Recent Features
‘The Sacrament’, ‘The Unbelievers’ and Religious Imperialism

From cult leader Jim Jones to scientist Richard Dawkins, once in a rare while, Hollywood gets a religious idea, or an idea about religion, right.

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Coolness and Connoisseurship in Jim Jarmusch’s ‘Only Lovers Left Alive’

Jim Jarmusch's Only Lovers Left Alive reimagines the vampire myth in the context of intellectual philistinism.

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‘Boyhood’ and the Transcendence of the Everyday

Boyhood returns to the view that originated with Italian Neorealism: documenting everyday life is the biggest spectacle one could capture on film.

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Enough with the Biopic: A Re-Examination of Cinema’s Least Interesting Genre

Life-spanning biopics are still the ultimate Oscar bait in 2014. Here’s hoping that no one will be biting in the future.

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The 10 Best of ESPN’s 30 for 30

On the occasion of 30 for 30's fifth anniversary, ESPN Films has released a 100-Film Gift Set. And on that occasion, a list of the 10 best 30 for 30 films.. so far.

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The Best Documentaries of 2014

As the best of 2014's documentaries find new ways to tell stories, they are also the year's best films.

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Crisis and Continuity: Reliving the Superhero Flicks of 2014

Superhero cinema had a watershed year in 2014, where it saw its fully postmodern realization. Films like X-Men: Days of Future Past not only interrogate genre tropes; they also upend them.

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2014: A Most Mediocre Year

The odds of discovering gems like Boyhood felt thinner in 2014 than they have for quite some time.

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The Best Films of 2014

Spanning a Truffaut-indebted magnum opus to a comeback vehicle for Michael Keaton, this collection of films is an eclectic representation of 2014's best.

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The Best Female Film Performances of 2014

The world of cinema in 2014 is blessed with a host of performances by female actors at the top of their game. From zany sci-fi to lamentations on aging, the performances on these list will follow the viewer long after she leaves the theater.

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The Best Male Film Performances of 2014

Cinemagoers in 2014 were given the opportunity to be captivated by tyrannical drum instructors, troubled Olympians, and ersatz superheroes.

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‘The Interview’ and Free Speech: A Plausible Alternative

Sony’s cancellation of the 25 December screening of The Interview may not be the free speech catastrophe that it's being made out to be.

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‘American Interior’: A Multimedia Tale of a Welsh Vision Quest

Gruff Rhys' innovative, multi-platform narrative unfolds the beguiling and intriguing narrative of an enigmatic Welshman seeking out his kind... in America.

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A Healthy Dose of Darkness: The Best Film Scores of 2014

The year 2014 saw classic composer/director teams hit new highs, as well as a considerable dark streak take over the world of film scoring.

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PopMatters Film Preview: December 2014

This is it, the final push for the 2014 Awards Season, which includes some big names, some Academy almosts, and subjects as diverse as snipers, orphans, civil rights, and paintings of children with big, sad eyes.

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The Politics of Performance: Reverend Billy and the Church of Stop Shopping

Like many avant-gardists before them, Reverend Billy and the Church of Stop Shopping view their performances not as an artistic practice or profession, but as an orientation toward life.

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25 Nov 2014 // 2:20 AM

May the Force (of Narrativity) Be With You

The Star Wars universe is a microcosmical example of the long-standing battle over the necessity of narrativity in shaping our lives.

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Skype Dates and Ski Jumps: Johannes Kuhnke on the Role of a Lifetime

Force Majeure is a brutal film, and not just because of the avalanche. Johannes Kuhnke stretched himself for this awards season buzz pick, and often in very surprising ways.

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Modern Romance and Skype Sex: An Interview with Kate Lyn Sheil

Many films this year have dealt with how the internet and social media has changed the romantic landscape, and Kate Lyn Sheil, star of The Heart Machine, has more than a few thoughts of her own on the subject.

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Jean-Luc Godard and the 3D Dog: An Actress’ Tale

Starring in a film directed by Jean-Luc Godard is an intimidating prospect (especially when it's in 3D), but not only did Héloise Godet rise to the challenge, she's starting to get rave reviews of her own.

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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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