Friday, January 31, 2020

ENG 281/282: 2020s


Ammonite (UK/Australia/USA: Francis Lee, 2020: 120 mins)

Hudson, David. "Francis Lee's Ammonite." The Current (September 15, 2020)

Another Round (Denmark/Sweden/Netherlands: Thomas Vinterberg, 2020: 117 mins)

Burris, Greg. "Another Round: Drinking (and Dancing) in the Age of Apocalypse." Film International (January 16, 2021)

Heeney, Alex, et al. "Are Men Ok? Masculinity, Mental Health, & Addiction in Another Round and Oslo, August 31st." Seventh Row (December 15, 2020) 

Antebellum (Delayed Release)

Breznican, Anthony. "Black Storytellers Are Using Horror to Battle Hate." Vanity Fair (August 3, 2020) ["After Get Out, movies such as Antebellum, the upcoming Candyman retelling, and other tales of terror and the macabre are part of a cultural exorcism centuries in the making."]

Beans (Canada: Tracey Deer, 2020: 92 mins)

Benchetrit, Jenna. "Inspired by the Oka Crisis, Tracey Deer hopes her new film Beans will change perspectives." CBC (July 27, 2021) 

Candyman (Canada/USA: Nia DaCosta, 2020: )

Bastién, Angelica Jade. "Candyman is a Soulless, Didactic Reimagining." Vulture (August 25, 2021)

Breznican, Anthony. "Black Storytellers Are Using Horror to Battle Hate." Vanity Fair (August 3, 2020) ["After Get Out, movies such as Antebellum, the upcoming Candyman retelling, and other tales of terror and the macabre are part of a cultural exorcism centuries in the making."]

City Hall (USA: Frederick Wiseman, 2020: 292 mins)

Edwards, Lydia and Fred Wiseman. "Documenting Democracy: Fred Wiseman’s City Hall." Open Source (November 19, 2020) ["What Fred Wiseman found in Boston City Hall is not what he was looking for. The master of documentary film is famous for his almost innocent camera eye that unlocks visual drama in big institutions — the New York Public Library, the Paris Opera, or in his early days: Bridgewater State Mental Hospital in 1960s Massachusetts. So why not finally get inside the modern brick and concrete fortress of official life in his hometown, and see what’s going on in the faces, the meeting rooms, the tone of voice in local affairs. What he found was simpler than all that. It was the un-Trump in the un-Washington. An almost astonishing civility, good humor, what looks like good faith in the hundreds of negotiations every day that keep a community going, and growing."]

Coronation (Ai Weiwei, 2020: 113 mins)

Johnson, Ian. "From Ai Weiwei, a Portrait of Wuhan’s Draconian Covid Lockdown." The New York Times (August 21, 2020)

Crip Camp (USA: James LeBrecht and Nicole Newnham, 2020: 106 mins)

LeBrecht, Jim and Nicole Newnham. "Crip Camp Directors on the Overlooked Disability Rights Movement." At Liberty (July 30, 2020) ["July 26th marked the 30th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act, or the ADA. The ADA is a federal law that requires businesses, employers, public facilities, schools, and transportation agencies to make accommodations for disabled people, and helps weed out basic discrimination. When President George HW Bush signed the ADA into law in 1990, it was one of the most comprehensive pieces of civil rights legislation in American history.  But the disability rights movement didn’t begin or end with the ADA. In spite of the law’s existence, Americans with disabilities still face discrimination and other barriers to equal rights and opportunities.
Today, even though nearly 50 percent of Americans live with at least one disability, few know the history of the fight for disability rights. With Crip Camp, a new documentary on Netflix, filmmakers Jim LeBrecht and Nicole Newnham fill in some of that history through the personal and political stories that started the rise of a movement."]

The Devil All the Time (USA: Antonio Campos, 2020: 138 mins)

Hudson, David. "Borderline Week." The Current (September 17, 2020)

Dinner in America (USA: Adam Rehmeier, 2020: 106 mins)

Disclosure (USA: Sam Feder, 2020: 108 mins)

Gardner, Caden Mark. "Disclosure and Pursuing the Trans Film Image." Reverse Shot (June 19, 2020)

The Empty Man (USA/South Africa: David Prior, 2020: 137 mins)

Tafoya, Scout. "The Unloved, Pt. 93: The Empty Man." Roger Ebert (September 1, 2021) ["Whatever else is true of David Prior, "The Empty Man" is one of the most promising debuts in the last several years of American cinema. I greatly look forward to what he concocts next, whether I agree with its thesis or not. I enjoyed that while watching "The Empty Man" I was guessing the entire time what would happen next, and in every case I was proven wrong. That is rare enough without factoring in his considerable formal abilities. I like this movie a lot, and I’m ready for Halloween to get here so we can all kvetch about our shared need to be scared by the unreal instead of the very real."]

High Ground (Australia: Stephen Maxwell Johnson, 2020: 104 mins)

Johnson, Stephen Maxwell. "High Ground – Director Stephen Maxwell Johnson." Film School Radio (May 12, 2021) ["In Stephen Maxwell Johnson’s powerful new film, High Ground, a young indigenous man, Gutjuk, teams up with a World War I soldier / ex-sniper, Travis, to track down the dangerous Bayawara, a fierce warrior in the Territory, who is also his uncle. As Travis and Gutjuk journey through the outback they begin to earn each other’s trust, but when the truths of Travis’ past actions are suddenly revealed, it is he who becomes the hunted. High Ground was conceived as a story that would challenge accepted notions of the colonial settlement of Australia. High Ground is a powerful human drama, instilled with a strong sense of hope and fear, a story of treachery, heroism, sacrifice, freedom and love, misguided beliefs, an unequal struggle for power, and grief. But above all it is a story about the finding of one’s roots. Director Stephen Maxwell Johnson joins us for a conversation on the shameful treatment the indigenous peoples of Australia have suffered under, the denial of that history and why it was so important that High Ground reflect the human drama, instilled with a strong sense of hope and fear, but above all a story about the finding of one’s roots."]

Holler (USA: Nicole Riegel, 2020: 90 mins)

Hunters (Amazon Prime: David Weil, 2020)

Jerri, Alexander. "Moment of Truth: Gently, Gently Hunters." This is Hell! (February 27, 2020) [On the Amazon TV show]

I Care a Lot (USA/UK: J. Blakeson, 2020: 118 mins)

I'm Thinking of Ending Things Soon (USA: Charlie Kaufman, 2020: 134 mins)

Hudson, David. "Charlie Kaufman's Antkind." Current (July 13, 2020)

Invisible Man (Australia/USA/Canada/UK: Leigh Whannell, 2020: 124 mins)

McMillan, Candice. "How Trump and #metoo Have Scared Us Into the New Decade." Chaz's Journal (March 10, 2020)

Jumbo (France/Belgium/Luxembourg: Zoé Wittock, 2020: 93 mins)

Complex, Valerie. "Stanning the Ancients." Letterboxd (June 20, 2020) ["Valerie Complex probes the intersection of Greco-Roman mythology and queer experience in Portrait of a Lady on Fire, The Neon Demon, Jumbo and Midsommar."]

Kingdom of Silence (USA: Rick Rowley, 2020: 101 mins)

Rowley, Rick and Lawrence Wright. "Kingdom of Silence: 2 Years After Khashoggi Murder, New Film Explores Deadly U.S.-Saudi Alliance." Democracy Now (October 1, 2020) ["Two years ago, in a story that shocked the world, Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi entered the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul for marriage documents and was never seen again. It was later revealed that Khashoggi — a Saudi insider turned critic and Washington Post columnist — was murdered and dismembered by a team of Saudi agents at the direct order of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman. We speak with a friend of Khashoggi and with the director of a new documentary, “Kingdom of Silence,” that tracks not only Khashoggi’s brutal murder and the rise of MBS, but also the decades-long alliance between the United States and Saudi Arabia. “What drew me into this story is Jamal was one of our own,” says director Rick Rowley. “When one of our colleagues is killed, it falls on all of us as journalists to try to do what we can to rescue their story from the forces that would impose silence on it.”"]

Los Conductos (France/Colombia/Brazil: Camilo Restrepo, 2020: 70 mins)

Romney, Jonathan. "Los conductos is a swirling, cryptic journey into a hellish Medellín night." Sight and Sound (April 14, 2021) [" Camilo Restrepo’s stunning debut mixes up myth, fantasy and contemporary Colombian social reality to potent effect."]

