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Finding My Film Legs: Sean Ellis on Anthropoid

By Paul Risker. British filmmaker Sean Ellis’ Anthropoid (2016) tells the story of Operation Anthropoid, a daring chapter of the Second World War whose objective was the assassination of the Nazi third in command, SS Obergruppenführer Reinhard Heydrich. While the Second World War is a dark chapter of history that haunts our present and future […]

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Q-ing Up Some Comedy from India: Qaushiq Mukherjee and Naman Ramachandran on Brahman Naman

By Paul Risker. Indian musician, composer and producer A. R. Rahman has said: “Comedy is a universal language. I grew up watching Nagesh, Surilirajan, Thenga Srinivasan and S.V. Shekhar’s comedies. And, of course, Charlie Chaplin! These artists are so blessed: they can make other people happy.” One of the gifts of cinema is that it can […]

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Looking Death in the Face: Iben Hjejle on Dicte – Crime Reporter

By Paul Risker. There is an ironic thread connecting the childhood of Danish actress Iben Hjejle to her adult self. Describing herself as having an obsession with death as a child, she now finds herself cast in the lead role in a crime series caught in death’s shadow. Prior to Dicte – Crime Reporter (2012- ), […]

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The Grisly Bare Bones of Triple-9

By Paul Risker. “Bare bones thrown to a hungry dog…do nothing to appease its hunger.” – Thich Nhat Hanh, Thundering Silence: Commentaries on the Sutra on Knowing the Better Way to Catch a Snake (2009). On the surface it may feel strange to see such a philosophical thought in a film review of John Hillcoat’s superficial heist […]

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A Question of the Medium: Scott of the Antarctic (1949)

By Paul Risker. Humanity shares a love-hate relationship with the planet. Our ongoing rape and exploitation of it has been reciprocated, in a way, by nature’s propensity for devastating violence, none of which has either been conscious or discriminatory. Rather deliberate cruelty is the preserve of humanity. The Antarctic continent and the celestial reaching Mount Everest […]

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Out of the (Garden) House: Rachel Tunnard on Adult Life Skills

By Paul Risker. Adult Life Skills (2016) is filmmaker Rachel Tunnard’s feature debut, a creative expansion of her earlier award winning short film Emotional Fusebox (2014). With an editing background in both shorts and features, Tunnard’s foray into writing and directing has been the recipient of immediate success. While Emotional Fusebox was nominated for Best British […]

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A New Voice for Cinema: Chloé Leriche and Jacques Newashish on Before the Streets

By Paul Risker. Canadian filmmaker Chloé Leriche recently found herself involved in the Wapikoni mobile program, where she mentored documentary filmmaking made by natives that inspired her own work and led to her feature debut, Avant Les Rues (Before the Streets, 2016). Before the Streets is not only a first milestone step for its director, but as the first narrative […]

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For the Love of the Tale: Matteo Garrone on Tale of Tales

By Paul Risker. Matteo Garrone’s Tale of Tales (2015), an adaptation of Italian poet Giambattista Basile’s collection of fairy tales Pentamerone (1634, The Tale of Tales otherwise known as Entertainment for Little Ones) could be seen as the filmmaker’s affectionate ode to storytelling. He journeys deep into the past to adapt early versions of what have now […]

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“Spielberg Doesn’t Know Everything”: Neil Marshall on the Lifelong Education of Filmmaking

By Paul Risker. Since his feature debut Dog Soldiers (2002), Neil Marshall has developed a career across film and television, directing the action and genre pictures The Descent (2005), Doomsday (2008) and Centurion (2010), while directing episodes of Hannibal (2013-15), Black Sails (2014-), Constantine (2014-15) and Game of Thrones (2011-). As executive producer of Ed Evers-Swindell […]

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Park Row: Spotlight’s Other Forefather

By Paul Risker. It would be all too easy to label Tom McCarthy’s Spotlight (2015) as this generation’s All the President’s Men (1976). Alan J. Pakula’s film, based on the Watergate scandal, featuring Washington Post journalists Bob Woodward (Robert Redford) and Carl Bernstein (Dustin Hoffman), has the status of a modern classic and stands as […]

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