Cannes 2015 Review: CAROL, Tremendously Accomplished, Yet Cold

Todd Haynes' Carol is an objectively beautiful film. It is exquisitely acted, hauntingly shot and meticulously well-designed. And it left me surprisingly cold. The same-sex melodrama presents an interesting case where form and content match up a little too well.... More »
By Ben Croll   
  

Cannes 2015 Review: GREEN ROOM Doesn't Pull A Single Punch

Some gigs really aren't worth taking. That's a maxim that the members of broke touring punk band Ain't Rights probably haven't heard of and certainly aren't going to adhere to when they get offered $350 to play a backwater skinhead... More »
By Ryland Aldrich   
  

Cannes 2015 Review: IRRATIONAL MAN, Woody Allen's Maudlin, Disappointing Trifle

Let's make this perfectly clear - Woody Allen, director, is one of the most unique and prolific talents in the history of cinema. Every year we get a film on schedule, often a chatty and intellectually rich ensemble piece... More »
By Jason Gorber   
  

Review: GOOD KILL Intelligently Examines Drone Warfare

"Keep compartmentalizing" is a piece of advice from a commanding officer to his ace pilot. This is darkly humourous, intelligent screenwriting because these drone-piloting soldiers spend 12 hours a day literally inside a box, albeit an air-conditioned one filled... More »
By Kurt Halfyard   
  

Review: Téchiné's IN THE NAME OF MY DAUGHTER, Another Strong Outing From The Master Of Psychological Dramas

Based on the memoir of Renée Le Roux about the disappearance of her daughter Agnes, André Téchiné, the French master of subtle psychological dramas, tackles real life intrigue with In the Name of My Daughter. The Le Roux case held... More »
By Dustin Chang   
  

Review: THE D TRAIN, No Direction Home

Dan Landsman is not a thin fellow. Also, none of Dan's old school friends in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA, want to hang out with him anymore. Dan embraces the former, but the latter gnaws away at him. He yearns to hang... More »
By Peter Martin   
  

Review: SKIN TRADE Trades On Ensemble Face-Kicking

Thirty years after its explosive heyday, Dolph Lundgren is here to show us how little action movies and muscle-led cinema have evolved. And yet, we're meant to think that they have. In 1985, Rambo won the Vietnam War. It was a... More »
By Jim Tudor   
  

Review: APPARITION, An Angry Ride Leads To Ghostly, Everlasting Loss

Truthfully, I was never scared by anything that happens in Apparition, a film by Quinn Saunders that is now hitting home video. But I was unsettled, at times, and disquieted, occasionally, by the atmosphere of a big empty house and... More »
By Peter Martin   
  

Stanley Film Fest 2015 Review: COOTIES Is Icky, Side-Splitting Fun

After a taxing day of travel, my fellow festival brethen and I were already exhausted, but looking for some big flick fun. The Stanley's opening night film, Cooties sold out. Thankfully, there was a press screening and the opening night... More »
  

Review: A FOOL, A Stark Reminder That In China Nice Guys Finish Last

Based on Hu Xuewen's novel Running Moonlight, actor Chen Jianbin's directorial debut is a harsh reminder of humanity's predatory nature, as an honest farmer's efforts to help a young homeless man set of a chain of calamitous events.Chen Jianbin was... More »
By James Marsh   
  

Stanley Film Festival 2015 Review: SUN CHOKE Brings Ambiguous Back

Writer-director Ben Cresciman's second feature, Sun Choke, premiered at the Stanley Film Festival this weekend. It's a film that's not easy to describe: imagine a fever dream sprung from the mind of an unreliable narrator that is both a murderer,... More »
  

Udine 2015 Review: THE WICKED, An Effectively Thrilling Exercise In Low-Budget Filmmaking

Bolstered and braced by a wonderfully sinister performance from the relatively unknown young South Korean actress Park Ju-hui, Yoo Young-sun's The Wicked is a slow-paced but nicely modulated and effectively gripping exercise in low-budget indie filmmaking. Shot in a mere... More »
By Patryk Czekaj   
  

Udine 2015 Review: MAKEUP ROOM Makes Perfect Use Of Its Very Limited Location

Genuinely funny, touching, and cleverly realized, Morikawa Kei's Makeup Room (メイクルーム) plays like a modest but deft combination between a chamber-like dramedy and well-observed ensemble piece that derives most of its energy from a wealth of enthusiastic performances and witty... More »
By Patryk Czekaj   
  

Review: WELCOME TO ME, Comedy That Bleeds Into Trauma

Kristen Wiig has been enjoying a lengthy run of success since leaving Saturday Night Live in 2012. Her humor is punctuated by awkward, uncomfortable stares, or lines delivered with more weight -- loneliness, sadness, regret -- than they seem to... More »
By Teresa Nieman   
  

Review: IRIS, Albert Maysles' Last Solo Film

Meet Iris. The most precious 91-year-old on Earth. Now meet Iris, the most charming documentary about the most darling 91-year-old on Earth. (Note: Iris is now 93, which means this cover girl is still en vogue.)  Iris is directed by... More »
By Chase Whale   
  

Hot Docs 2015 Review: UNBRANDED, Wild, Wild Horses Couldn't Drag Us Away

Four Texas A&M University graduates choose one hell of a in-between-school-and-real-life adventure, opting to adopt a dozen or so wild mustangs, train them, and make a 3000 mile journey from the Arizona-Mexican border up the spine of former 'wild west'... More »
By Kurt Halfyard   
  

Tribeca 2015 Review: MAGGIE, An Elegant Zombie Melodrama

Geoff Gilmore, chief creative officer of the Tribeca Film Festival, in his introduction to the world premiere of Maggie, the first feature by Henry Hobson - starring some guy you may have heard of named Arnold Schwarzenegger - called the... More »
  

Night Visions 2015 Review: I AM THOR, From Naked Waiter To Rock Star To Retirement And Back Again

He was a bodybuilder, a naked waiter, and a Las Vegas showman before he became a rock star. Above all else, though, Jon Mikl Thor has always been a modest, 'never say die' entertainer, as made apparent in I Am... More »
By Peter Martin   
  

Review: ADULT BEGINNERS, An Excellent Cast In A Movie That's Not

One thing I know for sure: Adult Beginners is not a good movie. Here's the cast: Nick Kroll (Kroll Show), Rose Byrne (Neighbors) and Bobby Cannavale (Chef), with supporting roles from gifted comedians Joel McHale (Community), Mike Birbiglia (Sleepwalk with... More »
By Chase Whale   
  

Calgary Underground 2015 Review: NIGHT OWLS, Kitchen Sink Drama Both Tender & Brutal

In many ways, a lot of American Indie cinema is becoming as formulaic and predictable as its big budget cousins. Be it a Baumbach jam, a Swanberg swing or a doozie from the Duplass', there are clear expectations that... More »
By Jason Gorber   
  
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