Review: WHAT WE BECOME, The Noir-ish Horror Of A Family Being Torn Apart

An extremely well-made horror film from Denmark, What We Become (original title: Sorgenfri) examines the churning emotional dynamics of a nuclear family when they are placed under extreme -- some might even call it apocalyptic -- stress. Mother Pernille (Mille... More »
By Peter Martin   
  

Review: THE LOBSTER Loses Its Way

Boy, I wanted to love this movie. Really, I did. I mean, the first shot of the film is a delight: a woman is passively driving in a car. She gets out, windshield wipers still flailing away, and pulls out... More »
By Jason Gorber   
  

Review: HIGH-RISE, A Provocation To Disengage

As audience empathy tests go, killing the dog is perhaps the most capital of movie-crimes. Here it is gleefully committed in the opening minutes; a bellwether for the casually curious to beware.    Several other canine-murders are peppered throughout the... More »
By Kurt Halfyard   
  

Tribeca 2016 Review: ALWAYS SHINE, In Which the Hollywood Dream Factory Becomes A Nightmare

Director Sophia Takal more than fulfills the considerable promise of her debut Green with her second feature, a film that often looks, acts and feels like a thriller/horror flick, but at its heart is a dramatic treatise on the tyranny... More »
  

NY Indian Film Fest 2016 Review: PARCHED Pleads For Peace And Equality In The Face Of Violence

It is dangerous to be a woman in India these days. While I sincerely hate to paint an entire country with such broad strokes, this is the story I'm told over and over again by the news of deadly gang... More »
By J Hurtado   
  

NY Indian Film Fest 2016 Review: KOTHANODI, A Quartet Of Dark Fables From The Rivers Of Assam

Far from the hustle and bustle of India's big film industries in Mumbai, Chennai, and Hyderabad is the western state of Assam. This state borders China to the north, and stretches almost all the way to Myanmar in the west.... More »
By J Hurtado   
  

Hot Docs 2016 Review: ANGRY INUK Recontextualizes Activism

"Martha Stewart does not live here," reads a sign in the home of lawyer, seal skin seamstress and economic activist Aaju Peter. The feminist icon you have probably never heard of, from her abode in the capital city of Nunavut,... More »
By Kurt Halfyard   
  

Review: In X-MEN: APOCALYPSE, Greed Is God

The 1980s are back whether we like it or not. Like Zack Snyder's Watchmen before it, X-Men: Apocalypse adapts mainstream super hero comic book material from the eighties as taking place then. Like that film, it tries hard, but remains... More »
By Jim Tudor   
  

Review: HERE ALONE, Having Loved And Lost In Time Of The Apocalypse

Two of the most mis-quoted lines in Lord Tennyson’s poem ‘In Memoriam’ are… 'Tis better to have loved and lost Than never to have loved at all. These lines are often taken out of their context (the author’s mourning the... More »
By Andrew Mack   
  

Hot Docs 2016 Review: BEWARE THE SLENDERMAN And The Wisconsin Justice System

If you have not heard of the Slenderman at this point, trust me that your kids have. He is a tall thin man in a suit usually seen looming in the background of locations where children play or blending into... More »
By Kurt Halfyard   
  

Review: 24, Top-Tier Time Traveling Thrills With Suriya

An admission up front: I am a huge fan of Tamil film superstar Suriya. If I were to compare him to a similar performer in Hollywood, I’d say he’s kind of like the Gerard Butler of Kollywood. He’s a buff... More »
By J Hurtado   
  

Review: ELSTREE 1976 Presents The Human Side Behind A Space Opera

Hundreds of actors work on a film production but only a phenomenon as huge and unique as Star Wars really make fans interested in basically every single one of them, including the extras and the masked performers. This real fascination... More »
  

Review: PHANTOM OF THE THEATRE, A Movie Plagued By Ghosts

Elegantly mounted and gorgeously shot, Phantom of the Theatre is a stuffy ghost story from China that fails to be as haunting as its premise. Borrowing elements from Phantom of the Opera, the new film is set in Shanghai in... More »
By Peter Martin   
  

Review: BELLADONNA OF SADNESS, A Spellbinding Work Of Carnal Beauty

Yamamoto Eiichi's long forgotten work of erotic fantasy, 1973's Belladonna of Sadness, is an unforgettable cinematic experience that has no equal, even all these years later. This project, the last film in a trilogy produced by manga legend Tezuka Osamu... More »
By Charlie Hobbs   
  

Review: DHEEPAN, Behind The Immigrant Experience, A Rich And Provocative Story

It begins with chaos: shouting voices calling out in alarm, a cacophony of sound, and a flourish of a camera moving through a thick crowd. It ends with similar sounds and a similar shot, one far less sinister and disconcerting.... More »
By Jason Gorber   
  

Hot Docs 2016 Review: HOW TO BUILD A TIME MACHINE Beautifully Mixes Craft And Emotion

The famous Serenity Prayer of american theologian Reinhold Niebuhr is as follows:  "God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference." Jay... More »
By Kurt Halfyard   
  

Review: Kurosawa's RAN, 4K Restoration DVD/Blu-ray Release

One morning, several years ago, I finished an interview with a documentary filmmaker at a little café within the cavernous underground of the Tokyo train station. The political nature of the film, combined with the fact the station was on... More »
  

Imagine 2016 Review: THEY CALL ME JEEG ROBOT Hits All Its Beats

(In short: it's like a sad Captain America versus a sad Joker, and it's great!) This year's winner of the audience award at the Imagine Film Festival Amsterdam came from an unexpected direction: Italy. While that country has a rich... More »
By Ard Vijn   
  

Review: RIO, I LOVE YOU, A Pretty But Unsatisfying Travel Package

Film franchises aren’t just for the multiplexes anymore, or for movies featuring the likes of Batman, Superman, and the Fast and the Furious road racing crew. The arthouse has them too, and one of the highest-profile ones is the “Cities... More »
  

Okinawa 2016 Review: SPARK, Netflix Plants Their Flag In Japan

Much like they already have in the States, Netflix has been ramping up its local productions in Japan following their launch their last September. Though not their first original Japanese series, Spark (or Hibana), which is based on a popular... More »
By Pierce Conran   
  
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