Recent Features
40 Nights at the Movies (in the Comfort of Your Home): The Franchise

Back by popular demand! Recommendations from "40 Nights at the Movies" will keep you, your dog and your elephant glued to the couch for months.

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Ray Harryhausen’s Legacy: Monster Movies, Special Effects, and the Sci-Fi Fanzine

All of Harryhausen’s invocations of mythical antiquity deserve attention and study, regardless of their fidelity to ancient sources, and despite (or perhaps because of) the rise of 'New Hollywood' and the summer blockbuster.

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‘Victoria’ Director on How He Made the Most Thrilling “Crazy Little Dog” of the Year

Sebastian Schipper has created a single-take marvel that has won awards, invigorated young audiences, and is finally hitting Stateside.

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Order, Chaos, and Faith: The Themes and Form of ‘The Dark Knight’

Originally a story about the perils of combating organised crime, The Dark Knight makes several radical departures that frequently result in the main characters being split among tonally disparate contexts whose relevance to each other is not always immediately evident.

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A Symphony in Three Parts: Breaking Down the ‘Steve Jobs’ Score with Composer Daniel Pemberton

The composer for the new Danny Boyle/Aaron Sorkin collaboration Steve Jobs offers a rundown of what it took to put his complex score together for the film.

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Winona Ryder Talks With PopMatters About the ‘Experimenter’

Winona Ryder speaks to PopMatters about Experimenter, aging in Hollywood, and why she's the only actress who doesn't want to direct.

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Litanies of Death and Desire: The Works of Alain Robbe-Grillet

Often exploring the haunted depths of dissolute sexuality, author and filmmaker Alain Robbe-Grillet reframes the ideas of longing and desire through his usual exercises in repetitious narratives.

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Exploring the Morality of Romance within ‘Brief Encounter’, 60 Years On

If rom-coms are the easiest way to zippily engage with the caprices of love and still find a happy ending, then romantic tragedies show the extent to which love can be ruinous, challenging, and largely unfulfilling.

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Revisiting ‘Girlfriends’: A Forgotten Film of Second-Wave Feminism

Stanley Kubrick was right. Girlfriends is one of the finest American films of the ‘70s.

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Madness. Shame. Humiliation: Richard Elfman on Growing Up Absurd

In 1980, Richard Elfman released a very strange movie called Forbidden Zone. No one saw it. At least not in theaters. Today it's one of the best-known underground films around.

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Trapped in the Negative Zone: The Fantastic Four on Film

The dust has cleared on the fourth attempt to bring The Fantastic Four to the big screen. Why is this team of comic characters so important? What keeps going so horribly wrong?

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What Happened to Truth When Indiana Jones Became an Adjective?

Indiana Jones was born to be a cult object. What does that mean nearly four decades later, when prestigious institutions have embraced this artifice?

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21 Oct 2015 // 2:00 AM

Deconstructing the Avengers: Bad Robot! Language Co-Opted

Like Joss Whedon himself, Ultron refuses to play fair: The bad robot in this film does not stand for the “shit” at all.

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“A Kind of Liberation”: An Interview with Małgorzata Szumowska About ‘Body/Ciało’

At the London Film Festival, Alex Ramon talks to Małgorzata Szumowska about her new film, Body/Ciało, honoured at this year's Berlin and Gdynia Festivals.

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16 Oct 2015 // 1:02 AM

Deconstructing the Avengers: Language Transcended ... Almost

Black Widow’s reputation for cajolery, subterfuge, coaxing, and subtle persuasion endow her with a silver tongue that almost transcends Hulk’s chaos and unbridled, unreasoning emotion.

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12 Oct 2015 // 1:02 AM

Deconstructing the Avengers: Good and Bad Language

From the very outset Age of Ultron was weighed down by a lot of artistic, cultural, and commercial expectations: You don't take care of this particular problem by adding more weight.

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Rooting for Harry Lime: ‘The Third Man’ As Morally Ambiguous Heterotopia

The Third Man's film-noir vision of a fractured postwar landscape creates an ‘other space’ (heterotopia), through which its moral realities and boundaries still resonate.

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5 Oct 2015 // 1:30 AM

The Day Sarah Records Died

I first loved and admired Sarah Records not because it had begun, but because it had ended. It seemed to me ending things took much more courage, strength and self-discipline than beginning them.

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Holding Death Hostage: Human Enigma in ‘The Order of Death’

Hugh Fleetwood's story of murder and guilt evades the clear resolutions of mystery-narratives, opting for a disturbing disquisition on human enigma.

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In France They Kiss on Netflix

What does the French version of Netflix look like? How much gratuitous nudity can you expect to find in the French Netflix catalogue? Isn’t “French movie” code for “mild erotica”, anyway?

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More Recent Features
//Mixed media

Because Blood Is Drama: Considering Carnage in Video Games and Other Media

// Moving Pixels

"It's easy to dismiss blood and violence as salacious without considering why it is there, what its context is, and what it might communicate.

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