Okinawa 2014 Review: ONE THIRD Is A Darkly Comic Crime Caper

Shinagawa Hiroshi follows up Slapstick Brothers with a fast-paced, light-on-its-feet caper that cruises on its bulging ensemble cast even when the convoluted plot threatens to combust under the weight of its myriad twists and double crosses.When gambling-addicted nightclub manager Shu... More »
  

Review: BLOOD TIES Knots Up 1970s New York

To call Guillaume Canet's Blood Ties a love letter to the 1970s is a bit of an understatement. The Clive Owen, Billy Crudup brothers-on-opposite-sides-of-the-law drama absolutely oozes with 1970s nostalgia, from its impeccable costume and production design to its almost... More »
  

Review: NYMPHOMANIAC: VOLUME I Teases And Entices

When discussing Lars Von Trier's Nymphomaniac within team Twitch, I suddenly realized a couple of things that surprised me. One, that I've never been disappointed yet by a Lars Von Trier film. Two, how few Lars Von Trier films I've... More »
By Ard Vijn   
  

Review: THE MISSING PICTURE, A Hauntingly Poetic Work of Emotional and Historical Archaeology

Cambodian filmmaker Rithy Panh has devoted his career to documenting the brutal horrors perpetrated on his homeland by the genocidal Khmer Rouge regime, which for four nightmarish years from 1975 to 1979 subjected the citizens under their control to forced... More »
  

Review: EL CRIMEN DEL CÁCARO GUMARO, A Collection Of Lazy, Juvenile Jokes

El Crimen del Cácaro Gumaro was, on paper, a much welcomed movie for Mexican cinema. In a period when "art films" are winning prestigious awards internationally (i.e. Post Tenebras Lux and Heli at Cannes) and the number of film festivals... More »
  

ND/NF 2014 Review: THE VANQUISHING OF THE WITCH BABA YAGA Is A Ravishing Meditation On Our Relationship With Nature

As a lover of old, rustic folktales and being married to a descendant of an eastern European Jew, Baba Yaga holds a special place in my heart. Creepier and more twisted than the Grimm Bros' tales, Baba Yaga tells a... More »
  

ND/NF 2014 Review: OF HORSES AND MEN Is A Delightfully Deadpan Comedy From Iceland

Iceland's most celebrated theater director, Benedikt Erlingsson, makes a film debut with Of Horses and Men, a wry, episodic tales of love and death in a small community all reflected on the eyes of the much coveted Icelandic horses. The... More »
  

SXSW 2014 Review: HOUSEBOUND, A Deadpan, Diabolical, Haunted Thriller

If looks could kill, Kylie would be on death row. In Gerard Johnstone's deadpan, diabolical, and haunted thriller Housebound, Kylie (Morgana O'Reilly) is an angry, insolent young woman, full of piss and vinegar, so when she's convicted of a crime... More »
  

SXSW 2014 Review: SPACE STATION 76 Is A Retro Future Worthy Of Its Buzz

When I first heard the very far-out premise of Space Station 76, which the film's press release describes as "a comedic drama about a group of people (and several robots) living on a space station in a 1970's-version of... More »
By Zach Gayne   
  

Review: ENEMY Explores Villeneuve's More Unique Side

With film, things often come in pairs. Sometimes the doubles are explicit; some studio vying with another for a given plot, be it a tale of animated insects or impending asteroid impacts. Sometimes, the twinning takes the form of accidental... More »
  

Review: THE ROCKET Shoots For The Heart

The feature debut from documentarian Kim Mordaunt follows the plight of a young village boy in rural Laos, who is believed to bring bad luck to his family, and his efforts to win them back by entering a dangerous rocket... More »
  

SXSW 2014 Review: A WOLF AT THE DOOR Huffs, Puffs, and Blows Sweet Love Goodbye

In the fairytale classic  the Three Little Pigs, -- you guessed it -- three little pigs set out in the world to find their fortune. Things come to an abrupt halt, however, when an asshole big bad wolf comes... More »
  

Review: KIKI'S DELIVERY SERVICE Fails to Fly

Kiki's Delivery Service started life as a 1985 novel by author Kadono Eiko, but it was the '89 Studio Ghibli version that brought fame to the little witch, particularly outside of her native Japan. Since that time the book has... More »
  

Rotterdam 2014 Review: SORROW AND JOY Could Not Be More Aptly Named

(Ever loved something you expected to hate? THIS FILM!) This year, the International Film Festival Rotterdam dedicated a whole section of its "Signals" program to Danish director Nils Malmros. As I was not really aware of his work, this event... More »
By Ard Vijn   
  

SXSW 2014 Review: AMONG THE LIVING, A Horrifying Case of Boys Will Be Boys

For many horror fans it feels like a lot of the most exciting contributions to the genre these days are coming from France.  This is, at least in part, thanks to Alexandre Bustillo & Julien Maury's 2007 shocker Inside, a... More »
By Zach Gayne   
  

Review: 09 Is A Found Footage Thriller With A Twist At The End

09 might be the first Chilean found footage thriller film, and it may be the most middling effort done whenever someone tries to break into this popular brand of pictures. Specially when the film's promotion is a lie, as its... More »
  

Review: STONES FOR THE RAMPART Is A Serviceable Ode To Young War Heroes

There are two conflicting perspectives on how to approach Robert Glinski's Stones for the Rampart (Kamienie na szaniec). The first, and the more advisable one, makes the viewing experience increasingly pleasurable. It's based on an assumption that the forenamed film... More »
  

SXSW 2014 Review: OPEN WINDOWS Never Shuts Down Its Thrill Ride

Early on in Open Windows, Spanish filmmaker Nacho Vigalondo invites easy comparisons to Alfred Hitchcock's Rear Window, but then, pardon the expression, he throws them out the window. What begins as an homage quickly morphs into a thriller with its... More »
  

Review: Tone-deaf MONSTER Exhibits Unusual Cruelty Towards Women

Ingenue Kim Go-eun gets her first top billing in director Hwang In-ho's uneven and sadistic revenge thriller Monster. Exhibiting the same irreverence towards genre as in his previous film Spellbound (2011) but with none of the panache, Hwang fails to... More »
  

FICUNAM 2014 Review: THE SEARCHES (LAS BÚSQUEDAS), A Small Black And White Drama With Depth

José Luis Valle's The Searches (Las Búsquedas) reveals at the end that it was filmed in seven days using real locations, without artificial lights, and costing only $1,500 dollars in total. It is indeed a very small film, with a... More »
  
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