Lovers Rock (UK: Steve McQueen, 2020: 70 mins)

López, Cristina Álvarez & Adrian Martin. "The Thinking Machine #45: Roll and Rock." de Film Krant (December 16, 2020) 

Mama Weed (France/Belgium: Jean-Paul Salomé, 2020: 104 mins)

Bozdech, Betsy, et al. "Movie of the Week July 16, 2021: Mama Weed." Alliance of Women Film Journalists July 11, 2020) 

Mank (USA: David Fincher, 2020: 132 mins)

Connor, J.D. "Put Some 'Mank' on It." Los Angeles Review of Books (May 29, 2021)

Ma Rainey's Black Bottom (USA: George C. Wolfe, 2020: 94 mins)

Grier, Miles P. "Why (and How) August Wilson Marginalized White Antagonism: A Note for Hollywood Producers." Los Angeles Review of Books (April 12, 2021)

My Octopus Teacher (South Africa: Philippa Ehrlich and James Reed, 2020: 84 mins)

Like Stories of Old. "The Problem of Other Minds – How Cinema Explores Consciousness." (Posted on Youtube: May 31, 2018) ["How have films engaged the problem of other minds? In this video essay, I discuss cinematic explorations into consciousness in the context of the cognitive revolution that has challenged many of the basic assumptions about what was for a long time believed to be a uniquely human trait." Uses Frans de Waal's book Are We Smart Enough to Know How Smart Animals Are?: "Hailed as a classic, Are We Smart Enough to Know How Smart Animals Are? explores the oddities and complexities of animal cognition--in crows, dolphins, parrots, sheep, wasps, bats, chimpanzees, and bonobos--to reveal how smart animals really are, and how we've underestimated their abilities for too long. Did you know that octopuses use coconut shells as tools, that elephants classify humans by gender and language, and that there is a young male chimpanzee at Kyoto University whose flash memory puts that of humans to shame? Fascinating, entertaining, and deeply informed, de Waal's landmark work will convince you to rethink everything you thought you knew about animal--and human--intelligence."]

The Nest (UK/Canada: Sean Durkin, 2020: 107 mins)

Hudson, David. "Borderline Week." The Current (September 17, 2020)

Night of the Kings (France/Côte d'Ivoire/Canada/Senegal: Philippe Lacôte, 2020: 93 mins)

Carpenter, Max. "Whatever Gets You Through the Night: Night of the Kings." Reverse Shot (December 29, 2020)

On the Rocks (USA: Sofia Coppola, 2020: 96 mins)

Heath, Roderick. "On the Rocks (2020)." Film Freedonia (December 1, 2020)

Our Own (Les Notres) (Canada: Jeanne LeBlanc, 2020: 103 mins)

Bozdech, Betsy, et al. "MOVIE OF THE WEEK June 18, 2021- LES NOTRES." Alliance of Women Film Journalists (June 13, 2021)

The Plot Against America (HBO: Ed Burns and David Simon, 2020: 360 mins)

Tallerico, Brian. "The Plot Against America." Roger Ebert (March 13, 2020)

Quo Vadis, Aida? (Bosnia and Herzegovina, et al: Jasmila Zbanic, 2020: 101 mins)

"Quo Vadis, Aida?" Seventh Row (Archive of Resources)

Queen's Gambit (Netflix: Scott Frank and Allen Scott, 2020: 393 mins)

Oladipo, Gloria. "The Missed 'Magical Negro' Trope in The Queen’s Gambit." Bitch Media (November 25, 2020)

Rebuilding Paradise (USA: Ron Howard, 2020: 90 mins)

Else, Lincoln and Ron Howard. "On the Documentary Rebuilding Paradise." The Cinematography Podcast (August 10, 2020) ["Oscar-winning director Ron Howard talks about directing his first documentary, Rebuilding Paradise, about the devastating Camp fire that completely wiped out the town of Paradise, California on November 8, 2018. The film follows the people in community over time as they deal with the tragedy and begin rebuilding. Directing a documentary was a new experience for Ron, and he felt a personal connection to the town- his mother-in-law had lived in Paradise. Ron Howard and Brian Grazer’s production company, Imagine, had wanted to start producing documentaries and they sent out a crew to begin shooting just one week after the fire. Ron picked up some new skills while working on the unscripted project. He had to learn how to let the cameras follow the flow of the conversation, and to be minimalist in covering every possible angle. The experience has led him to make directorial choices in his scripted work that are more verité. Director of photography Lincoln Else worked closely with Ron and the Imagine production team, and developed a unified visual language for Rebuilding Paradise that he communicated with the other shooters. Lincoln learned documentary filmmaking at an early age, loading 16mm mags and assisting his father, documentarian and professor Jon Else. He likes a very simple hand-held style, opting to just put a camera on his shoulder in order to be as reactive as possible. Though footage from many different news sources and people’s personal videos was used, the bulk of the interview content in Rebuilding Paradise was “fly on the wall” style."]

Residue (USA: Merawi Gerima, 2020: 90 mins)

Wanzo, Rebecca. "Black Obliteration around the Corner: The Gentrification Film." Film Quarterly 75.1 (Fall 2021)

Shirley (USA: Josephine Decker, 2020: 107 mins)

Brody, Richard. "Shirley: Josephine Decker’s Furious Melodrama of Shirley Jackson’s Life and Art." The New Yorker (June 4, 2020)

Hudson, David. "Josephine Decker's Shirley." Current (January 30, 2020)

Small Axe (UK: Steve McQueen, 2020: 5 sixty minute episodes)

Heeney, Alex, et al. "Steve McQueen's Small Axe." The Seventh Row #72 (December 30, 2020) ["To cover Steve McQueen’s ambitious Small Axe series, we have assembled one of our most ambitious episodes of the year. We discuss each film (or episode?) of McQueen’s series and how they work together to form a cohesive whole."]

The Social Dilemma (USA: Jeff Orlowski, 2020: 94 mins)

Harris, Tristan. "Social Dilemma Star on Fighting the Disinformation Machine." Berkeley Talks (February 26, 2021) ["In this episode of Berkeley Talks, Tristan Harris, co-founder of the Center for Humane Technology, former Google design ethicist and star of the 2020 Netflix documentary The Social Dilemma, discusses how fake news spreads faster than factual news — a result of citizens sharing emotionally resonant misinformation or disinformation, often weaponized for profit and propaganda purposes, while tech algorithms amplify the viral spread."]

Sophie Jones (USA: Jessie Barr, 2020: 85 mins)

Chen, Yun-Hua. "Embodying Coming of Age: An Interview with Jessie Barr on Sophie Jones." Film International (April 8, 2021)

Sugar Daddy (Canada: Wendy Morgan, 2020: 99 mins) 

Merin, Jennifer, et al. "Movie of the Week: Sugar Daddy." AWFJ (March 28, 2021) 

Tenet (USA/UK: Christopher Nolan, 2020: 150 mins)

Beyl, Cameron. "Christopher Nolan: Tenet." The Directors Series (August 22, 2022)

Tesla (USA: Michael Almereyda, 2020: 102 mins)

Dorian, M.J. "Nikola Tesla & the Paradox of Genius." Creative Codex #5 (May 9, 2019) ["Nikola Tesla's unique genius is the stuff of fantasy; he electrified the world, feuded with Thomas Edison, invented a death ray, and caused an earthquake in Manhattan. In this episode we try to untangle the paradox of Nikola Tesla's life: how can a man of unrivaled genius change the world but die a hermit with no money to his name?"]

 Tafoya, Scout. "Limits Don't Exist: Michael Almereyda on Tesla." Roger Ebert (August 18, 2020)

Time (USA: Garrett Bradley, 2020: 81 mins)

Hudson, David. "Garrett Bradley's Time." The Current (October 8, 2020)

Tove (Finland/Sweden: Zaida Bergroth, 2020: 116 mins)

Bozdech, Betsy, et al. "Movie of the Week: Tove." Alliance of Women Journalists (June 4, 2021) ["It’s no surprise by now to discover that the private lives of the authors and artists behind some of the world’s most beloved children’s books were anything but calm (or G-rated). But it’s always fascinating to get a glimpse into the events, people, and places that shaped them and led to their iconic creations, and Zaida Bergroth’s Tove — which stars the excellent Alma Pöysti as Finnish Moomin mastermind Tove Jansson — is no exception."]

Tragic Jungle (Mexico/France/Colombia: Yulene Olaizola, 2020)

Hudson, David. "Yulene Olaizola’s Tragic Jungle." The Current (October 6, 2020)

Uppercase Print (Romania: Radu Jude, 2020: 128 mins)

Emmerzael, Hugo. "Reaching Into History: Radu Jude on Uppercase Print and The Exit of the Trains." Senses of Cinema #94 (April 2020)

Violation (Canada: Dusty Mancinelli and Madeleine Sims-Fewer, 2020: 107 mins)

Cleaver, Sarah Kathryn and Mary Wild. "Promising Young Woman & Violation." Projections (May 12, 2021) ["Mary and Sarah review two recently released rape revenge films; Emerald Fennell's highly anticipated Promising Young Woman (2020) and Madeleine Sims-Fewer's Violation (2020) which several listeners recommended to us."]

Mobarak, Jared. "Violation Tells a Story with Cross-Cutting Precision." The Film Stage (September 13, 2020)

Vivos (Germany: Ai Weiwei, 2020: 112 mins)

Weiwei, Ai. "Chinese Artist & Filmmaker Ai Weiwei on State Violence from Mexico to Hong Kong to Xinjiang." Democracy Now (January 28, 2020) ["In 2014, 43 students from Ayotzinapa Rural Teachers’ College disappeared after they were abducted in Iguala, Mexico. More than five years after their disappearance, the families of the students are still fighting for justice. The story is the subject of a stunning new documentary by the world-renowned Chinese artist and activist Ai Weiwei. The film, “Vivos,” follows the families of the disappeared students in their daily lives as they grapple with the absence of their loved ones and attempt to hold the Mexican government accountable for their disappearance. We sat down with Ai Weiwei earlier this week at the Sundance Film Festival in Park City, Utah, to speak with him about “Vivos,” why his next project will focus on Hong Kong, and more."]

