Durban 2014 Review: BETI AND AMARE Is A Bizarre Ethiopian Oddity

It is 1936 and Mussolini is on the move, the fascist leader's troops pressing into Ethiopia to increase their foothold in Africa. Fearing the worst teenaged girl Beti is sent away from the big city by her mother to live... More »
By Todd Brown   
  

Karlovy Vary 2014 Review: FREE FALL, A Remarkable Cinematic Tapestry From The Director Of TAXIDERMIA

Gyorgy Palfi is one of the most interesting Hungarian filmmakers of the present day cinema. Starting with the experimental Hukkle, full recognition for Pálfi came with Taxidermia, a generational family drama on obsession, which impressively carved that story into... More »
  

Japan Cuts 2014 Review: TALE OF A BUTCHER SHOP, A Sensitively Observed Documentary Of A Working-Class Family

Tale of a Butcher Shop, Hanabusa Aya's sensitively observed documentary on a family of butchers in Kaizuka City in Osaka, Japan, begins in a very startling fashion, with an unflinching depiction of a cow's slaughtering. A man leads the cow... More »
  

Durban 2014 Review: 1994 THE BLOODY MIRACLE

"The true miracle of the 1994 elections, is that they happened at all. If this was a miracle, it was a truly bloody one." John Kani, narrating for 1994 The Bloody Miracle.1994 The Bloody Miracle, a documentary three years in... More »
  

Durban 2014 Review: HARD TO GET Is Easy To Love

Over the past few years there has been an unmistakable sense that South Africa is a film nation on the rise and if that is, indeed, the case then its continued ascent will rest on the shoulders of bright young... More »
By Todd Brown   
  

Japan Cuts 2014 Review: LOVE'S WHIRLPOOL Offers Potent Mix of Eroticism, Comedy, And Melancholy

Miura Daisuke (Boys on the Run) adapts his own award-winning 2005 play Love's Whirlpool into his latest film of the same name, and it is quite a remarkable and wonderfully acted film where sex is the main subject and the... More »
  

Review: Cathy Garcia-Molina's SHE'S DATING THE GANGSTER Is More Than Just Your Average Filipino Rom-Com

The early 90's was for Philippine cinema a period for transition from the hard-hitting dramas and actioners to the sugary and light romances that are still popular up to today. Carlos Siguion-Reyna's Hihintayin Kita sa Langit (I Will Wait For... More »
By Oggs Cruz   
  

Review: MOOD INDIGO (European Version) Exhilarates And Exhausts In Equal Measure

Michel Gondry is back. And he's going no holds barred. After slumming it as studio hired-gun and inner-city auteur (in 2011's The Green Hornet and 2012's The We and the I, respectively), the French director is back in small-batch surrealist... More »
By Ben Croll   
  

Japan Cuts 2014 Review: 0.5MM, A Darkly Comedic Probe Of Japan's Historical And Social Psyche

The remarkable Japanese director Ando Momoko expands her cinematic canvas considerably with her second feature, 0.5mm, a major highlight of this year's Japan Cuts festival. It's a deceptively small film that tackles big subjects, an intimate film with an epic three... More »
  

Japan Cuts 2014 Review: MONSTERZ, In Which Nakata Hideo Misfires With A Lackluster Remake

The slow but steady decline of the once-great Nakata Hideo (The Ring, Chaos, Dark Water) continues unabated with his latest, Monsterz. This is a remake of Haunters, the 2010 Korean film by Kim Min-seok that itself was no classic, but had... More »
  

Japan Cuts 2014 Review: WOOD JOB! Takes Us Deep Into the World Of Forestry, With Wonderfully Comic Results

The recent Japanese film Wood Job! is not, despite its very suggestive title, a pornographic film, which will either relieve or disappoint you, depending on where your movie tastes happen to lie. Instead, it is the latest comedy by Yaguchi... More »
  

Review: WHEN MARNIE WAS THERE, Ghibli Enters A New Age With A Melancholic Ghost Story

Studio Ghibli and its catalogue of extraordinary animated films has been built on the back of two men: the creator of its most beloved characters and star of the studio, Miyazaki Hayao and the often over-looked, but no less talented,... More »
  

Review: HUNGRY GHOST RITUAL Has No Appetite For Horror

Nick Cheung follows a string of critical and commercial hits with his debut as writer-director, a seasonal horror flick in which he also takes the leading role. While Cheung has a keen eye for detail when it comes to the... More »
  

London Indian 2014 Review: AS SEEN BY THE REST Presents An Intricate Puzzle Box For Movie Buffs

A thrilling mystery in several parts, As Seen By the Rest (Ulidavaru Kandante) is a bold leap forward for the cinema of Karnataka, India. The film is both completely comfortable in its own skin and with its identity as popular... More »
By J Hurtado   
  

Review: BOYHOOD, An Extraordinary Chronicle Of Growing Up

Shot over the course of 12 years with the same core cast, Richard Linklater's latest film Boyhood is a rare cinematic feat for reasons that go beyond its already unorthodox production. Call it "This American Boy's Life", Linklater's chronicle of... More »
  

DVD Review: HUNTING THE LEGEND, Where Even The Scares Are Nowhere To Be Found

The found footage Bigfoot flick Hunting The Legend is being released on DVD today, July 8th. In 2008, a deer hunter was taken by something in the Alabama woods. Only his rifle, blood and a 16" footprint were left behind... Five... More »
  

NY Asian 2014 Review: HOPE, Devastatingly Sad Yet Beautifully Uplifting

One of the drawbacks of being a working critic is that the volume of film viewing this necessitates, trying to keep up with new releases, festival and retrospective screenings and such, can tend to flatten out your emotional responses to... More »
  

Blu-ray Review: The POSSESSION Release By Mondo Vision Owns All Others

(It's a psychological art-house drama, but with rather more gore, explosions and tentacle-sex than is usual in this genre...) Ever since Criterion coined the term "Special Edition" for some of their laserdiscs, over two decades ago, the concept has... More »
By Ard Vijn   
  

FIDOCS 2014 Review: THE WALTZ OF THE USELESS Is An Accurate Chronicle That Lacks Focus

Personally, I think that the sign of a good documentary is when it sets out to "document" something and lays out the facts in the ground in a clear and proper fashion, either it be through interviews, narrations, or whatever... More »
  

Review: With ME AND YOU Bertolucci Makes A Sweet Return

The reason there hasn't been a new Bernardo Bertolucci film for more than ten years is because the now 72-year-old master filmmaker of The Conformist, Last Tango in Paris and The Last Emperor, has been having health problems. His bad... More »
  
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