin Bergholtz. “Each single manifestation of the culture industry inescapably reproduces human beings as what the whole has made them.” (Adorno…

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

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By Christopher Sharrett. Ronit and Shlomi Elkabetz’s Gett: The Trial of Viviane Amsalem is a work of such staggering importance that its…

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

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By Daniel Garrett. Some old films have a special appeal. They might not be excellent or particularly beloved objects, and yet they…

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

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By Francesco Pascuzzi. Already with the film’s title, Giuseppe Tornatore’s The Unknown Woman (La Sconosciuta, 2005) sets out to toy with the…

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Un Flic: Melville and the Ambiguities »

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By Tony Williams. On initial release, Jean-Pierre Melville’s Un Flic (1972) disappointed many and has remained in critical limbo to the present…

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

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

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

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By Elizabeth Mizon and Lee Salter. Digital media technologies are full of paradoxes. On one hand they are said to open up…

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

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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 »

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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 »

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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 »

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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 »

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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 »

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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 »

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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 »

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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 »

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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 »

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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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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…

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All God’s Children (Toti copiii domnului, 2012)

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…

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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.…

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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…

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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…

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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…

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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…

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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).…

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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…

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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…

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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…

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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…

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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…

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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…

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