Who Killed Malcolm X? (USA: Netflix series, 2020: 6 episodes)

Harris, Shayla, Abdur-Rahman Muhammad and Ilyasah Shabazz. "Malcolm X’s Daughter Ilyasah Shabazz on Her Father’s Legacy & the New Series Who Killed Malcolm X?" Democracy Now (February 21, 2020) ["Fifty-five years ago today, Malcolm X was assassinated. The civil rights leader was shot to death on February 21, 1965, at the Audubon Ballroom in New York City. He was only 39 years old. Details of his assassination remain disputed to this day. Earlier this month, Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance said he was considering reopening the investigation, just days after a new documentary series about the assassination was released on Netflix called “Who Killed Malcolm X?” It makes the case that two of the three men who were convicted for Malcolm X’s murder are actually innocent and that his uncaught killers were four members of a Nation of Islam mosque in Newark, New Jersey. We are joined by Ilyasah Shabazz, one of six daughters of Malcolm X, who was just 2 years old when her father was assassinated in front of her, her siblings and her mother. We also speak with award-winning author Abdur-Rahman Muhammad, independent scholar, historian, journalist, writer and activist, who is widely regarded as one of the most respected authorities on the life and legacy of Malcolm X and is featured in the new documentary series, and Shayla Harris, a producer for the series and an award-winning filmmaker and journalist."]

Zola (USA: Janicza Bravo, 2020: 86 mins)

Hudson, David. "Janicza Bravo's Zola." The Current (June 30, 2021)


After Yang (USA: Kogonada, 2021: 96 mins)

Wang, Ian. "He, Robot: After Yang Gets Lost in Its Metaphor." The Baffler (March 31, 2022)

Ahed's Knee (France/Israel/Germany: Nadav Lapid, 2021: 109 mins)

Ehrlich, David. "Filmmaker Searches for Hope in the People of His Irredeemable Homeland." IndieWire (July 7, 2021)

Hudson, David. "Nadav Lapid's Ahed's Knee." Current (July 8, 2021)

Annette (France/Mexico/USA/Switzerland/Belgium/Japan/Germany: Leos Carax, 2021: 139 mins)

Hudson, David. "Leos Carax's Annette." Current (July 7, 2021)

Azor (Switzerland/France/Argentina: Andreas Fontana, 2021: 100 mins)

Anderson, Melissa. "Azor: In Andreas Fontana’s debut feature, Dirty War and dirty business." 4 Columns (September 10, 2021)

Barb and Star Go to Vista Del Mar (USA: Josh Greenbaum, 2021: 107 mins)

Greenbaum, Josh and Guillermo Del Toro. "Barb and Star Go to Vista Del Mar." The Director's Cut #299 (2021) ["Director Josh Greenbaum discusses his new film, Barb & Star Go to Vista Del Mar, with fellow director Guillermo del Toro in a spoiler-filled virtual Q&A. The film tells the story of best friends Barb and Star, who leave their small Midwestern town for the first time to vacation in Vista Del Mar, Florida and soon find themselves tangled up in adventure, love, and a villain’s evil plot to murder the entire town."]

Becoming Cousteau (USA: Liz Garbus, 2021: 93 mins)

Garbus, Liz. "Becoming Cousteau." Film School Radio (October 20, 2021)  ["Adventurer, filmmaker, inventor, author, unlikely celebrity and conservationist: For over four decades, Jacques-Yves Cousteau and his explorations under the ocean became synonymous with a love of science and the natural world. As he learned to protect the environment, he brought the whole world with him, sounding alarms more than 50 years ago about the warming seas and our planet’s vulnerability. In BECOMING COUSTEAU, from National Geographic Documentary Films, two-time Academy Award®-nominated filmmaker LIZ GARBUS takes an inside look at Cousteau and his life, his iconic films and inventions, and the experiences that made him the 20th century’s most unique and renowned environmental voice — and the man who inspired generations to protect the Earth. Director Liz Garbus (What Happened, Miss Simone?, All In: The Fight for Democracy, The Farm: Angola, USA) joins us for a look back at one of the 20th centuries most influential and consequential figures and one of the early advocates for preserving and protecting mother ocean."]

Belfast (UK: Kenneth Branagh, 2021: 97 mins)

Hudson, David. "Belfast and Yuni Top Toronto Awards." The Current (September 20, 2021)

Benedetta (France/Belgium/Netherlands: Paul Verhoeven, 2021: 131 mins)

Hudson, David. "Paul Verhoeven and Benedetta."The Current (December 7, 2021)

Benediction (UK/USA: Terence Davies, 2021: 137 mins)

Hudson, David. "Terence Davies and Benediction." The Daily (September 16, 2021)

Bergman Island (France/Belgium/Germany/Sweden/Mexico: Mia Hansen-Løve, 2021: 113 mins)

Merin, Jennifer, et al. "Movie of the Week: Bergman Island." Alliance of Women Film Journalists (October 9, 2021)  

The Beta Test (USA: Jim Cummings and PJ McCabe, 2021: 93 mins)

Bowen, Chuck. "The Beta Test Is a Livewire Thriller-Slash-Parable About Rechanneled Desire." Slant (November 2, 2021) ["The film is a knowing glimpse at how micro tensions affect macro power plays, from pissing contests between men to sexual violations."]

Bloodsuckers - A Marxist Vampire Comedy (Germany: Julian Radlmaier, 2021: 125 mins) 

Can't Get You Out of My Head (BBC: Adam Curtis, 2021: 6 episodes)

Can't Get You Out of My Head ["Can’t Get You Out of My Head: An Emotional History of the Modern World is a six-part series that explores how modern society has arrived to the strange place it is today. The series traverses themes of love, power, money, corruption, the ghosts of empire, the history of China, opium and opioids, the strange roots of modern conspiracy theories, and the history of Artificial Intelligence and surveillance. The series deals with the rise of individualism and populism throughout history, and the failures of a wide range of resistance movements throughout time and various countries, pointing to how revolution has been subsumed in various ways by spectacle and culture, because of the way power has been forgotten or given away."]

Clara Sola (Sweden/Costa Rica/Belgium: Nathalie Álvarez Mesén, 2021: 106 mins)

C'mon C'mon (USA: Mike Mills, 2021: 108 mins)

Hudson, David. "Mike Mills C'mon C'mon." The Daily (October 4, 2021)

Jake. "C'mon C'mon." Letterboxd (December 6, 2021)

Drive My Car (Japan: Ryûsuke Hamaguchi, 2021: 179 mins)

Hudson, David. "Ryusuke Hamaguchi: 'This Is How We Live Our Lives.'" Current (November 17, 2021)

Earwig (UK/France/Belgium: Lucile Hadžihalilović, 2021: 104 mins)

Taylor, Alison and John Edmond. "This Is Not A Ritual: An Introduction to Lucile Hadžihalilović." Senses of Cinema #102 (August 2022) ["Lucile Hadžihalilović’s films have the structure of allegories. Time after time they are described in terms of surrealism and symbolism, fairy tales, and the shaping of childhood; all rich frameworks for the provision and searching of meaning. Whether with her debut medium-length La bouche de Jean-Pierre (1996), her breakthrough Innocence (2004), its midnight mirror Evolution (2015) or her latest Earwig (2021), Hadžihalilović creates models of nature that appear as simultaneously potential models of society and as cloistered worlds, beholden to their own mysterious logic. These films, when summarised read as fantasy, horror or science fiction, which they are, but when experienced, are slow sensuous works attentive to colour and texture and whose minimalist approach avoids guiding the viewer to specific interpretations and instead allows them to find their own path."]

El Planeta (USA: Amalia Ulman, 2021: 79 mins)

Hudson, David. "Amalia Ulman's El Planeta." The Current (April 28, 2021)

Eternals (USA/UK: Chloé Zhao, 2021: 157 mins)

Jenkins, David. "Eternals." Little White Lies (November 1, 2021)

Fabian: Going to the Dogs (Germany: Dominik Graf, 2021: 176 mins)

Kasman, Daniel. "Close to the Abyss: Dominik Graf Discusses Fabian: Going to the Dogs." Notebook (February 11, 2022)

France (France/Germany/Italy/Belgium: Bruno Dumont, 2021: 133 mins)

Loayza, Beatrice. "Star Power: Bruno Dumont Discusses France." Notebook (December 14, 2021)

The French Dispatch (USA: Wes Anderson, 2021: 108 mins)

Brody, Richard. "The French Dispatch: Wes Anderson’s Most Freewheeling Film." The New Yorker (October 25, 2021)

Meehan, Ryan. "The Death of the Editor: Wes Anderson's The French Dispatch." The Notebook (October 22, 2021)

The Green Knight (USA: David Lowery, 2021: 130 mins)

Acolytes of Horror. "The Green Knight: The Uncanny Horror of Masculinity." (Posted on Youtube: October 29, 2021) [Movie description: "WHEN HONOR WAS EVERYTHING. An epic fantasy adventure based on the timeless Arthurian legend, The Green Knight tells the story of Sir Gawain, King Arthur’s reckless and headstrong nephew, who embarks on a daring quest to confront the eponymous Green Knight, a gigantic emerald-skinned stranger and tester of men."]

