Review: IT FOLLOWS, A Pure Thriller

With a terrific cold opening, a somber and effective mood, strong performances and assured direction, there's lots to love about It Follows. It's a kind of pure thriller, with a few shocks mixed into what's a remarkably consistent vision that... More »
By Jason Gorber   
  

Review: THE WRECKING CREW, Musical Passion Is Always Present

The 1960s gave rise to a new kind of pop music, running the gamut from blues-infused rock 'n' roll, jazz-laced funky soul and dance music, to string-drenched mini-symphonies coming (mostly) out of California studios. The landscape then was a... More »
By Jason Gorber   
  

Review: 3 HEARTS, A Showcase For Tender Side Of Charlotte Gainsbourg

Marc (Benoit Poelvoorde of Man Bites Dog, Coco Before Chanel), a shlumpy tax investigator, just missed the train back to Paris. He now has to spend the night in a provincial town whether he likes it or not. By... More »
By Dustin Chang   
  

Review: ZHONG KUI: SNOW GIRL AND THE DARK CRYSTAL Delivers Genuine Romance But Flawed Fantasy

Acclaimed Hong Kong cinematographer Peter Pau takes another swing at directing a major motion picture with this grand scale fantasy about legendary demon queller Zhong Kui. Assisted by co-director Zhao Tianyu and featuring some spirited performances, the result is a... More »
By James Marsh   
  

Review: BETTER CALL SAUL S1E06, FIVE-O (Or, The Tragic Backstory Of Mike Ehrmantraut)

"Five-O" is the Mike-focused episode of Better Call Saul we've all been waiting for. It must be incredibly confusing for those that are fans of Breaking Bad to find themselves watching an episode entirely devoted to a Saul side character,... More »
By Simon Cocks   
  

Now On Blu-ray: AN AMERICAN HIPPIE IN ISRAEL Is One Far Out Trip

Shot in 1971, released in 1972, and almost immediately forgotten, Amos Sefer's An American Hippie in Israel was a cult classic just waiting for a rebirth when the film was found by Grindhouse Releasing co-founder, Bob Murawski. Murawski is best... More »
By J Hurtado   
  

Review: UNFINISHED BUSINESS, Tepid Fun, Fun, Fun On The Autobahn

I can't imagine that the world has been longing for yet another Vince Vaughn comedy, but apparently Hollywood considered the niche unfinished business. Unfinished Business, the title of this very forgettable if also not unpleasant corporate travel shenanigans movie, might also... More »
By Jim Tudor   
  

Review: MICHIEL DE RUYTER Brings All Cannons To The Fore

(Fear the man who yells louder than William Wallace, and kills more Englishmen than Joan of Arc!) In Dutch cinema, there isn't really a tradition of celebrating our (I'm Dutch) historical heroes. Not so much because we don't have them,... More »
By Ard Vijn   
  

French Film Festival 2015: DIPLOMACY Is A Masterfully Convincing Chamber Drama

Diplomacy is based on a stage play, this becomes wholly obvious when viewing the film as realized by the static location and the two powerful figures that have dialogue, debate and a complex diplomatic, ethical and moral verbal Ping-Pong... More »
  

French Film Festival 2015: THE NEW GIRLFRIEND Is A Definitive Ozon Joint

The New Girlfriend continues director Francoise Ozon's investigations into womanhood and fragmented social mores. His prior work, the epic Young & Beautiful and to an extent In The House were attempts to depict sexuality in different socio-political spheres and generations,... More »
  

Review: BETTER CALL SAUL S1E05, ALPINE SHEPHERD BOY (Or, Need A Will? Call McGill!)

More than any episode of Better Call Saul so far, "Alpine Shepherd Boy" questions whether Chuck's condition is something physical that he's really suffering from, or more of a psychological affliction. It's to the show's credit that this has been... More »
By Simon Cocks   
  

Review: CHAPPIE, Thug Life Doesn't Pay Off

Neill Blomkamp is on everyone's radar now that he's been chosen to direct the new Alien movie. His latest effort, Chappie, might fuel the raging debate, as it shows a weird mixture of sci-fi within the gangsta universe of rap... More »
  

French Film Festival 2015 Review: ELLE L'ADORE Keeps You Guessing, Until It Doesn't

Elle L'Adore is a curious first feature from former actress Jeanne Henry. It wastes no time getting into the grisly proceedings of an accidental homicide, but after the groundwork is laid out, the film practically crawls to a halt.Muriel (Sandrine... More »
  

Film Comment Selects 2015 Review: PHOENIX, A Masterful, Lean Film Noir

Christian Petzold (Ghosts, Barbara), perhaps one of the most gifted storytellers working in cinema today, strikes gold again with Phoenix, a Hitchcockian, postwar noir revenge flick. Clocking in at a very lean 98 minutes, the film revolves around a concentration camp survivor named... More »
By Dustin Chang   
  

Review: THE DEAL, A Serviceable But Generic Korean Revenge Thriller

Korea delivers yet another serviceable revenge thriller with The Deal, a well-oiled but overly familiar addition to the longstanding local genre staple. With young women violently murdered during downpours and Kim Sang-kyung once again playing a hapless detective at his... More »
By Pierce Conran   
  

Review: HOUSE OF CARDS, Season 3 Seeks To Consolidate Its Power

Binge-watching the third season of a show is like spending the weekend in bed with an old friend: even if you know what to expect, you still hope for a few fireworks. Note: spoilers for the first two seasons of... More »
By Peter Martin   
  

Review: WILD CANARIES, An Effervescent Comic Murder Mystery, Both Retro And Modern

One of the most interesting forms of music sampling is what's known as the "mash-up." In some of the best and most creative examples of this practice - e.g. Danger Mouse's Grey Album (Jay Z's Black Album/Beatles' White Album) or... More »
  

Review: Joyless Rebellion In Joel Potrykus's Hilarious, Disturbing BUZZARD

BAMcinématek at the BAM Rose Cinemas will present a special advance screening of Joel Potrykus' Buzzard on March 4th, followed by a Q&A with the director and screenings of his previous two films, Coyote and Ape. Please visit BAM website... More »
By Dustin Chang   
  

FrightFest Glasgow 2015 Review: 88, Two Women, One Body

In British bingo, if the number 88 comes up, the caller will shout, "Two fat ladies!", as a conventional code for the two figures' pictographic appearance. Similarly the title of April Mullen's 88 represents a conundrum in need of decoding:... More »
By Anton Bitel   
  

Frightfest Glasgow 2015 Review: THE ATTICUS INSTITUTE Examines A Harrowing Legacy

Straddling the grey area between found footage and faux documentary, The Atticus Institute purports to investigate the events leading to the sudden closure of an underfunded centre for parapsychological research in 1976, and the disappearance, maybe even demise, of its... More »
By Anton Bitel   
  
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