Reworking and Immersion: AFI European Union Film Showcase 2020

Grimm re-edit (Alex van Warmerdam) By Gary M. Kramer. The AFI European Union Film Showcase, being held virtually at December 2-20, offers an eclectic assortment of nearly 50 films. Here is rundown of a half dozen impressive features screening at this year’s fest. Writer/director Jurgis Matulevicius’s auspicious debut, Isaac, […]

Going Virtual: Selections from Philadelphia Film Festival 2020

À L’Abordag (Guillaume Brac, France, 2020) By Gary M. Kramer. The Philadelphia Film Festival, now in its 29th year, offered more than 100 films, shorts, and documentaries online, with select programming at the Film Society’s drive-in theater. There were some great documentaries and feature films from around the world screening […]

Virtual Discoveries: NYFF 2020

Stump the Guesser (Guy Maddin, 2020) By Gary M. Kramer. There were some interesting discoveries, documentaries, and revivals screening at this year’s New York Film Festival. Here are a handful of notable titles that played at this year’s virtual fest. One of the highlights is the pairing two playful and […]

TIFF 2020: Short Cuts

By Gary M. Kramer. The Short Cuts programs, a staple of the Toronto International Film Festival, showcases five programs of new work by established and up and coming filmmakers. Each program has a loose theme and offers a mix of narrative, animated, and documentary shorts. Here is a rundown of […]

Back with 40 More: AFI Shorts 2019

By Gary M. Kramer. There are 40 shorts screening in six programs (as well as in front of features) at this year’s AFI Fest presented by Audi. Here are ten highlights from the festival, which unspools November 14-21 in Los Angeles. Sin Cielo is writer-director Jianna S. Maarten’s quietly powerful […]

Three from the Open City Documentary Festival 2019

By Ali Moosavi. Three interesting documentaries screened at the Open City Documentary Festival in London, September 4-10, 2019. Sergei Loznitsa, the distinguished Ukrainian director known for films such as A Gentle Creature (2017) and Donbass (2018), in fact started off as a documentary filmmaker. In his return, Trial (2018), he has put […]

Experimentation in NYC: NYFF Shorts 2019

By Gary M. Kramer. Two shorts programs at this year’s New York Film Festival are designed to provoke audiences. This is a welcome approach to short films, where the format encourages experimentation. As many of the films here attest, short films can yield some strong emotional responses by not following […]

Crises in Detail: AFI Docs 2019

By Gary M. Kramer. At the 2019 AFI Docs Film Festival this year, five provocative shorts and features tackled important topics ranging from the drug crisis and immigration to the creationism debate and disability issues. Here is a rundown of these highlights from this year’s fest. Elivia Shaw’s short, The […]