The Hand of God (Italy: Paolo Sorrentino, 2021: 129 mins)

Hit the Road (Iran: Panah Panahi, 2021: 93 mins)

Hudson, David. "Hit the Road Tops the London Awards." The Daily (October 18, 2021)

Hold Me Tight (France: Mathieu Almaric, 2021: 95 mins)

Almaric, Mathieu and Vicky Kreps. "Hold Me Tight." Film At Lincoln Center Podcast (September 8, 2022) ["Vicky Krieps (Phantom Thread, Bergman Island) gives another riveting performance as Clarisse, a woman on the run from her family for reasons that aren’t immediately clear. Widely renowned as an actor but less well-known here for his equally impressive work behind the camera, Mathieu Amalric’s sixth feature directorial outing—his most ambitious to date—is a virtuosic, daringly fluid portrait of one woman’s fractured psyche. Alternating between Clarisse’s adventures on the road and her abandoned husband Marc (Arieh Worthalter) as he struggles to take care of their children at home, Amalric’s film keeps viewers uncertain as to the reality of what they’re seeing until the final moments of this richly rewarding, moving, and unpredictable portrait of grief."]

The Last Duel (UK/USA: Ridley Scott, 2021: 153 mins)

Flight, Thomas and Tom van der Linden. "The Last Duel." Cinema of Meaning #3 (March 17, 2022) ["Thomas Flight and Tom van der Linden discuss subjectivism, self-delusion, and the struggle for justice in a world of inequal power dynamics, in Ridley Scott’s The Last Duel."]

Last Night in Soho  (UK: Edgar Wright, 2021: 117 mins)

Hudson, David. "Edgar Wright's Last Night in Soho." The Current (October 26, 2021)

The Mauritanian (UK/USA: Kevin McDonald, 2021: 129 mins)

Hollander, Nancy, et al. "The Mauritanian: Film Tells Story of Innocent Man Held at Guantánamo for 14 Years Without Charge." Democracy Now (March 8, 2021) ["A new feature film, “The Mauritanian,” tells the story of Mohamedou Ould Slahi, a Mauritanian man who was held without charge for 14 years at the U.S. military prison at Guantánamo and repeatedly tortured. We speak with Mohamedou Ould Slahi, who says the film is not just about his struggle. “This is not my movie. This is the movie of so many people,” he says. “Some of the people who were kidnapped after 9/11 were tortured to death. They did not have a chance to tell their story.” We also speak with Kevin Macdonald, director of “The Mauritanian”; Nancy Hollander, the lead lawyer for Mohamedou Ould Slahi; and actor Tahar Rahim, whose portrayal of Slahi earned him a Golden Globe nomination."]

Medusa (Brazil: Anita Rocha da Silveira, 2021: 127 mins)

Veneto, Nicole. "Medusa - She's Beautiful and She's Screaming." The Arts Fuse (July 25, 2022) ["Brazilian director Anita Rocha Da Silveira’s latest film is a genre-spliced howl of feminine fury in the face of right-wing Christian conservatism."]

Memoria (Apichatpong Weerasethakul, 2021: 136 mins)

Hudson, David. "Memoria Goes on Tour." The Daily (October 8, 2021)

Moxie (USA: Amy Pohler, 2021: 111 mins)

Merrin, Jennifer, et al. "Movie of the Week: Moxie." Alliance of Women Film Journalists (March 7, 2021)

Night Raiders (Canada/New Zealand: Danis Goulet, 2021: 97 mins)

Mobarak, Jared. "TIFF Review: Night Raiders Draws on Canadian History to Tell a Grounded Sci-Fi Tale." The Film Stage (September 12, 2021)

Nobody (USA: Ilya Naishuller, 2021: 92 mins)

Adejuyigbe, Demi. "Nobody." Letterboxd (April 2, 2021) [Coins the genre classification "impotence thriller."]

She Will (UK: Charlotte Colbert, 2021: 95 mins)

Borden, Carol. "She Will (UK, 2022)." Monstrous Industry (October 10, 2022) ["Director Charlotte Colbert’s She Will begins as an angry film, but does not end as one. Veronica Ghent (Alice Krige) travels with her private nurse, Desi Hatoum (Kota Eberhardt), to a remote estate in the Scottish highlands to recover from a double mastectomy. They travel in a lavishly appointed train with polished wood panel compartments and a private sleeping car. Veronica is a grand dame of the film world, but she is brittle and remote. Her anger is barely restrained behind incarnadine lipstick and a tightly braided and twisted coif. Veronica is curt and rude with Desi, who takes Veronica’s lashing out in stride, familiar with wealthy white people and women grieving the cost of survival. But a deeper anger is revealed over the course of She Will–an anger not just carried for decades, but for centuries."]

Spencer (Germany/Chile/UK/USA: Pablo Larrain, 2021: 111 mins)

Hudson, David. "Pablo Larrain's Spencer." The Daily (September 9, 2021)

The Tragedy of Macbeth (USA: Joel Coen, 2021: 105 mins)

Hudson, David. "Joel Coen’s The Tragedy of Macbeth." Current (September 27, 2021)

Turning Point: 9/11 and the War on Terror (USA: Brian Knappenberger, 2021: 300 mins)

 Knappenberger, Brian and Mohammed Ali Naqvi. "Turning Point: Legacy of the U.S. Response to 9/11 Is Terror, Domestic Surveillance & Drones." Democracy Now (September 9, 2021) ["As this week marks the 20th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks on the World Trade Center in New York City and the Pentagon in Washington, D.C., we look at a new five-part documentary series on Netflix about the attacks and the response from the United States, both at home and abroad. “Turning Point: 9/11 and the War on Terror” features a wide range of interviews with survivors of the attacks, U.S. officials, former CIA members and veterans, as well as soldiers in the Afghanistan National Army, Taliban commanders, and Afghan officials, warlords and civilians. “What we really wanted to do was tell the story not just of what happened that day, but how we got there and where our response to those attacks took us as a country,” says director Brian Knappenberger. We also speak with co-executive producer Mohammed Ali Naqvi, an award-winning Pakistani filmmaker, who says the film was an attempt to go “beyond the binary narrative of good versus evil.”"]

The Velvet Underground (USA: Todd Haynes, 2021: 110 mins)

Hudson, David. "Todd Hayne's The Velvet Underground." Current (July 12, 2021) 

Wheel of Fortune and Fantasy (Japan: Ryûsuke Hamaguchi, 2021: 121)

Hudson, David. "Ryusuke Hamaguchi: 'This Is How We Live Our Lives.'" Current (November 17, 2021)


After Yang (USA: Kogonada, 2022: 96 mins)

Koski, Genevieve, et al. "Bye, Robot Pt. 1 — A.I. Artificial Intelligence." The Next Picture Show #320 (March 15, 2022) ["Kogonada’s new science-fiction film AFTER YANG wrestles with the humanity of artificial beings, and their relationship to humanity, in a way that feels distinctly reminiscent of Steven Spielberg’s 2001 feature A.I. ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE. Both films are highly sympathetic toward the android companions on which they center, but Spielberg’s film, which began life as a Stanley Kubrick endeavor, has a more sour view of humanity… or does it? That’s one of the main questions up for discussion this week as we delve into the complexities and contradictions of A.I., a film with no shortage of discussion points, many of which coalesce around the film’s still-divisive ending."]

---. "Bye, Robot Pt. 2 — After Yang." The Next Picture Show #321 (March 22, 2022) ["Kogonada’s new AFTER YANG plays in many ways like a mirror to Steven Spielberg’s misunderstood android epic A.I. ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE as it explores ideas about human nature through the experiences of an artificial being. It’s also an unusually warm, thematically rich science-fiction film that opens up countless avenues of discussion, a few of which we travel down before bringing AFTER YANG into conversation with Spielberg’s earlier model to consider these stories’ shared features: a disrupted family unit, a journey of discovery, adoption ethics, and rumination on what it means to be human."]

All That Breathes (UK/India/USA: Shaunak Sen, 2022: 97 mins)

Hudson, David. "Shaunak Sen’s All That Breathes." Current (October 18, 2022) ["Shaunak Sen’s All That Breathes arrives in theaters from the festival circuit with an unprecedented track record. It’s the only film to have won best documentary awards at both Sundance and Cannes, and this past weekend, it topped the documentary competition in London. On Monday, the Indie Film Site Network, an alliance of five popular online media outlets that came together at the end of the summer, announced that it’s presenting its inaugural IFSN Advocate Award, “established to highlight one theatrically released indie film each year that illuminates a humanitarian or environmental issue with a singular artistic vision,” to All That Breathes. “Layering urban ecology, spiritual philosophy, politics, and distilled character study, All That Breathes is a remarkable, vital work of cinema,” writes Nick Bradshaw in Sight and Sound."]

