TV Review: SCROTAL RECALL S1E1, ABIGAIL Delivers A Hysterical And Surprisingly Earnest Take On Modern Relationships

Dylan has a problem. Young and earnest, a believer in true love and all of those things, Dylan is the sort of young man that you'd love to bring home to mom. But if you did you'd also be bringing... More »
By Todd Brown   
  

Busan 2014 Review: SECOND LIFE OF THIEVES Is Mundanely Melancholic

A melancholic malaise permeates the incredibly subdued and softly told Second Life of Thieves, the latest feature from Malaysian director Woo Ming Jin. Set in the sweltered confines of a seaside village, the film transgresses past and present confidently. Initially... More »
  

New York 2014 Review: EDEN, An Ambitious Yet Personal Look at 90s Electronic Dance Music Scene

The other day, I saw a college kid wearing a T- shirt that said, "In school now just to be a wage slave later." I seriously considered giving the kid a hug. And I could've easily regarded it as some... More »
  

Busan 2014 Review: ENTANGLED Gets Caught Up In Its Own Depressing Narrative

Following the blistering debut Fatal, a gritty rape-revenge thriller that bowed at the Busan Film Festival in 2012, Lee Don-ku returns to Busan with the disappointing family drama Entangled. Though it seeks to inspire a similar sense of shock and... More »
  

Busan 2014 Review: GIFTED Takes An Interesting Turn Before Veering Off Course

Taking its cue from the common social grievances often found in Korean indie dramas, Gifted, the sophomore effort of Poongsan (2011) helmer Jung Jai-hung, examines the friction between unemployment and consumerist ambitions in modern Korea. Slight and familiar, the film... More »
  

Busan 2014 Review: PARADISE IN SERVICE, A Classical Tearjerker

Paradise in Service is presented by Taiwanese film-maker Hou Hsiao-Hsien but it is certainly not directed by him. This classical melodrama is a much more accessible film, and although conventional, communist-war period in Taiwan is brought to vivid life thanks... More »
  

Review: ANNABELLE Is Worse Than Being Given An Antique Doll As A Gift

It is understandable that Warner Brothers and New Line would want to continue the success of last year's The Conjuring. The period haunted house flick proved a surprise summer smash last year, grossing over $300 million worldwide. Annabelle focuses on... More »
  

New York 2014 Review: TIMBUKTU Is A Strong Condemnation Of Religious Extremism

Timbuktu, that faraway place, the end of the world, is an actual city in Northern Mali in Africa.  It was once a bustling trade town in sub-Saharan Africa and now famous for its fabulous architecture, libraries and scholars. Abderramane Sissako... More »
  

Review: MEETING DR. SUN, A Playfully Poignant Coming-Of-Age Heist Flick

Yee Chih-yen, Taiwanese director of the much-celebrated Blue Gate Crossing, delivers a heartfelt, humorous and poignant coming of age story in Meeting Dr. Sun. Part high school drama, part adventurous heist flick, the film follows impoverished high-schooler Lefty (Zhan Huai-yun),... More »
  

Vancouver 2014 Review: WHITE BIRD IN A BLIZZARD, Gregg Araki's Nostalgic, Seductive Puzzle

Gregg Araki's latest offering, White Bird In A Blizzard, is set during the time period when Araki first began making films (1988-1991). Because of this, the sets and costumes are rendered with a loving nostalgia that never feels overly novel.... More »
  

New York 2014 Review: GONE GIRL, Meticulously Crafted And Unabashedly Trashy

Gone Girl, David Fincher's latest, and New York Film Festival opener, based on the bestselling novel by Gillian Flynn, begins with a close-up of its central married couple, Nick Dunne (Ben Affleck) and Amy Dunne (Rosamund Pike). Nick is gently... More »
  

Fantastic Fest 2014 Review: TOMMY, A Gripping Nordic Noir About Dames

The latest in a string of stylish crime thrillers to emerge from Scandinavia, Tommy is the new film from Swedish director Tarik Saleh, and offers a blistering change of pace to 2009's animated sci-fi odyssey Metropia.A daring airport robbery and... More »
  

Fantastic Fest 2014 Review: THE STRANGER Delivers A Mixed Bag

Directed by Guillermo Amoedo and executive produced by Eli Roth and Nicolas Lopez (who collaborated on Aftershock, The Green Inferno, and next year's home invasion thriller Knock, Knock with Keanu Reeves), The Stranger is a vampire film that doesn't scream... More »
  

Fantastic Fest 2014 Review: V/H/S VIRAL Catches On

V/H/S brought us stories from Ti West, Adam Wingard, Glen McQuaid, and Joe Swanberg, among others. V/H/S 2 gave us far superior films from Gareth Evans and Timo Tjahjanto, Gregg Hale and Eduardo Sanchez, Jason Eisener, Simon Barrett, and Adam... More »
  

Fantastic Fest 2014 Review: I AM TRASH Lives Up To Its Title In Gloriously Reprehensible Fashion

South Korean indie provocateur Lee Sang-woo returns with the third and final instalment in his thematic "bad family" trilogy, which follows three grown up brothers, reunited when their pedophile father is released from prison. Inspired by a series of real-life... More »
  

New York 2014 Review: THE BLUE ROOM Shows Off Mathieu Amalric's Directing Chops

Mathieu Amalric's The Blue Room is a hard film to like-- its tone is cold and distant. But it is precisely designed that way to accompany in showing the mind of its passive protagonist. Based on the book of the... More »
  

Fantastic Fest 2014 Review: GOODNIGHT MOMMY Will Keep You Up At Night

Serving as the single secret screening at this year's Fantastic Fest, Austrian arthouse horror Goodnight Mommy gets under your skin early and stays there long after the credits. Within its sparse and sterile decor, this minutely observed chamber piece tears... More »
  

Review: DOCTOR WHO S8E06, THE CARETAKER (Or, The Doctor Goes Undercover)

Now this is much more like it. "The Caretaker" is a considered and nuanced episode of Doctor Who that still manages to be great fun. It handles the complex relationships and emotions that are driving the show rather deftly, and... More »
  

Fantastic Fest 2014 Review: WASTE LAND, For This Detective, To Brood Is To Live

Diffusion is the name of the game in Waste Land, a brooding police procedural from Belgium that depends more on its pervasive ambience than plot twists. Actually, it's probably a disserve to describe the newest film by writer/director Pieter Van... More »
  

Fantastic Fest 2014 Review: HIGH FIVE Revels In Drug-Fueled Mayhem

Manuel Facal's High Five (Relocos y Repasados) is an Uruguayan stoner comedy that belongs in the company of the greats. While drug movies have been around for at least 50 years, it wasn't until the legendary Lou Adler's adaptation of the... More »
  
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