Review: Gabriel Mascaro's NEON BULL Mingles Naturalism And Sensuality In Brazil

Brazilian helmer Gabriel Mascaro is a keen observer of human behaviors. With his documentary work, such as Housemaids, High-rise, he demonstrated his anthropological tendencies and lent sharp insights into complex Brazilian society while being playful and adventurous with the cinema... More »
By Dustin Chang   
  

Review: Joachim Trier's LOUDER THAN BOMBS Goes Off Gently, Beautifully

I can't stress enough that watching Joachim Trier's films is like reading really good books, that he might be the most literary (not in a superficial sense) film director working today. With each new film, Trier and his writing partner... More »
By Dustin Chang   
  

Review: FOUR COLOR EULOGY Geeks Out In St. Louis

Replete with angsty real-world male drama and front-to-end pop culture reference-filled dialogue, the modest Four Color Eulogy could be compatible to a Kevin Smith movie, minus that third hook of vulgarity. (Something that is to its credit.) We open on... More »
By Jim Tudor   
  

Review: HARDCORE HENRY, A Nonstop Thrill Ride

In some number of years from now when Virtual Reality is finally really here and we're all immersed in first person narratives, we'll look back at Ilya Naishuller's Hardcore Henry and ask, "Were we all really so impressed by this... More »
By Ryland Aldrich   
  

Review: HAVANA MOTOR CLUB Tools Nicely Through Cuba

The rift between car culture and filmmaking isn't what we might think.   Considering both were invented and popularized at the same point in history, maybe this shouldn't be so surprising.  Although the rabid devotion that both inspire in their... More »
By Jim Tudor   
  

Criterion's BICYCLE THIEVES Steals The Show

Vittorio De Sica is widely regarded as a master in the realm of world cinema. As one of the Italian neorealism forerunners (in company with Roberto Rossellini and Luchino Visconti), De Sica concentrated on films that told stories about real... More »
  

Indian Film Fest LA 2016 Review: ALIGARH, A Human Tragedy

In April of 2010, Professor S.R. Siras died alone in a rented room. He'd been sacked from his job as the head of the department of regional languages in Aligarh, Uttar Pradesh, India. He'd been a professor of Marathi at... More »
By J Hurtado   
  

Indian Film Fest LA 2016 Review: KIRUMI, When Ambition Bites Back

Director Anucharan's debut feature, Kirumi, is the kind of calling card that every filmmaker dreams of. This thrilling drama boasts well drawn characters, enough twists and turns to keep the audience guessing, a visual style that is confident without feeling... More »
By J Hurtado   
  

Indian Film Fest LA 2016 Review: FOR THE LOVE OF A MAN Profiles Fans Of India's Greatest Superstar

There are movie stars and then there are MOVIE STARS, and on some level beyond the latter, there exists Superstar Rajinikanth. For nearly forty years, this former bus conducter has inspired almost religious devotion from his fans both inside and... More »
By J Hurtado   
  

Indian Film Fest LA 2016 Review: ANGRY INDIAN GODDESSES, India's Women Are Docile No More

India, like every other film industry in the world, suffers from a significant shortage of films featuring women in leading roles. I'm not talking about women's films, chick flicks, or other films that celebrate women by exaggerating feminity to conform... More »
By J Hurtado   
  

Review: THE GIRL IN THE PHOTOGRAPHS, Woefully Underdeveloped

In the opening scene of The Girl in the Photographs - an indie slasher that’s notoriously Wes Craven’s very last film credit -, we see two girls walking out of a movie theater after watching a horror movie. One of... More »
  

Indian Film Fest LA 2016 Review: OTTAAL, A Boy Trapped In The Cage Of Destiny

  Jayaraj's Malayalam language feature Ottaal (The Trap) begins with a boy writing a Christmas letter to his grandfather. Kuttappayi, the boy in question, writes this letter in the dark, obviously past his own bedtime and in secret. His miserable... More »
By J Hurtado   
  

Review: AFTERNOON, A Moving, Intimate Conversation On Life And Art

I might as well get to the point right off the bat: Afternoon, the latest work by Taiwan’s master auteur Tsai Ming-liang, is to my mind, one of the most absorbing, humorous, movingly poignant, fascinating, and just plain loveliest films... More »
  

Review: I SAW THE LIGHT, Cheatin', Drinkin', And Singin'

Twangin' Tom Hiddleston lights up the screen whenever he sings as country music legend Hank Williams in the biopic I Saw the Light, which plays like a dramatization of a Wikipedia entry. A sense of doom hangs over the picture,... More »
By Peter Martin   
  

Review: DARLING, A Particular Brand Of Horror

In the last few years, writer-director-producer Mickey Keating has established himself as a prolific genre filmmaker, and his film Pod was released just a few months ago. Darling, his latest work, is a low-key psychological thriller that draws from a... More »
By Alex Williams   
  

Review: MILES AHEAD, Cool Attitude Prevails In Don Cheadle's Unconventional Miles Davis Biopic

Doing a biopic on a legend is always a challenge. Doing justice to the subject it is portraying, even more so, is especially challenging when it's someone like Miles Davis. It's rather surprising that there wasn't a movie or two... More »
By Dustin Chang   
  

Review: Naivety Goes Awry in Coming-of-Middle-Age Greek Dramedy SUNTAN

Greek cinema had a successful run last year reminding us of the cinematic deluge from Hellenic peninsula we had started to refer to as the Greek New Wave. Besides the already known personalities with international credentials - Athina Rachel Tsangari... More »
By Martin Kudlac   
  

Review: PHANTOM HALO Never Quite Decides What It Wants To Be

Antonia Bogdanovich's feature debut Phantom Halo can never quite figure out which direction to head in. Part family drama, part crime thriller, these two ideas are not necessarily antithetical, and each in and of themselves is not necessarily bad (though... More »
  

Blu-ray Review: A POEM IS A NAKED PERSON Boasts More Rock, Les Blank - Via Criterion

The cinema of Les Blank is one of wonder, a childlike sense of openness and discovery.  It's a mischievous wonder, the kind of freedom not dissimilar to the five year old who insists on wearing a Halloween costume to church... More »
By Jim Tudor   
  

Review: ROCKY HANDSOME, The Reason The West Hates Bollywood

I am not a religious man, but I am an evangelist for the things I love. First and foremost among those few things that I feel are worthy of my enthusiasm is the cinema of India. I am an evangelist... More »
By J Hurtado   
  
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