Ambulance (USA: Michael Bay, 2022: 136 mins)

Tafoya, Scout. "The Unloved, Part 104: Ambulance." Roger Ebert (August 1, 2022) ["Somehow, it happened. Michael Bay earned a place in the Unloved. He made his best movie and no one liked it and it made no money. Well sir, you're welcome around these parts anytime. Enjoy this look at our premiere vulgarian's attempt to go "straight," and shake your head with me in horror at the culture that said no to a film as electrifying as Ambulance."]

Apollo 10 1/2: A Space Age Childhood (USA: Richard Linklater, 2022: 98 mins)

Hudson, David. "Richard Linklater's Apollo 10 1/2: A Space Age Childhood." The Current (March 24, 2022)

Armageddon Time (USA/Brazil: James Gray, 2022: 114 mins)

Hudson, David. "A Second Look at Armageddon Time." Current (October 31, 2022)

A Wounded Fawn (USA: Travis Stevens, 2022: 91 mins)

Borden Carol. "Unabsolved Transgressions, Surrealism, and a Chorus of Furies: A Wounded Fawn (2022)." The Cultural Gutter (December 22, 2022) ["Travis Stevens’A Wounded Fawn (USA, 2022) is entirely my thing. It’s a nice mix of art house and genre, which is one of my favorite things. It blends fine art—in this case the art of Surrealists (and friends) Leonora Carrington, Remedios Varo and Kati Horna—1970s horror/giallo, Classical Greek tragedy, themes involving snakes and dogs, glorious art and costuming design, saturated colors, and excellent cinematography. It probably has too much gore for many art house audiences and too much looking at paintings and sculpture for a lot of horror fans. I love A Wounded Fawn and maybe even the vision of future movies of that it presents. In short, I would love more thoughtful, creative and fun films that consciously examine generic conventions. Films that playfully bend, blend, or even burst out of increasingly rigid generic film conventions and categorizations—and I don’t just mean “genre” film. I like a movie that sidesteps expectations of not only what a movie should be about, but how a movie should be about it. And A Wounded Fawn successfully makes a serial killer pathetic in comparison to his victims."]

Bodies Bodies Bodies (USA: Halina Reijn, 2022: 94 mins)

Jones, Eileen. "Bodies Bodies Bodies Is a Bad Class Satire and a Boring Film." Jacobin (August 18, 2022) ["Like so many horror films attempting to be subversive, Bodies Bodies Bodies tries to satirize the upper class. But all it delivers are tired, lazy tropes about Gen Z."]

Lyons, Annie. "Messy Play: Halina Reijn skewers our second reality." Letterboxd (August 18, 2022)

Bones and All (Italy/USA: Luca Guadagnino, 2022: 131 mins)

Kushner, Rachel. "Flesheater Blues." Harper's (December 2022)  ["Guadagnino is an artist I’ll confess to having possibly underestimated. I liked his previous films—especially I Am Love, for the way that he portrays the stifling elegance of Milan’s Villa Necchi and the heavenward iconography of the Piazza del Duomo—but perhaps it is my own imaginative failing that I did not see in them the possibility of this one, which is a stunning work of art that seeped in deep and stained my sense of the world with its own hallucinatory version of such. Bones and All captures what it’s like to drift, to be excluded, and to be nonetheless full of life-force, but life-force whose expression can only ever be futile and tragic. Guadagnino perfectly handles social class and alienation, the sort of social atomization that is so terribly American—everyone just out there, without a club, a church, a union, a pastime, without support or a safety net of any kind. (The one “nice” home we see in this movie, decorated with ornate wallpaper and fussy knickknacks, contains a person, an old woman, who is dying, perhaps of a stroke or of a heart attack, alone, on the floor.) Bones and All is an extraordinary document of American psychoanalysis. Guadagnino’s main character, an eighteen-year-old girl named Maren, played by Taylor Russell, is abandoned by her father near the beginning of the film. She sets off by bus to try to find her birth mother, whom she’s never met. She encounters a boy named Lee, played by Timothée Chalamet, equally adrift and lonely, but full of rebellious verve. They circle each other and eventually connect. What constitutes home? the film asks. And what about the trauma that people inherit, and vow not to replicate, and do replicate? (Maren’s mother and Lee’s father have both passed on the same genetic affliction to their children.)"]

McKenna, Steph and Mike Muncer. "Bones and All (2022)." The Evolution of Horror (November 23, 2022) 

Both Sides of the Blade (France: Claire Denis, 2022: 117 mins)

Close (Belgium/Netherlands/France: Lukas Dhont, 2022: 104 mins) 

Dhont, Lukas. "Close — Lukas Dhont's Quietly Powerful Coming-of-Age Movie." MUBI Podcast (April 20, 2023) ["In his Oscar-nominated CLOSE, filmmaker Lukas Dhont uses the sparest dialogue, the gentlest music, and the most pastoral of tell a shattering story about the brutal ways society turns boys into men. We're taking a mid-season break from our series on movie music to bring you this candid interview with Dhont—in which he tells host Rico Gagliano how he writes like a dancer, why this quiet film is intended as a loud political statement, and what it has in common with James Cameron's TITANIC."]

Corsage  (Austria/Luxembourg/Germany: Marie Kreutzer, 2022: 112 mins) 

Hudson, David. "Marie Kreutzer's Corsage." Current (September 28, 2022) ["Vicky Krieps and Marie Kreutzer will be in New York this weekend to take questions about Corsage, their irreverent reimagining of a year or so in the life of Empress Elisabeth of Austria. When Krieps, who won a Best Actress award when the film premiered in the Un Certain Regard program in Cannes, first approached Kreutzer with the idea, “I laughed,” the director told the festival, “and said, ‘What for?,’ but the idea grew like a seed inside me.”"]

Elvis (USA/Australia: Baz Luhrmann, 2022: 160 mins)

Jayamanne, Laleen. "Values of Baz Luhrmann’s Elvis: A Carnival Ride." Senses of Cinema #104 (January 2023) 

The Fabelmans (USA: Steven Spielberg, 2022: 151 mins)

Hudson, David. "Steven Spielberg’s The Fabelmans." The Current (September 15, 2022) ["The trailer for The Fabelmans has put some people off, but there’s an army of critics out there urging you to see it when it opens in a few cities on November 11 before going wide over the Thanksgiving holidays. “Kushner has given his friend’s back story a structure to explore the messy memories and madness that make up most of our childhood and teen years, while also providing him a place to be vulnerable, personal, enraged,” writes Rolling Stone’s David Fear. “You can’t imagine one of them doing this without the other, and not just because it’s inspired by Spielberg’s real-life pain. He finally felt ready, willing, and able to go there.” The Fabelmans “feels like a significant work—maybe the significant work—from an artist who has spent decades as American cinema’s civics professor and great escapist.”"]

Nayman, Adam. "Steven Spielberg Prints the Legend." The Ringer (September 23, 2022) ["The master director’s essayistic, autobiographical film ‘The Fabelmans’ may be little more than a victory lap. Still, no one sees things quite like he can."]

Flux Gourmet (USA/UK/Hungary: Peter Strickland, 2022: 111 mins)

Borden, Carol. "Flux Gourmet (UK 2022)." Monstrous Industry (September 13, 2022) ["Flux Gourmet contains many of Strickland’s pre-occupations: the creation of art; presenting one’s work to an audience; the line between popular art and fine / avant garde art; attempting to access senses that are hard to access through film–here, smell, taste, and a somatic sense of gastric pressure; “Eurosleaze” and “Eurotrash” film, including a nice reference to Danger: Diabolik (1968); almost operatic fashion; and, of course, soundscapes and sound design. It’s all presented in Strickland’s lush, polished visuals; warm, saturated colors; and deep, mesmerizing sound design much of which is created by Strickland’s Sonic Catering Band."]

Ehrlich, David. "Flux Gourmet: Peter Strickland’s Latest Is a Flatulent Satire About the Limits of Good Taste." IndieWire (February 11, 2022)

Glorious (USA: Rebekah McKendry, 2022: 79 mins)

Schnelbach, Leah. "Want a Movie About an Eldritch Glory Hole of Surprising Depth? Try Glorious." Tor (August 24, 2022) ["Mostly I’m glad that Glorious exists. The last few years have seen amazing additions to the horror canon, and the fact that a small movie can be unapologetically gross and splatter-y, but also make a big thematic swing, and mostly work, and find large-scale distribution, makes me very, very happy. Join me in the rest stop bathroom for a non-spoiler review, won’t you?"]

