Few Wounds Examined: Ramona S. Diaz’s A Thousand Cuts

A Thousand Cuts doesn’t grapple with such global issues as much as it name checks them.” By Thomas Puhr. A sobering reminder that 21st-century demagoguery is not limited to the West, Ramona S. Diaz’s A Thousand Cuts (2020) focuses on two diametrically-opposed figures: Rodrigo Duterte, current President of the Philippines, […]

Characters in the “Stocks”: Paydirt

Paydirt feels more like fast food than haute cuisine.” By Ali Moosavi. Christian Sesma, the writer-director of Paydirt, has certainly an interesting resume. Already a successful restaurateur from Palm Springs, he also made “HBO’s first under-a-million-dollar action film acquired in over a decade.” The resume also informs us he has made a […]

Now, More Than Ever: The Fight

By Elias Savada. Though filmed pre-pandemic, there is a shared sense of heroics here, be they legal or medical professions engaging an overwhelming enemy.” For most of you, The Fight starts off with a gag reflex – the swearing in of Donald Trump as the 45th president of the United […]

Debuting with the Visceral: Nick Rowland’s The Shadow of Violence

By Ali Moosavi. Rowland and his cinematographer Piers McGrail provide some respite from the claustrophobic and washed-out colour scenes of violence….” It is something of a dichotomy that such a beautiful, picturesque country as Ireland has been the setting for so many films with themes of violence, war, revolution and […]

A Passionless Pageant: Bruno Dumont’s Joan of Arc (2019)

By Jeremy Carr. A film more arduous and cumbersome than it is deferential and imaginative.” Aside from Carl Theodor Dreyer’s 1928 paragon, The Passion of Joan of Arc, the story of the revered “Maid of Orléans” has been told dozens of times by some of cinema’s most celebrated filmmakers, from […]

Portrait of a Singular Artist – Chantal Akerman Retrospective Handbook

A Book Review by Thomas Puhr. If the likes of Kubrick or Bergman have more or less been deified, surely she belongs in this secular pantheon.” If, like me, The Criterion Collection and Eclipse Series – through their pristine releases of Jeanne Dielman, 23, quai du Commerce, 1080 Bruxelles (1975), […]

Sugary Serial: Dwight H. Little’s Bloodstone (Arrow Video)

1988’s Bloodstone comes off as pleasingly old-fashioned – fleeting side-boob excepted.” By Rod Lott. After 1981’s Raiders of the Lost Ark rolled over the competition and into the stratosphere of pop-culture consciousness, dozens of rip-offs followed. Some were imitations; others, parodies – and as far as I know, only Brett Stimely starred […]

Airbnb Done Wrong: The Rental

By Elias Savada. It’s another hung-out-to-dry whodunit…in which you never really learn whodunit.” Will The Rental do more damage to the home sharing business than the Covid-19 virus already has? Probably not, but this cautionary tale – an adequate variant of the Cabin in the Woods horror sub-genre, might cause […]

Ghosts of War Gone Awry

If it feels like Final Destination at war, that’s because Bress was a writer on some of those popular films. By Elias Savada. I was hoping the new film from Eric Bress, his first solo directorial effort after 2004’s lightly entertaining science fiction thriller The Butterfly Effect – which he […]