Cairo 2014 Review: QUEEN AND COUNTRY, Funny and Heartfelt Nostalgia

John Boorman's 1987 film Hope and Glory, about the London Blitz seen through the eyes of a nine-year-old boy, is a favourite in the Rowan-Legg household (seriously, we can all quote it almost verbatim to the point of annoying guests).... More »
  

Los Cabos 2014 Review: FOR THOSE ABOUT TO ROCK: THE STORY OF RODRIGO Y GABRIELA Salutes The Mexican Guitar Duo

For Those About to Rock: The Story of Rodrigo y Gabriela is a straight celebration of Mexican guitar duo Rodrigo and Gabriela, going from their origins in Mexico City to their eventual worldwide success. Mexican journalist and the documentary's director... More »
  

St. Louis 2014 Review: THE MAKINGS OF YOU Makes A Noteworthy Debut

Whenever Hollywood comes to St. Louis, Missouri (my hometown) the filmmakers are inevitably bowled over by the architecture, the vibe, and the sheer possibilities the city has to offer in terms of diverse filming locations. In the past few decades,... More »
By Jim Tudor   
  

Cairo 2014 Review: THE CHALLAT OF TUNIS, Brilliant And Disturbing Satire

The words 'satire' and 'mockumentary', when referring to films, might automatically be thought to reference humour. But there is no humour, except very dark, in director Kaouther Ben Hania's brilliant The Challat of Tunis. It is a searing portrait of... More »
  

Cairo 2014 Review: THE CUT, A Good Epic Journey

With the exception of Atom Egoyan's Ararat, the Armenian Genocide has not had much attention in Western cinema. German-Turkish filmmaker Fatih Akin, whose previous films have often looked at issues of the marginalized, transnational cultures and violence, attempts to tackle... More »
  

Cairo 2014 Review: THEEB Doesn't Quite Live Up to its Promise

Stories of war or violent conflict can often seem more acute and terrifying through the eyes of a child, especially if it is only from the periphery, when the child knows less than the audience. Theeb, Jordanian director Naji Abu's... More »
  

Viennale 2014 Review: OUT-TAKES FROM THE LIFE OF A HAPPY MAN Transforms Memories Into Reality

Anyone familiar with the work of legendary avant garde filmmaker Jonas Mekas will instantly feel at home with his 2012 work Out-Takes From The Life Of A Happy Man that screened together with Andy Warhol's Tiger Morse (Reel 14 of... More »
  

Viennale 2014 Review: Bruno Dumont Reinvents Himself and The Possibilities Of TV-Series In His LI'L QUINQUIN

In a mesmerizing and totally unexpected move French filmmaker Bruno Dumont has reinvented not only himself but also the crime-genre and the format of television series. In his LI'l Quinquin which has been astonishing critics since its premiere at this... More »
  

Toronto After Dark 2014 Review: THE TOWN THAT DREADED SUNDOWN, A Solid Slasher Flick With Style To Spare

The Town That Dreaded Sundown begins with Texarkana resident Jami Lerner at the local drive-in with Corey. They are watching the original 1976 flick at an annual screening on Hallowe'en night. Jami is not having a good time so the... More »
By Andrew Mack   
  

Toronto After Dark 2014 Review: WHY HORROR? Speaks To Fans And Outsiders Alike

As a longtime and committed fan of the horror genre, Tal Zimmerman takes us on a journey to discover its roots, influences, players and place in different cultures. His travels will take him as far away as Japan, England and... More »
By Andrew Mack   
  

Morelia 2014 Review: MATRIA, A Documentary That Offers Little Beyond The Anecdote

It's not strange that if a documentary begins as a very personal journey, the audience wonders why they should care for it. I wondered that myself while watching Matria, a doc in which its director Fernando Llanos is trying to... More »
  

Morelia 2014 Review: THE BEGINNING OF TIME (EL COMIENZO DEL TIEMPO), An Overlong Portrait Of Aging

The famous Bette Davis quote "old age ain't no place for sissies" comes to mind when watching Bernardo Arellano's The Beginning of Time (El Comienzo del Tiempo), one of the Mexican titles in competition at this year's Morelia International Film... More »
  

Toronto After Dark 2014 Review: WOLVES Takes A Bite Out Of Pretty YA Fare

Cayden Richards had it all. He was the quarterback of his high school football team. He had a smoking hot girlfriend on his arm. Yep. Senior year was looking pretty good. But there was trouble stirring. Cayden kept having nightmares. On... More »
By Andrew Mack   
  

Valdivia 2014 Review: BEAVERLAND Starts A Controversial Discussion

There are documentaries out there made to put forward a choice or a point of view, films made to make a statement on what we do as a society. Some of them even try to do something to change the... More »
  

Busan 2014 Review: YOU (US) ME Finds Beauty In Deplorability

Max Sobol's début directorial feature You (Us) Me is a fast paced, funny, shocking, tragic and ultimately cogent view of dysfunctional relationships at their extreme.Edward is a serial killer, stalking the dark canals and abandoned parts of London to quickly... More »
  

Toronto After Dark 2014 Review: HELLMOUTH Is One Man's Existential Crisis

Ubiquitous character actor Stephen McHattie is always a pleasure to see up on the big screen. From supporting roles in Hollywood films like The Fountain, Watchmen and A History of Violence, to central performances in indie Canadian productions like the... More »
By Kurt Halfyard   
  

Busan 2014 Review: THE NIGHT Boasts Strong Cast And Clear Message

The Korean winner of this year's Sonje Award for Best Short Film at the Busan International Film Festival, The Night is a simple 35-minute tale of college friends who fall prey to the norms of Korean society. Yet by touching... More »
By Pierce Conran   
  

Busan 2014 Review: Peter Chan's DEAREST Devastates

Based on multiple true story accounts of child abduction in mainland China, Peter Chan's latest film Dearest is definitely not an easy watch. It follows a divorced couple in Shenzhen, the father Tian Wenjun (comedic actor Huang Bo) and mother... More »
  

Vancouver 2014 Review: MAN ON HIGH HEELS, Crime Genre As Transgender Study

Man On High Heels, a Korean gangster-cop flick of another color, navigates gender politics as shakily as its strangely-worded (or translated) title would suggest. Cha Seung-won stars as Ji-wook, the eponymous man: a specimen of ideal masculinity who spends his... More »
By Teresa Nieman   
  

New York 2014 Review: BIRDMAN, A Visual and Comedic Feast For The Eyes and Mind

This year's New York Film Festival came to a satisfying conclusion with one of its best selections, Birdman, or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance), the oddly titled (and punctuated) fifth feature by acclaimed Mexican filmmaker Alejandro G. Iñárritu. Returning in... More »
  
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