Good Luck to You, Leo Grande (USA: Sophie Hyde, 2022: 97 mins)

Bozdech, Betsy, et al. "Movie of the Week: Good Luck to You, Leo Grande." Alliance of Women Film Journalists (June 12, 2022)

The Gray Man (USA: Anthony Russo and Joe Russo, 2022: 128 mins)

Eggert, Brian. "The Gray Man." Deep Focus Review (July 14, 2022) ["A good action movie is difficult to find. Although dozens are released every year, few have more to offer than some impressive stunts, fast-paced fight choreography, or eye-popping sequences of destruction. They supply the requisite thrills, but once the credits roll, they often fade from memory. The problem isn’t the action; it’s the banal characters. Rarely do action movies give us compelling heroes or villains who make a lasting impression. The Fast and Furious series may provide one over-the-top vehicular extravaganza after another, but its dopey family and one-note baddies couldn’t be less engaging. Sure, the John Wick movies started with a compelling revenge story, but the character’s unwavering composure doesn’t have many dimensions. Invulnerable heroes from the killing machine John Rambo to the infallible Dominic Toretto obliterate their opponents and come away barely dented. By contrast, consider characters such as John McClane in the original Die Hard (1988) or Furiosa in Mad Max: Fury Road (2015) that elevate all the trappings of an entertaining actioner, lending humanity and vulnerability to their heroes. Enduring action movies give their characters a sense of humor or depth of feeling beyond point and shoot. "]

Guillermo Del Toro's Pinocchio (USA/Mexico/France: Guillermo del Toro, 2022: 117 mins)

Hudson, David. "Stop-Motion Animation Legend Mark Gustafson." Current (February 5, 2024)

How to Blow Up a Pipeline (USA: Daniel Goldhaber, 2022: 104 mins)

Barer, Ariella, et al. "How to Blow Up a Pipeline." Screen Slate #23 (April 6, 2023)

Malm, Andrea. How to Blow Up a Pipeline: Learning to Fight in a World on Fire. Verso, 2021. ["The science on climate change has been clear for a very long time now. Yet despite decades of appeals, mass street protests, petition campaigns, and peaceful demonstrations, we are still facing a booming fossil fuel industry, rising seas, rising emission levels, and a rising temperature. With the stakes so high, why haven't we moved beyond peaceful protest? In this lyrical manifesto, noted climate scholar (and saboteur of SUV tires and coal mines) Andreas Malm makes an impassioned call for the climate movement to escalate its tactics in the face of ecological collapse. We need, he argues, to force fossil fuel extraction to stop--with our actions, with our bodies, and by defusing and destroying its tools. We need, in short, to start blowing up some oil pipelines. Offering a counter-history of how mass popular change has occurred, from the democratic revolutions overthrowing dictators to the movement against apartheid and for women's suffrage, Malm argues that the strategic acceptance of property destruction and violence has been the only route for revolutionary change. In a braided narrative that moves from the forests of Germany and the streets of London to the deserts of Iraq, Malm offers us an incisive discussion of the politics and ethics of pacifism and violence, democracy and social change, strategy and tactics, and a movement compelled by both the heart and the mind. Here is how we fight in a world on fire."]

Huesera: The Bone Woman (Mexico-Peru: Michelle Garza Cevera, 2022: 93 mins)

Hundreds of Beavers (USA: Mike Cheslik, 2022: 108 mins)

Kimi (USA: Steven Soderbergh, 2022: 89 mins)

Koski, Genevieve, et al. "No Time to Dye, Pt. 1 — Run Lola Run." The Next Picture Show #318 (March 1, 2022) ["Steven Soderbergh’s new straight-to-streaming movie KIMI wears its many influences on its sleeve, but we saw our inspiration for this week’s pairing in its protagonist’s colorful dyed hair, reminiscent of one of the many eye-popping elements of Tom Tykwer’s 1998 international breakout RUN LOLA RUN. But what really links the two films is the breakneck pace they share as they chase after women trying to achieve an urgent goal on a short deadline. This week we home in on RUN LOLA RUN to parse its interplay of style and substance, and debate how and to what extent this fleet film stumbles over its weighty themes of time, choice, and fate."]

---. "No Time to Dye, Pt. 2 — Kimi." The Next Picture Show #319 (March 8, 2022) ["Steven Soderbergh’s new thriller KIMI is as brisk, stylish, and sure-footed in its approach as Tom Tykwer’s 1998 arthouse hit RUN LOLA RUN, but with a much different set of cinematic goals and references in play. Does KIMI’s spare, simple, stylish approach alchemize into what one of our panelists calls “pure entertainment” that’s “easy as breathing,” or does it leave too many unfilled spaces and narrative holes to trip over? We hash it out before bringing LOLA in to compare the two films’ commitment to brevity and adrenalized filmmaking, how that commitment plays out via their respective soundtracks, and the ways in which each tackles conflict and codependency in relationships."]

Lola (Ireland/UK: Andrew Legge, 2022: 79 mins)

Dixon, Wheeler Winston. "The Future Made and Unmade: Andrew Legge’s LOLA (2021)." Senses of Cinema #108 (January 2024) 

Love Dog (USA: Bianca Lucas, 2022: 84 mins)

Vagenas, Maria Giovanna. "Love Dog: Conversation with Bianca Lucas." Senses of Cinema #103 (October 2022)

Mad Heidi (Switzerland: Johannes Hartmann, 2022: 92 mins)

Borden, Carol. "Mad Heidi (Switzerland, 2022)." Monstrous Industry (June 14, 2023)

Master Gardener (USA: Paul Schrader, 2022: 111 mins)

Sloan, Will. "Master Gardener." Cinema Scope #95 (June 2023)

The Menu (USA: Mark Mylod, 2022: 107 mins)

Sociocinema. "The Menu Explained - What the Cheeseburger Really Means." (Posted on Youtube: 107 mins)

Nocebo (Ireland/UK/Philippines: Lorcan Finegan, 2022: 96 mins)

Borden, Carol. "Ticks, Witchcraft, and Resistance: Nocebo (Ireland / Philippines, 2022)." Cultural Gutter (March 16, 2023) 

Other People's Children (France: Rebecca Zlotowski, 2022: September 4, 2022)

Prey (USA: Dan Trachtenberg, 2022: 100 mins)

Cutter, Jeff and Dan Trachtenberg. "Prey." Clubhouse Conversations (June 3, 2023) ["In this episode, cinematographer Jeff Cutter and director Dan Trachtenberg are joined by interviewer Shelly Johnson, ASC to discuss their work in Prey — the prequel to Predator that follows a young Comanche woman's fight for survival against both human and alien invaders."]

Queens of the Qing Dynasty (Canada: Ashley McKenzie, 2022: 122 mins)

Return to Seoul (France/South Korea: Davy Chou, 2022: 117 mins)

Eggert, Brian. "Return to Seoul." Deep Focus Review (January 24, 2023)

Saint Omer (France: Alice Diop, 2022: 123 mins)
Lifting the veil on "the story of a ghost woman whom nobody knows" and that of a "gradual disappearance to which a mother also subjects her child", Saint Omer works with delicacy on distance and on the prejudices and preconceptions surrounding a crime which goes beyond all comprehension, all the while releasing diffuse clues on the exact nature of its message (racism is very subtly evoked). Its opacity is the strength of this imperious yet cryptic film, which perfectly reflects its troubling protagonist. (Fabien Lemercier)
Balaga, Martin.  "Alice Diop: Director of Saint Omer." Cineuropa (October 9, 2022) ["The French filmmaker delivers a stunner of a movie and a real punch to the heart with her latest effort."]

Lemercier, Fabian. "Saint Omer." Cineuropa (July 9, 2022) ["Documentary-maker Alice Diop ventures into fiction with a sharp, singular and cryptic film exploring the surface and plunging the deepest depths of an infanticide trial."]

Sanctuary (USA: Zachary Wigon, 2022: 96 mins)

Sick of Myself (Norway/Sweden/Denmark: Kristoffer Borgli, 2022: 97 mins)

Borgli, Kristopher. "Sick of Myself." Screen Slate Podcast #25 (April 12, 2023)

The Silent Forest (Germany: Saralisa Volm, 2022: 95 mins)

Verstraten, Peter. "The Exorcism of Sinister Ghosts: Saralisa Volm’s The Silent Forest." Senses of Cinema #105 (May 2023)

Stars at Noon (France/Panama/USA: Claire Denis, 2022: 138 mins)

Hudson, David. "Claire Denis’s Stars at Noon." Current (October 12, 2022) 

Stonewalling (China: Ryuji Otsuka and Huang Ji, 2022: 148 mins)

Korbecka, Maja. "Family as a Film Collective: An interview with Huang Ji and Ryûji Otsuka." Senses of Cinema #105 (May 2023)

Talk to Me (Australia: Michael Philippou and Danny Philippou, 2022: 95 mins)

Kemp, Ella. "Terrifying Twos: Danny and Michael Philippou on Racka energy and Talk To Me." Letterboxd (July 28, 2023)

Philippou, Danny and Michael Philippou. "Talk to Me Interview." Evolution of Horror (August 1, 2023)

The Territory (Brazil/Denmark/USA: Alex Pritz, 2022: 83 mins)

Pritz, Alex. "The Territory." Film School Radio (August 18, 2022) ["In his debut feature documentary THE TERRITORY Alex Pritz provides an immersive look at the tireless fight of the Amazon’s Indigenous Uru-Eu-Wau-Wau people against the encroaching deforestation brought by farmers and illegal settlers. With awe-inspiring cinematography showcasing the titular landscape and richly textured sound design, the film takes audiences deep into the Uru-Eu-Wau-Wau community and provides unprecedented access to the farmers and settlers illegally burning and clearing the protected Indigenous land. Partially shot by the Uru-Eu-Wau-Wau people, THE TERRITORY relies on vérité footage captured over three years as the community risks their lives to set up their own news media team in the hopes of exposing the truth. Director Alex Pritz joins us for a informative conversation on the importance that he placed an even-handed approach to conveying the disparate strands of a complex story whose outcome will have a profound impact on the indigenous Uru-Eu-Wau-Wau people, the region surrounding the Amazon rainforest and planet Earth."]

