Fantastic Fest 2014 Review: BLIND, A Stunning, Sensitive Ode To The Lonely

What we see: A street in Oslo, Norway. A dress shop. Pedestrians stream on by. Standing on the inside of the shop is a German Shepard. It Barks. Spittle hits the window. Pedestrians stream on by. What we hear: A... More »
  

Toronto 2014 Review: LEVIATHAN Takes A Gorgeous And Savage Look At Modern Russia

A rundown fishing town on the coast of the Arctic Ocean is the rugged edge-of-the-world stage for Andrey Zvyagintsev's complex, but quite accessible, new film. There is a visual mastery of relating wide open natural spaces, with precise man-made interiors, present... More »
  

L'Etrange 2014 Review: THE TRIBE, No Sound, But A Whole Lot Of Fury

Not one word of dialogue is spoken in director Myroslav Slaboshpytskiy's The Tribe, a stark Ukrainian drama that mixes gang thriller with boarding school intrigue, and pushes the maxim 'show don't tell' into brutal new extremes. The film presents a... More »
By Ben Croll   
  

Toronto 2014 Review: THE DUKE OF BURGUNDY, A Sublime And Specific Sex Comedy

Starting off with what is undoubtedly the opening credit sequence of the year, Peter Strickland's The Duke of Burgundy never ceases to surprise and delight over its 100 minutes, offering a dry but meticulous humour and rhythm. Those credits, offering... More »
  

Toronto 2014 Review: Winterbottom's THE FACE OF AN ANGEL Is A Meta-Narrative Thriller That Works

It's a dangerous thing to make a movie about making a movie. It's even more dangerous when the movie is about the writing process for the very movie the audience is watching. Not only is the meta-narrative difficult to pull... More »
  

Toronto 2014 Review: SPRING Is No Sophomore Slump

"You saw me all fucked up and I am still here." So says Evan (Lou Taylor Pucci) to his Italian girlfriend, Louise (Nadia Hilker), after discovering that her 'little secret' is well outside his comfort zone. It is this moment, well... More »
  

Toronto 2014 Review: CLOUDS OF SILS MARIA Will Age Gracefully

The eponymous image of Clouds of Sils Maria features a heavenly mist snaking its way through mountain peaks like a river, the rocks frozen in time, immutable, the clouds in perpetual motion.It is shown as shot for Olivier Assayas in 2014,... More »
  

Review: It's Baudrillard Revisited In Czech Anti-Rom DELIGHT

Czech director Jitka Rudolfová rejoins the ranks of emerging filmmakers worth following. Her feature debut, a sort of generational observation piece called Dreamers, focuses on a group of friends in their 30's who decide to change their aimless lives. Delight... More »
  

Review: WETLANDS, Not For The Faint Of Heart Nor Weak Of Stomach

When a film begins with a teenage girl deliberately smearing her genitals all over an especially disgusting public toilet seat, you pretty much have an idea what you're in for. Wetlands, director David Wnendt's sophomore feature after the award winning... More »
By J Hurtado   
  

Review: DOCTOR WHO S8E02, INTO THE DALEK (Or, They Shrunk The Doctor And Put Him In A Dalek)

Regeneration episodes tend to be anomalies, so Peter Capaldi's second installment as the Doctor was always going to be more telling as to his take on the character. The good news, then, is that he remains brilliant. This Doctor is... More »
  

Review: THE CONGRESS, Ambitious And Mostly Successful

Loosely based on the sci-fi musings of Stanislav Lem, Ari Folman follows up his Oscar-nominated Waltz With Bashir with this ambitious and mostly successful exploration of celebrity, cinema and the subconscious. One of the biggest criticisms of Cinema, and Hollywood... More »
  

Review: THE NOTEBOOK, A Chilling Tale Of Creepy Twins In WWII Hungary

The idea of viewing wartime through the eyes of children has had its share of cinematic treatments over the years. Based on a prize winning novel of the same name, Hungarian director János Szász adds The Notebook/Le Grand Cahier to that... More »
  

FrightFest 2014 Review: ALLELUIA, A Fire-Charged Thriller

The madness and obsession of love is a recurring theme in Fabrice de Welz's first two films Calvaire and Vinyan, and his latest, Alleluia, continues this trend. Taking on the infamous tale of the Honeymoon Killers (an American couple who conned... More »
  

Review: THE TRIP TO ITALY, Very Funny, Yet Overly Familiar

Michael Winterbottom's The Trip was an enormously pleasant surprise. The 2010 UK TV series -- also cut into feature form for the international market -- was built on what appeared to be the flimsiest of premises, featuring British comics Rob... More »
By Todd Brown   
  

Review: RAGNAROK, Monstrous Family Fun, Norwegian Style

Curse you, Indiana Jones! The bullwhip-toting, fedora-wearing, hard-loving professor created unrealistic expectations for all cinematic archaeologists who have followed in his footsteps. Thus, the gentle, mild, soft-spoken Sigurd, a tall and slender family man who is still coping with the... More »
  

Fantasia 2014 Review: THE HUNDRED YEAR OLD MAN WHO CLIMBED OUT THE WINDOW AND DISAPPEARED

For all of us who feel Robert Zemeckis's Forrest Gump is a sentimental, condescending insult to cinema audiences everywhere, and David Fincher's The Curious Case of Benjamin Button is not a helluvalot better, we finally have an entry into 'the man... More »
  

Melbourne 2014 Review: In TWO DAYS, ONE NIGHT, The Dardennes Eschew Nothing

Why did Two Days, One Night work so well for me? It's not easy to explain. This is especially the case, considering this is my first experience watching a film by Jean-Pierre and Luc Dardenne, and the fact I know nothing about... More »
  

Review: THE STRANGE LITTLE CAT, A Masterclass In Minimalism, From A Newcomer

While cinema acts as a temporal artifice like no other medium out there, films that capture the absolute spark of a moment -- the Nowness of a breath or a look -- for all to experience at a further moment,... More »
  

Review: WAR STORY, A Devastating Study Of Conflict, From Within

Mark Jackson did not so much as burst forth onto the independent film scene in 2011 with his brilliant first feature Without. Rather he made a careful set of imprints and impressions, distinct and measured, over the entire year on... More »
  

Review: A MOST WANTED MAN, All Cloak, No Dagger

The stakes are surprisingly low in Anton Corbijn's latest effort A Most Wanted Man; a skewed take of the war on terror and the complexities of institutions and stateless beings. The film, set in the wintry German city of Hamburg, purposely... More »
  
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