Everything is pretty ordinary in The Measure of a Man. As the title implies, the film follows one simple man through his ordinary life as he struggles to get a job. The film’s direction and script are however far from being simplistic, creating an experience that will haunt you for a while. As soon as the movie opens, you get […]Read more ›
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With the release of his latest movie, American filmmaker Gus Van Sant’s glory days – more particularly radical, unapologetic works such as Elephant, Gerry and Last Days – seem to suddenly be distant memories: taking us for a walk in the forest where he loses both himself and his audience, it almost looks like the trees were casting a shadow […]Read more ›
With its black and white cinematography and its simple premise – a constable and his son are looking for a runaway gipsy slave -, Aferim! feels like a transposition of a vintage western set in 19th century Romania. Throughout most of the movie, we follow the two protagonists’ straightforward adventure: We see them riding horses through hills and forests, stop […]Read more ›
Following the striking and already cult vampire western A Girl Walks Home Alone At Night, here comes another promising debut featuring a young Iranian woman as its center character. Shot guerilla-style in Tehran, Paradise follows Hanieh (Dorna Dibaj), a 25-year old schoolteacher who tries to be transferred to a school closer to her home. Whether she deals with frustrating bureaucracy, […]Read more ›
Son of Saul’s opening shot is fixed and blurry. A character walks into the frame, gets closer and becomes focused. From there, the camera will follow him with a long sequence shot. Laszlo Nemes’s first film establishes its marks right away, with rigorous direction, realism and pertinence. The Hungarian filmmaker used an almost documentary-like approach to tackle his difficult, traumatic […]Read more ›
Shot in black and white in an almost square format and clocking at just over an hour, El Movimiento is an experimental work offering a dark look at the unification of Argentina. Set in 19th century in the desolated pampa, Benjamín Naishtat’s movie opens with a cruel sequence where a handful of soldiers blow up some old man’s head with […]Read more ›
With its rather bare setting mostly focusing on 4 family members gathered in a house surrounded by sugar cane plantations, Land and Shade could easily be just a play and shouldn’t be recommended to anybody suffering from claustrophobia. The fact that, despite its assumed minimalism, César Augusto Acevedo’s movie has garnered quite a few movie awards – including Cannes’ Critics […]Read more ›
Gaspar Noé’s latest much talked-about provocation isn’t exactly what you might expect: it isn’t just a 2-hour skin flick; it is a beautiful film. There are no improbable stunts here, no plumber coming to fix some girl’s pipes. There are lots of sex – some real, some fake – graced by beautiful bodies and an elegant light. And, to be frank, […]Read more ›
Amusing, disturbing and quite surreal, Yorgos Lanthimos’ The Lobster is a very singular work delivering an incisive portrait of a totalitarian society. Supported by a cold, meticulous direction and subtle performances, Mr. Lanthimos’ work clearly takes a stand against normality, both surprising and frightening spectators. The movie is set in a rehabilitation center for bachelors located in a grand hotel. During their […]Read more ›
Arriving on our screens after having enjoyed quite a glorious run in South America, this big budget Bolivian/Mexican production sheds light on a dark era known as Operation Condor where Bolivia, Argentina, Chile, Paraguay and Uruguay joined force to eradicate communism, imprisoning, torturing and executing militants, thinkers and innocents alike. Alternating between present time and flashbacks, Olvidados (Forgotten) uses a Bolivian […]Read more ›
For her sophomore directing effort, the French actress Mélanie Laurent (Inglorious Basterds, Enemy) explores once again relationships between women, this time focusing on a couple teenage girls. Charlie (Joséphine Japy) is a studious and introverted 17-year old girl raised in a broken home. While she seems to see her young mother (Isabelle Carré – Romantics Anonymous, Beautiful Memories) almost as […]Read more ›
While there have been quite a few films about the long and perilous expedition that migrating illegally to the US is, The Golden Dream (La Jaula de Oro) certainly hits our screens at the right time, the current migrating situation in Europe – mostly Iraqis, Syrians, Africans fleeing their respective countries for Germany, France, Spain and the UK. – making […]Read more ›
Watching Matias Pineiro’s The Princess of France just reminded how much I dislike modern theater. I know I’m probably going to anger quite a few of you out there, but I usually find these plays vain, pretentious and lacking scope. To clarify this, I should add that I’m not against theater as a medium, enjoying French playwrights such as Moliere […]Read more ›