Thor: Love and Thunder (Australia/USA: Taika Waititi, 2022: 119 mins)

Tommy Guns  (Portugal/France/Angola: Carlos Conceição, 2022: 120 mins)

Borden, Carol. "Tommy Guns / Nação Valente (Portugal, 2023)." Monstrous Industry (April 25, 2023)

Tori and Lokita (Belgium/France: Luc Dardenne and Jean-Pierre Dardenne, 2022: 88 mins)

Craze, Joshua. "After Solidarity." New Left Review (May 18, 2023) ["Tori et Lokita (2022), the latest film by Jean-Pierre and Luc Dardenne, opens with a shot that has become a signal part of their visual repertoire: a face in the centre of the screen, crumbling under the voice of an unseen speaker. We see Lokita as she is interrogated by an immigration officer. At first, she seems impassive, but eventually she hesitates, and then breaks down in tears, unable to answer the officer’s questions. We witness the consequences of power, inscribed on a face."]

The Unknown Country (USA: Morissa Maltz, 2022: 85 mins)

Vengeance (USA: B.J. Novak, 2022: 108 mins)

Eggert, Brian. "Vengeance." Deep Focus Review (July 24, 2022) ["In B.J. Novak’s directorial debut, Vengeance, he plays a shallow writer who turns the death of a former hookup into podcast fodder. A critique of the exploitative opportunism of podcast culture, and by extension, an exploration of why people create, and further, how American culture consumes and processes various forms of media, Novak has a lot on his mind with this film. It’s also a murder mystery, a debunking of regional stereotypes, a takedown of how facts have been replaced with collective belief, and a discourse about America’s increasing division on political lines. Add to this a fish-out-of-water comic bent since Novak’s snobbish character travels from New York to Texas, and while there, exposes that he knows less than he thinks he does. Best known from The Office, on which he also wrote and directed episodes, Novak’s first feature shows promise. And while his ambitious sociopolitical assessment outweighs his script’s broad treatment of his characters and plot, the deceptively titled film offers a few choice speeches and tender moments for the curious viewer."]

Watcher (USA: Chloe Okuno, 2022: 91 mins)

White Noise (USA: Noah Baumbach, 2022: 136 mins)

Robson, Leo. "Other People's Standards." New Left Review (Januaey 20, 2023)

The Woman King (USA/South Africa/Ireland: Gina Prince-Bythewood, 2022: 135 mins)

Pointer, Nandi. "The Woman King: a disruptive, unruly site of countervisuality." Jump Cut #62 (Winter 2023/2024) ["This paper examines how and to what ends The Woman King challenges Hollywood’s longstanding patterns of representing Black people, particularly Black women. Through visual and textual analysis of the film itself as well as reference to media coverage and interviews with filmmakers and cast, I argue that The Woman King is a disruptive yet unruly site of countervisuality. Although these two words are often used interchangeably, I use the terms disruptive and unruly in distinct ways in my analysis: disruptive, causing a radical change to the normative paradigm of filmmaking and visual representation, yet unruly, not amenable to discipline or control, in that this film was received very differently by Black and white audiences. Following Mirzoeff (2011), I define countervisuality as asserting the right to look in a way that seeks to challenge what Fanon (1961) referred to as the “aesthetic of respect for the status quo” (p. 3-4). The Woman King disrupts the status quo, marking a forward decolonial orientation, thus representing a site of disidentification in Hollywood, as Muñoz (1999) theorized."]

X (USA: Ti West, 2022: 106 mins)

Koski, Genevieve, et al. "Tex-Mess, Pt. 1 — The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (1974)." The Next Picture Show (March 29, 2022) ["Ti West’s new horror film X is very openly inspired by THE TEXAS CHAINSAW MASSACRE, carrying through the spirit of Tobe Hooper’s 1974 shocker more capably than most of the subsequent films in what would become a nine-film franchise (in particular this year’s dreadful remake). Before getting into how it does that next week, this week we’re revisiting Hooper’s film with the help of film critic and series expert Katie Rife, to consider what made this film hit the way it did at the time, why it so often gets lumped in with the slasher genre it preceded, and whether it's a film that gets more brutal — or, perhaps, more comforting — with time."]

---. "Tex-Mess, Pt. 2 — X (2022)." The Next Picture Show (April 5, 2022) ["Ti West’s new X is very much inspired by Tobe Hooper’s 1974 shocker THE TEXAS CHAINSAW MASSACRE (and to an extent, Hooper’s lesser-known EATEN ALIVE), following another bunch of ill-fated van passengers, this one a group filming a low-budget porno, who wind up on the wrong side of the owners of a remote Texas farmhouse. The film’s late-’70s setting invites all sorts of analysis and interpretation about sex, death, and their intersection with cultural and religious conservatism at the dawn of the 1980s, which we dig into, once again with the help of film writer and horror aficionado Katie Rife, before turning our focus to some of the specific echoes between X and TEXAS CHAINSAW MASSACRE."]

You Won't Be Alone (Australia/UK/Serbia: Goran Stolevski, 2022: 109 mins)

Jones, Matthew. "You Won’t Be Alone (2022), A New Perspective On Witch Lore." Philosophy in Film (August 9, 2022) ["Witches make for great villains in horror films. From a creepy ballet instructor to a shadowy hermitess in the woods, there is no shortage of scary sorceresses and baby-snatchers on the silver screen. In Goran Stolevski’s debut feature film, You Won’t Be Alone (2022), the witches lean more toward the latter (baby-snatchers) than the former, as the film is grounded in witchcraft mythology. Stolevski does  a brilliant job mixing Eastern European lore surrounding witches with themes of identity, solitude, gender, and fate."]


The Adults (USA: Dusting Guy Defa, 2023: 91 mins)

Muredda, Angelo. "The Adults (Dustin Guy Defa, US)." Cinema Scope #95 (June 2023)

Wagner, Brigitta. "A Different Kind of Love Story: An Interview with Dustin Guy Defa." Senses of Cinema #105 (May 2023)

Afire (Germany: Christian Petzold, 2023: 102 mins)

Hughes, Darren. "Sentimental Education: Christian Petzold on Afire." Cinema Scope #94 (March 2023)

All of Us Strangers (UK/USA: Andrew Haigh, 2023: 105 mins)

Hudson, David. "Andrew Haigh’s All of Us Strangers." Current (October 2, 2023) 

American Fiction (USA: Cord Jefferson, 2023: 117 mins)

Jefferson, Cord. "Cord Jefferson on the Art of Adapting a Novel For the Screen." On the Media (February 23, 2024) ["This week, writer and director Cord Jefferson won a BAFTA for American Fiction, his screenplay adaptation of Percival Everett’s novel, Erasure. It features Jeffrey Wright, along with a bevy of other stars, and has collected five Oscar nominations. Jefferson is no stranger to adaptations, having written for series like Station Eleven, based on a novel, and the Emmy-award winning show Watchmen, originally a graphic comic. But he started his career in journalism. This week, Jefferson tells Brooke what led him to Hollywood, about his film's critique of his industry, and the process of adapting a novel for the screen."]

The Beast (France/Canada: Bertrand Bonello, 2023: 146 mins)

Anderson, Melissa. "The Beast." 4 Columns (April 5, 2024)

The Boy and the Heron (Japan: Hayao Miyazaki, 2023: 124 mins)

Hudson, David. "Hayao Miyazaki's The Boy and the Heron." Current (September 13, 2023)

Civil War (USA/UK: Alex Garland, 2024: 109 mins)

Blake, Nathan and Mark Olsen. "America at War, Now in Theaters." Today, Explained (April 12, 2024) ["The new movie Civil War delivers a sensational story about political polarization spilling into mass violence. If that seems reckless, it’s what apocalyptic films have done forever. The LA Times’s Mark Olsen and Northeastern University’s Nathan Blake explain."]

