Film
Film

Jeff Baena Explores the Intensity of Mental Illness in His Mystery, 'Horse Girl'

Co-writer and star Alison Brie's unreliable narrator in Jeff Baena's Horse Girl makes for a compelling story about spiraling into mental illness.


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Film

'Memento' Is the Movie of the Attention Economy

We are afraid of time, and so like Leonard in Memento, we kill it, compulsively and indiscriminately.

Film

What Lurks Beneath: 'Jaws' and Political Leadership in the Time of COVID-19

Boris Johnson admires the Mayor in Spielberg's Jaws. Remember him? He was the guy who wouldn't close the beaches -- and sacrifice that revenue source -- during a public crisis.

Film

'The Serpent's Egg' Marks One of Ingmar Bergman's Strangest Efforts

The Serpent's Egg bares many of the Bergman's trademark features – the suffocating auras of despair and an underdog's sense of triumph over tragedy – but falls short of a more intelligent rendering of human drama.

Film

The 20 Top Movie Tearjerkers

Sad movies for sad times. Think you're impervious to crying during a movie? These 20 films are guaranteed to get you weeping.

Film

A Fix of Fantasy: Reviving the Wondrous Films of Karel Zeman

The imaginative filmmaker Karel Zeman influenced many artists including Terry Gilliam, Tim Burton, fellow Czech Jan Švankmajer, the Brothers Quay, and animator Lawrence Jordan's recycling of classic 19th Century imagery.

Film

Philippa Lowthorpe's 'Misbehaviour' (Film Flash)

Misbehaviour retells a bold tale of female empowerment in an expected place: the beauty pageant.

Culture

Love in the Time of Coronavirus: the Series, the Call for Papers

#Coronavirus #COVID19 #Pandemic: Love in the Time of Coronavirus is a new and hopefully short-run PopMatters series of art and life and the art of living in these times of global health crisis.

Film

Ross Is the Name, Crime Is the Game: 'My Name Is Julia Ross'

My Name Is Julia Ross is fast, direct, and easy fun. It never tests the viewer's patience with unnecessary trills.

Film

Reclaiming Small Spaces: Chantal Akerman's 'Saute ma ville' and the Art of Social Distancing

Chantal Akerman's 1968 short film Saute ma ville directly reflects our current state, serving as a meditative text on the art of staying home.

Film

32 Films That Begin With Leaving a Mental Institution

"Crazy" movies for crazy times. These 32 films make the case for the recently-escaped-or-released-mental-patient narrative as its own subgenre, replete with a language of recurring themes, plot devices, and character archetypes.

Film

'70s Horror Film Let's Scare Jessica to Death Fools Everyone

Writer-Director John Hancock and co-writer Lee Kalcheim take the gothic heroine from hundreds of penny dreadfuls and allow her to have her agency in the most unusual horror film, Let's Scare Jessica to Death.

Film

Nostalgia for the Downtown Slacker: Bertoglio's 'Downtown 81' and Linklater's 'Slacker'

Both Bertoglio's Downtown 81 and Linklater's Slacker showcase characters who are blissfully aimless, anarchic souls discretely or overtly spurning a predictable, soulless society.

Books

Joan Didion's Crystal-Clear Vision Only Got Better with Age

Reading the Library of America's comprehensive anthology, Joan Didion: The 1960s & 70s, is like walking out of the rain and into a time warp.

Film

Great Scots: 'Whiskey Galore!' and 'The Maggie'

Two Scottish comedies from Alexander Mackendrick, Whiskey Galore! and The Maggie, were part of Ealing Studios movies meant for a depressed postwar England to "let off steam".

Film

'Spider-Man: Homecoming' Has the Most Relatable Peter Parker

The teen-focused, John Hughes-inspired approach not only makes Spider-Man: Homecoming feel fresh in the realm of Spider-Man films, but in superhero films in general.

Film

Diabolically Delon: Three French Thrillers

French thrillers Diabolically Yours, Farewell Friend, and Un Flic star the handsome and controversial tough guy, Alain Delon, whose off-screen persona was not unlike his hard bastard characters.

