Review: APRIL AND THE EXTRAORDINARY WORLD, A Tricky, Stirring Journey

April is an extraordinary character in an extraordinary world. As voiced by Marion Cotillard in the animated film April and the Extraordinary world (original title: Avril et le monde truque), she is the offspring of scientists who have gone missing.... More »
By Peter Martin   
  

Review: VALLEY OF LOVE, An Affecting Ghost Story Set In Death Valley

It strikes me as peculiar that Gerard Depardieu and Isabelle Huppert, two of the French cinema's titans, each appearing in hundreds of films (Depardieu 217 films, Huppert 126 to date according to imdb), had previously worked together in just 2... More »
By Dustin Chang   
  

Review: BASKIN, Confidently Creepy, Weird, Bloody And Awesome

When many people think of contemporary Turkish cinema, the first thing that comes to mind is the Palme d'Or-bait that is the films of Nuri Bilge Ceylan. Methodical (ahem, slow) dramas like Once Upon a Time in Anatolia and Winter's... More »
By Ryland Aldrich   
  

Review: BATMAN V SUPERMAN: DAWN OF JUSTICE, Overburdened By Expectation And Obligation

DC Comics kick-starts its expanded cinematic universe by pitting its two greatest superheroes against one another in Zack Snyder’s hugely anticipated follow-up to 2013’s Man Of Steel.   With the Nolan/Bale Dark Knight trilogy looming large in the background, Ben... More »
By James Marsh   
  

Diagonale Review 2016: THE DREAMED ONES, A Film Of Gently Brutal Nuances

As fragile and trembling as it is delicately clear, Ruth Beckermann's The Dreamed Ones revolves around a young woman (musical artist Anja Plaschg) and a young man (Laurence Rupp) reading part of the nearly two decades lasting correspondence between the... More »
By Ioana Florescu   
  

Review: AN Advises Everyone A Hearty Carpe Diem

(When life hands you lemons, make sweet red bean paste!) Japanese director Kawase Naomi's film An (also known in some territories as Sweet Red Bean Paste) played at the International Film Festival Rotterdam this February, where it turned out to... More »
By Ard Vijn   
  

Blu-ray Review: Chen Kaige's FAREWELL MY CONCUBINE From The BFI

For many mainstream filmgoers, Farewell My Concubine is perhaps the best-known Chinese language film of the 1990s, helped in no end by its success at the Cannes Film Festival. Directed by Chen Kaige (Yellow Earth, Temptress Moon), the film traces... More »
By James Marsh   
  

Jess Franco On Blu-ray: COUNT DRACULA From Severin Films

Back in 2012, I reviewed a Jess Franco film on Blu-ray from Redemption Films (Female Vampire) and marveled at the fact that this director, one of cinema's most enduring cult icons, was being rediscovered and given the HD treatment. At... More »
By Charlie Hobbs   
  

Review: THE PROGRAM Portrays Lance Armstrong As A Fascinating Liar

British filmmaker Stephen Frears is no stranger to bringing a controversial and highly publicized real life case to the big screen. With both The Queen and The Program, Frears explores how much the reality of an influential figure can differ... More »
  

Review: MY GOLDEN DAYS, Bittersweet Words And Lust For Life

Those allergic to French film clichés should consider running in terror from My Golden Days. The hits are all there in director Arnaud Desplechin's latest, a pseudo-prequel to his even more comically cliché-titled My Sex Life... or How I Got... More »
By Ben Croll   
  

SXSW 2016 Review: PET Stirs Up Emotions That Are Not Easily Caged

A woman is locked in a cage by a man who wants to change her. That's both a metaphor for too many modern relationships and the premise of a new film by director Carles Torrens (Apartment 143). Seth (Dominic Monaghan),... More »
By Peter Martin   
  

SXSW 2016 Review: I AM NOT A SERIAL KILLER, He Doth Protest Too Much

"There is a savage beast in every man," wrote George R.R. Martin in A Storm of Swords, and American teenager John Wayne Cleaver has taken those words to heart. John (Max Records) lives in a small, cold town in the... More »
By Peter Martin   
  

SXSW 2016 Review: WAR ON EVERYONE, Glorious, Riotous Fun

Within its first 10 minutes, War on Everyone smashes at least two dozen stereotypes familiar to anyone who has ever watched a cop movie made by a Hollywood studio, doing so in a rollicking and hilarious fashion. It's a barrage... More »
By Peter Martin   
  

Review: BELGICA Surprises, Except When It Doesn't

Belgian director Felix van Groeningen managed to make major waves internationally in the art-house circuit with his films The Misfortunates and especially The Broken Circle Breakdown, so I was quite happy when one of the surprise films of the International... More »
By Ard Vijn   
  

Blu-ray Review: Mega-Length, Little-Seen A BRIGHTER SUMMER DAY Arrives On Criterion

Fellow TwitchFilm writer Kurt Halfyard knows of my overwhelming fondness for cinematic experiences of unusual length. He and I will often seek out the one ticket in the Toronto International Film Festival's annual program that will see us sitting in... More »
By Matt Brown   
  

SXSW 2016 Review: KARAOKE CRAZIES Kills It

In Korea, few things are more important than karaoke. With thousands of karaoke bars, open all hours, littering every corner of the country, it's an activity that reaches every part of society, servicing hoards of stressed salary workers, bored teenagers... More »
By Pierce Conran   
  

Review: PARISIENNE Reiterates The Changing Face Of France

There is no shortage of a-young-girl-coming-of-age films in French cinema. Danielle Arbid's Parisienne charts this common, seemingly familiar territory. But it's from a perspective of a foreigner, a Lebanese girl to be precise, in the 90s. Even though the film... More »
By Dustin Chang   
  

Review: HYENA ROAD Straddles A Blurred Line

Hyena Road is a bit of a difficult film to quantify. On the one hand, it follows perhaps a bit too closely to some cliched images and story formats of soldiers at war. On the other, it has an earnestness... More »
  

Review: EYE IN THE SKY, Complex, Darkly Funny, But...

Tsotsi and Rendition director Gavin Hood has set himself a difficult task on multiple levels with his latest effort, Eye In The Sky. He is, first of all, tackling fabulously thorny and morally complex material as he weighs the question... More »
By Todd Brown   
  

Rotterdam 2016 Review: ALTES GELD Is Deliciously Devious

This year, the International Film Festival Rotterdam had a section dedicated to television series. In it, you could see episode-collections shown as films, and films that are soon to become adapted as television series. But one of the most spectacular... More »
By Ard Vijn   
  
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