Review: ‘A War’ explores war’s quiet, forgotten horrors

Review: ‘A War’ explores war’s quiet, forgotten horrors

More than 14 years later and the war in Afghanistan is still going on. President Obama declared the end of U.S. military combat operations in Afghanistan in December of 2014, but 9,800 American troops and 3,200 NATO troops remain there to prop up the ineffectual Afghan Army as the longest war in U.S. history unofficially […]

Shorts at #Locarno67: meditation vs testing the audience’s patience

Shorts at #Locarno67: meditation vs testing the audience’s patience

A guest blog from Mico Tatalovic When the representative of Single Stream, one of the shorts screened here, said ‘hope you enjoy our trashy movie’ I didn’t actually expect it to be about trash. Nor would I have guessed that 23 minutes, without dialogue, of shots of the inside of a recycling plant could be […]

‘The Fool’: A modern propaganda film

‘The Fool’: A modern propaganda film

Dima Nitikin is an honest plumber who lives with his wife and son in his parents’ apartment. Studying architecture in his spare time, he’s what you might call ambitious, but not by his mother’s standards. She berates him and his father for refusing to play the system: when all of the neighbours are stealing to […]

Fidelio, l’odyssée d’Alice: At sea in search of love

Fidelio, l’odyssée d’Alice: At sea in search of love

  A mechanic in the French navy, Alice (Ariane Labed) spends much of her life on board cargo ships. Her new boyfriend Félix, a Norwegian graphic novelist, waits patiently for her at home. She is called to serve on the Fidelio to replace a man who has died on board. Having taken over the dead […]

Shorts at Locarno 2014: Highlights from young talent

Shorts at Locarno 2014: Highlights from young talent

 A guest post from Mico Tatalovic, in Locarno, Switzerland. Strolling through the narrow streets of Locarno, a picturesque lake-side town surrounded by the Alps, on the way to screenings, one feels the buzz and quaintness that come with the festival’s prestige and location – but, perhaps unexpectedly, one also gets a lot of negative vibe […]

Silence tells the story in “Ida”

Silence tells the story in “Ida”

The alarming precision of nuns singing chromatically descending chants. The hollow, circular depression of earth on the grounds of the convent where a life-size statue of Jesus stands, and where Ida paces restlessly. The hermetic insularity of these images and sounds are what give “Ida” its incisive narrative force. Despite its circular and deceptively simple […]

Drinking Buddies (2013)

Drinking Buddies (2013)

With no end in sight to the glut of autobots and decepticons, board game adaptations and bloated Marvel costume parties passed off as narrative storytelling, Tinseltown could use a little more mumble in its movies.

Les Invisibles: Speaking up, stepping out

Les Invisibles: Speaking up, stepping out

Les Invisibles does more than you’d expect of a documentary about elderly gay and lesbian people. I went into this film anticipating a series of interesting stories about individual lives, but this is a film that offers far more. Sébastien Lifshitz has imposed a true director’s conception of mood and theme to this film, which […]

Before Midnight: Unevenly Matched

Before Midnight: Unevenly Matched

Before Midnight offers a long-awaited update on the lives of Céline and Jesse, the couple who met on a train to Vienna in the 90s, then came together again in Paris the 2000s after Jesse wrote a book about their brief encounter. The second film, Before Sunset, ended ambiguously, with the possibility that Jesse might […]

Black Rock (2013)

Black Rock (2013)

Mark Duplass and Katie Aselton surprised me with “Black Rock,” a lean, formidable thriller about survival and friendship. A husband and wife team, Mr. Duplass wrote the screenplay and Ms. Asleton directed. Mark Duplass is known as the star of goofy but earnest films such as “Safety Not Guaranteed” and “Humpday.” He also shared writing, […]

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