Culture

Sex! Drugs! Volleyball! Dark Secrets of American Morality EXPOSED in Exploitation Films

Kino Lorber's Forbidden Fruit: The Golden Age of the Exploitation Picture series highlights exploitation films that aim to strike a blow for truth and health against censorship and narrow fuddy-duddies.

Film

'The Wild Goose Lake' Is a Spellbinding Neo-Noir

A gang war becomes a massive police manhunt through a remote, lawless corner of China in Yi'nan Diao's moody, violent, and gorgeously shot crime story, The Wild Goose Lake.

List This

"Everything Is Everything": 25 Moments That Make 'Marriage Story' Fall Apart Masterfully

It's the little things that make and break marriages and movies. In the case of Baumbach's Marriage Story, it's 25 little things.

Music

29 Black Music Documentaries for Black History Month 2020

For Black History Month 2020, we are showcasing films and videos featuring Black American artists. Enjoy them and learn about the origin of each Black music legend featured.

Film

Yasujiro Ozu on the Arts of Pachinko, Baseball, and Marriage

Yasujiro Ozu's films can often be described as movies in which nothing happens -- nothing except the revelation of a world, its inhabitants, and a deep understanding of their contradictions.

Film

The Tortured Mind of Anthony Asquith's Silent British Gem, 'A Cottage on Dartmoor'

Silent film A Cottage on Dartmoor brilliantly captures Anthony Asquith's fascination with the French impressionists' preoccupation with the still, singled out expression.

Film

Even When He's No Longer in Fashion James Bond (Almost) Never Goes Out of Style

A man of action mostly dressed in smart suits is absurd, but the true essence of James Bond lies in looking good as he goes about his business.

Film

10 Classic "So-Bad-They're-Good" Films

Success sticks out in memory, but so too do failures, especially the bad ones. Here are ten films that fall so flat on their face that you can't help but hit rewind.

Film

England's Postwar Paranoia Creeps in the Shadows of Three Film-Noirs

Something portentous comes out of quiet ordinary postwar English life: three schizoid noirs from directors Carol Reed, Roy and John Boulting, and Tharold Dickinson.

Books

On the Socially Conscious Filmmaker, Sidney Lumet

Maura Spiegel's biography provides a thorough and compelling look at the life and films of the progressive New York icon filmmaker, Sidney Lumet.

Film

Cue the Music: 'Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2'

James Gunn crafts a deeply flawed film, but Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, which digs deep into daddy issues, is still entertaining, visually gorgeous, and likable.

Film

20 Films That Went From Bombs to Beloved

Not every cinematic bomb remains forgettable. Sometimes, a failure is just a gemstone in disguise that will only reveal itself well past the release date.

Film

'The Douglas MacLean Collection' Pokes Fun at Our Love of Clam, Cabbage, and Kale*

The bamboozle is on in silent films One a Minute and Bell Boy 13, starring comic actor Douglas MacLean.

Film

In 'Downhill', Getting Dark Just Means Getting Harsh

Nat Faxon and Jim Rash's comedy, Downhill, paints in broad strokes and peaks early, never matching the clever satire of its source material, Force Majeure.

Film

The Ghostliness of Mark Jenkin's  Post-Brexit Parable, 'Bait'

Mark Jenkin's haunting Bait exhibits a ghostliness that complements the film's transient landscape of seasonal capital and short-term holiday lets.

Film

Daniel Krikke's 'Scared of Revolution' Brings Forth the Last Poet

Hip-hop, the most lasting and revolutionary contribution to popular music in the post-War period, does not exist without the Last Poets Umar Bin Hassan's work.

Film

For Valentine's Day, the End of Anti-Miscegenation Laws: 'The Loving Story'

The Loving Story's tale of this Supreme Court victory lays out both its legal and moral import, and then turns back to Richard and Mildred Loving in intimate, evocative images.

Film

Jerry Hopper's 'Naked Alibi' Draws Comparisons to Douglas Sirk's Films

Although it's fair to state that Jerry Hopper is no Douglas Sirk, it's also true that their careers tangoed around each other, as seen in Hopper's Naked Alibi.

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