Do Not Expect Too Much From the End of the World (Romania/Luxembourg/France: Radu Jude, 2023: 163 mins)

Hudson, David. "Radu Jude Wows Locarno." Current (August 8, 2023)

Earth Mama (UK/USA: Savanah Leaf, 2023: 100 mins)

Cianfrance, Derek. "Decisive Moments: Earth Mama Director Savanah Leaf." Filmmaker (June 27, 2023)

Eureka (Argentina/France/Portugal: Lisandro Alonso, 2023: 146 mins)

Goi, Leonardo. "Cannes Dispatch: The Obscenity of Evil."  Notebook (May 23, 2023)

Rizov, Vadim. "Cannes 2023: Lisandro Alonso on Eureka." Filmmaker (May 24, 2023)

Green Border (Poland: Agnieszka Holland, 2023: 152 mins)

Hudson, David. "Agnieszka Holland's Green Border." Current (September 26, 2023) ["Agnieszka Holland’s Green Border, which screens next week at the New York Film Festival, just scored the best weekend at the domestic box office of any Polish film this year. That would be a remarkable feat for any two-and-a-half-hour, black-and-white movie with a multistrand narrative, but it’s all the more astonishing considering that, as Melanie Goodfellow reports for Deadline, Poland’s “ruling right-wing, anti-immigrant coalition government, led by the Law and Justice (PiS) party” staged “an online hate campaign against Holland and also encouraged physical protests outside cinemas showing the film by neofascists groups.”]

Guardians of the Galaxy 3 (USA/New Zealand/France: James Gunn, 2023: 150 mins)

McReynolds, Leigha. "Eugenics and the Human/Animal Divide in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3." Tor (September 19, 2023) ["American culture is shaped by eugenic systems of measuring people and assessing their relative value. Prominent examples include the quantification and testing of intelligence through the intelligence quotient (IQ); use of the body mass index (BMI) to assess the health of individuals; and the SAT. From the vantage point of 2023, all of these have been rightfully criticized and are in the process of losing some of their power, but they are still widespread ways of judging individuals’ worth in comparison to others. Even things that we can generally agree are of huge value can be rooted in eugenics—the history of modern contraception has been intertwined with eugenic goals and legacies. In addition to the “old eugenics” policies like sterilization, the development of genetic technology is shadowed by “new eugenics”: the desire to “improve” individuals through genetic and reproductive technology. While this includes beneficial interventions, like eliminating diseases, including sickle cell anemia, it includes more controversial possibilities, like eliminating deafness, which would also destroy a culture. While most of us agree that people should have access to IVF to address infertility and genetic diseases, there’s convincing evidence that widespread IVF usage would lead to a disproportionate number of male offspring. As genetic technology is currently developing at an astonishing rate, the potential harm of new eugenic practices is significant and under-appreciated. If we cannot label eugenics for what it is, if we don’t know its history, if we let such actions fall under the category of “nature” or “evolution” or “progress” then we are complicit. If we decide to let parents choose their children’s genetic traits—a possibility imagined to its fullest extent in the 1997 movie Gattaca —then we need to be willing to admit that there are traits that we are not choosing, and that our choices are products of cultural context and are often grounded in bias."]

Infinity Pool (Canada/Croatia/Hungary: Brandon Croneberg, 2023: 117 mins)

Booker, M. Keith.  "I Think I’m a Clone Now: The (New) Weirdness of Brandon Cronenberg’s Infinity Pool." Comments on Culture (2023) ["All three of Brandon Cronenberg’s films to date have combined elements of science fiction and body horror and have thus naturally drawn comparisons with the work of his illustrious father, David Cronenberg, one of the great masters of body horror with science fictional elements. Infinity Pool (2023), however, is a step forward in complexity and sophistication for the films of the younger Cronenberg—and in ways that place it within the generic context of the New Weird, rather than conventional science fiction and body horror. The filmengages in dialogues with a wide variety of cinematic predecessors, offering readers a variety of contexts within which to interpret the film, yet ultimately superseding all of those interpretations in interesting ways. Indeed, much of what makes Infinity Pool such an interesting film has to do with its subversive dialogues with a number of different traditions in horror film, often with reference to science fiction as well. It features modern Western characters who travel to a remote, seemingly backward setting and encounter dangers that evoke the traditions of both folk horror and dystopian fiction. Yet the central conceit of Infinity Pool places it in dialogue with the tradition of uncanny Doppelgänger horror, as well as science fiction cloning narratives, though the dynamic way this film combines science fiction and horror might actually place it more in the realm of the weird, or the “abcanny,” as defined by New Weird maven China Miéville. Ultimately, the film’s most powerful message seems to involve a critique of the ruthless behavior of its privileged, wealthy characters, which places the film in dialogue with a number of such critiques in both horror and science fiction film. This film, though, is particularly aware that its vision of wealth and privilege is set within the globalized world of neoliberal capitalism. By dialectically rejecting the binary premises of the various genres in which it seems on the verge of participating, the film suggests that these premises derive from a kind of thinking that no longer applies in the global world system of late neoliberal capitalism. In addition, this dismantling of binary oppositions collapses a fundamental basis of Western logic, again pointing to the New Weird, with its alternative logic, as the most useful generic characterization of this film."]

The Killer (USA: David Fincher, 2023: 118 mins)

La Chimera (Italy/France/Switzerland: Alice Rohrwacher, 2023: 133 mins)

Hudson, David. "Alice Rohrwacher's La Chimera." Current (October 12, 2023)

Late Night with the Devil (Australia: Cameron Cairnes and Colin Cairnes, 2023: 93 mins)

Laycock, Joseph. "Late Night With the Devil Reflects The Role of Talk Shows in Sensationalizing the Satanic Panic of the 1980s." Religion Dispatches (March 26, 2024) ["Despite its supernatural premise, Late Night with the Devil is a work of realism. Most of the characters and events in the film are references to actual figures from 1970s occulture. It also reflects on the way that talk shows became a vector through which rumors of Satanic cults spread, fueling the Satanic Panic of the 1980s. As described in my book The Exorcist Effect, filming a live exorcism was a goal of network news media for two decades."]

La Chimera (Italy/France/Switzerland: Alice Rohrwacher, 2023: 133 mins)

The Film Stage (April 4, 2024)

Maestro (USA: Bradley Cooper, 2023: 129 mins)

Hudson, David. "Bradley Cooper's Maestro." Current (September 19, 2023)

May December (USA: Todd Haynes, 2023: 113 mins)

Burch, Samy, et al. "May December." Film at Lincoln Center #480 (September 30, 2023) ["From the sensational premise born from first-time screenwriter Samy Burch’s brilliant script, director Todd Haynes (Safe, Carol) has constructed an American tale of astonishing richness and depth, which touches the pressure and pleasure points of a culture obsessed equally with celebrity and trauma. Boasting a trio of bravura, mercurial performances by Julianne Moore, Natalie Portman, and Charles Melton, May December is a film about human exploitation, the elusive nature of performance, and the slipperiness of truth that confirms Todd Haynes’s status as one of our consummate movie artists. ... Listen to the press conference featuring Haynes, Burch, and producers Christine Vachon, Pamela Koffler, Jessica Elbaum, and Sophie Mas as they discuss May December."]

Hudson, David. "May December Will Open NYFF 2023." Current (July 12, 2023)

My Animal (Canada: Jacqueline Castel, 2023: 99 mins)

Castel, Jacqueline. "My Animal." Screen Slate #33 (September 5, 2023) ["Filmmaker Jacqueline Castel joins us to talk about her feature debut My Animal, which unites Amandla Stenberg and Bobbi Salvör Menuez in a haunting, queer werewolf story set in a small town in Northern Ontario. A veteran music video director best known for her many collaborations with Sacred Bones artists like Zola Jesus and Pharmakon along with musician-directors such as Jim Jarmusch and John Carpenter, Castel speaks about the elements that aligned to make her first film possible. We get into casting, linking up with screenwriter Jae Matthews of Boy Harsher, scouting the perfect eerie town, shooting the breathtaking moon photography, and the unexpected fitness documentary that influenced the film."]

Perfect Days (Japan/Germany: Wim Wenders, 2023: 124 mins)

Wenders, Wim. "Perfect Days: — Wim Wenders cures his post-pandemic blues." MUBI Podcast (April 11, 2024) ["Legendary filmmaker Wim Wenders returns to the show to tell host Rico Gagliano about his Cannes-winning, Oscar-nominated PERFECT DAYS—the story of a Tokyo toilet cleaner who finds joy in routine. They also get into a few of Wenders’s favorite things: Japan, travel, Nina Simone, and having time on his hands."]

Priscilla (USA: Sofia Coppola, 2023: 110 mins)

Hudson, David. "Sofia Coppola's Priscilla." Current (October 5, 2023)

Rye Lane (UK: Raine Allan-Miller, 2023: 82 mins)

The Sweet East (USA: Sean Price Williams, 2023: 104 mins)

Goi, Leonardo. "Cannes Dispatch: The Obscenity of Evil."  Notebook (May 23, 2023)

The Taste of Things (France/Belgium: Tran Anh Hung, 2023: 135 mins)


Civil War (USA/UK: Alex Garland, 2024: 109 mins)

Furiosa: A Mad Max Saga (Australia/USA: George Miller, 2024: 149 mins)

Hudson, David. "Furiosa: A Mad Max Saga." Current (May 16, 2024)

Megalopolis (USA: Francis Ford Coppola, 2024: 138 mins)

Hudson, David. "Francis Ford Coppola's Megalopolis." Current (May 20, 2024)

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