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Friday, March 7 2014

‘The Long Day Closes’ Recollects Memory and Childhood in Constant Motion

One of cinema's most resonant and timeless works, Terence Davies's second film recreates childhood dreams and memories within which any viewer can situate themselves.


Thursday, March 6 2014

Why Would Criterion Want Alfred Hitchcock’s ‘Foreign Correspondent’ in Its Collection?

Yes, this is perhaps one of the most efficient entries in the Hitchcockian subgenre of “every-man trapped in an extraordinary situation”, but he would go on to direct much better films.


Take Away Its Passport, a Zombie Is Still a Zombie

Before you can say, “Man, can’t those former Soviet Bloc republics do anything right?” Code Red gets a whole lot of zombie mayhem going on.


Wednesday, March 5 2014

Social Satire, Italian Style

In Garibaldi's Lovers, Garibaldi, and others from Italy's past, looks on from the afterlife and mourns for the state of his country.


Tuesday, March 4 2014

‘Cutie and the Boxer’ Is an Impossibly Romantic, if Not Always Happy, Love Story

This is an engaging biographical documentary that’s all performance and a romance film that’s filled with endless pain.


‘Free Fall’ Feels Very Familiar

In many ways, Blue is the Warmest Color is everything Free Fall should have been.


Naomi Watts Gives a Worthy Performance in ‘Diana’

If there is but one thing in Diana worth our time, it is watching the extraordinary Naomi Watts as she respectfully portrays Princes Di.


Monday, March 3 2014

The Pervert’s Guide to Ideology

Come eat from the trashcan of ideology with Slavoj Zizek.


Friday, February 28 2014

Scenes from the Deadpan Life: Aki Kaurismäki’s ‘La Vie De Boheme’

This deadpan gem betrays a surprising warmth beneath its wry exterior. Simply put, it's one of cinema's richest and most compassionate tragicomedies.


Thursday, February 27 2014

‘Haunter’ Delivers for Ghost Story Inversion

While many horror films are carried by deftly composed cinematography, Haunter benefits from a thoughtful script, with complicated turns that keep the audience guessing.


Tony Leung’s ‘The Grandmaster’ Is Beautifully Alone

Wong Kar Wai’s overkill kung fu epic about Bruce Lee’s teacher doesn’t cohere even as well as his more esoteric work, but its assembled shards make for a brooding, sumptuous experience.


Tuesday, February 25 2014

Watching ‘Nebraska’ Is Like Taking a Road Trip Through the Twilight Years

Nebraska is a bittersweet film that will hit you between the eyes if you're like me: middle-aged and in a mood to reflect on where life has taken you and where you will go next.


‘Thor: The Dark World’ Brings the Hammer (and the Enthusiasm) Down

Thor worked due to its surprisingly-effective Shakespearean framework. Thor: The Dark World follows conventional Hollywood tropes and suffers for it.


Monday, February 24 2014

The Metaphysics of Isolation in Alfonso Cuarón’s ‘Gravity’

Gravity is not just a visual feast in the CGI age; it also interrogates humankind's desire to plant feet on the final frontier by confronting it with its metaphysical implications.


A Little Ominous Noir Music Makes Jules Dassin’s ‘Rifif’ Nearly Perfect

This benchmark of the heist genre shows that for the criminal, elegance and brutality go hand-in-hand, never more vividly depicted than in this tightly structured ode to Paris.


Friday, February 21 2014

‘It’s a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World’ Is an Omnibus Tribute to a Bizarre Array of Comic Talent

Stanley Kramer's widow notes that this movie was made more or less on a dare. Apocryphal or not, the origin makes sense.


Ooh La La, ‘The Prey’ Is a Nail-Biter

The Prey bounces along from one suspense-building setup to the next, erupting in a flurry of running, shooting, driving very fast, and occasionally falling from great heights.


Thursday, February 20 2014

The Chequered History of Nuns in Film

Guillaume Nicloux's 'The Nun' has a translucent woman at its centre; her face at first a budding rose becomes increasingly drawn and bruised over the course of the film.


Wednesday, February 19 2014

A Queer Reading of Truffaut’s Masterpiece, ‘Jules and Jim’

Jeanne Moreau is a bewitching temptress; but what about the men?


‘Battle of the Damned’ Will Leave You a Bit Skeeved Out

Battle of the Damned is almost incredibly fun, but winds up as bad as you anticipated.


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