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NYFF Review: Portrait of a Lady on Fire

Midway through Céline Sciamma’s masterful Portrait of a Lady on Fire, we get the film’s thematic archstone. So much of this painterly, poetic queer romance is about looking at someone we desire and the feeling of being se...

 
 
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Review: The Fall of the American Empire

Every now and then I’ll see a movie that I don’t particularly like but I find thought provoking. Every now and then I’ll see a movie I find thought provoking not because of the depth of its ideas but because of the ideas i...

 
 
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A first-timer's guide to Agnes Varda: Faces Places

French cinema is an area of filmmaking I’m really enthused by, and since learning about it as a student, the sheer novelty of the New Wave has always remained an area of fascination. Like many before me, I have a lot of respect fo...

 
 
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Tribeca Review: Slut in a Good Way

I'm not usually one for movies about teenagers going through the perils of teenage life. I lived through it, it sucked, and why on Earth would I want to relive those memories again? Being a teenager sucked, but filmmakers love to make movie...

 
 
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Review: Ravenous

Hoo boy was I hoping for something better out of this. I'll start by saying it has some gorgeous shots throughout, and the performances are largely ok. They don't make up for the general dragginess the movie has, nor it's lack believable ch...

 
 
Review: Rock'n Roll photo

Tribeca Capsule Review: Rock'n Roll

I feel like I might have appreciated Rock'n Roll more if I was familiar with French pop culture and the country's film industry. Writer, director, and star Guillaume Canet packs his comedy with real-life French celebrities playing surreal c...

 
 
Review: Raw photo

Review: Raw

While playing at film festivals last year, the hype over Raw was insane. Writer/director Julia Ducournau's coming-of-age horror/cannibal drama purportedly caused audience members to faint, to vomit, to leave screenings in distress. These ar...

 
 
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Review: My Life as a Zucchini

There's this pervasive idea that children are resilient, that they're able to cope well even in dire circumstances. In stories about forlorn kids, a combination of optimistic pluck and boundless imagination helps them through their troubled...

 
 
Review: Evolution photo

Review: Evolution

There's so much going for Lucile Hadzihalilovic's Evolution, a film expertly lensed from the deliberate first shot: looking up to the sky from underwater. From beneath, the ripples and waves on the ocean surface produce undulating shadows, ...

 
 
Review: Elle photo

Review: Elle

Elle has been billed as a rape-comedy, but that's a misnomer. It's a comedy in the classical sense given the events of the story, but it's not necessarily funny (there are funny scenes, though). And yes, it's about rape. Elle has been laude...

 
 
 
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Review: April and the Extraordinary World

Animated films are the best, aren't they? They give more life to their worlds than most live-action films do with their mixed use of CGI and human actors. Even as technology advances to the point where CG characters will be flawless and sea...

 
 
Review: Microbe & Gasolin photo

NYFF Review: Microbe & Gasoline

When Michel Gondry writes his own films, I've noticed that his protagonists have a tendency to act like quirky, whimsical teenagers. The misfit oddballs of The Science of Sleep and Be Kind Rewind probably found a Zoltar machine, made a wish...

 
 
 
 
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Review: Two Days, One Night

Sometimes you watch a movie and you immediately know how you're going to feel about it. There's something about the atmosphere that it creates that just strikes you. You know exactly what the film is trying to do, and you know how you'll re...

 
 
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Flix for Short: Space Cat Hob

In Space Cat Hob, we meet Hob, an anthropomorphic cat with a fancy space suit who has crash landed on a dangerous planet. Despite just wanting to do the right thing, Hob finds himself in trouble after trouble as he navigates his way throug...

 
 
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Trailer for Xavier Dolan's Mommy teases sweeping family drama

Director Xavier Dolan's film Mommy examines the tumultuous lives of a mother and son as they go through the challenge of growing up. Unable to do everything alone, the sassy widowed mother finds balance when their neighbor offers to help h...

 
 
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Trailer for Whiplash starring Miles Teller and J.K. Simmons

Whoa, why hasn't anyone told me about Whiplash? Starring J.K. Simmons and Miles Teller, as a jazz student and incredibly harsh teacher, Whiplash looks like it's going to be one of my favorites this year if the rest of it is as good as the ...

 
 
 
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After the Credits: Not caring about unlikable characters

Last week, I saw a movie I didn't like very much, but I found the fact that I didn't like it interesting. I got about halfway through writing the review when I realized that I would rather talk about it than write. Hence this week's editio...

 
 
What's in a Name? Review photo

Review: What's in a Name?

It's a stereotype that the French are more cultured than Americans, but obviously that's a hard claim to either prove or disprove. There are any number of examples that could be used to show it either way, but here's evidence that, as far a...

 
 
Blue Warmest Color Review photo

Review: Blue Is the Warmest Color

There are many examples of desire in Blue Is the Warmest Color that are nuanced and downright erotic. These moments are communicated in coy shifts in facial expression, through the brinkmanship of flirtation, the intimate risks of proximity...

 
 
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A clip from Romain Gavras's Our Day Will Come

Our Day Will Come (Notre jour viendra) is the debut feature film of Romain Gavras, best known as the music video director behind "No Church in the Wild" by Kanye West and Jay-Z and "Born Free" by M.I.A. Released in France in 2010, the film...

 
 
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NYFF Review: The Missing Picture

At last year's New York Asian Film Festival I saw a documentary called Golden Slumbers, which focused on the lost cinema of Cambodia. The Khmer Rouge had destroyed cinema houses and film negatives throughout the country, wiping out an entir...

 
 
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Trailer for Blue is the Warmest Color is quiet and lovely

Blue is the Warmest Color is a French romantic drama directed by Abdellatif Kechiche, and it's been making quite an impression on the indie and film festival crowds. The film follows a young girl named Adele, played by Adèle Exarcho...

 
 
 
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Trailer: The Young and Prodigious Spivet

Here is the trailer for The Young and Prodigious Spivet, the latest from Amelie and City of Lost Children director Jean-Pierre Jeunet. The film is an adaptation of the book The Selected Works of T. S. Spivet by Reif Larsen, and stars Helen...

 
 
Something in Air Review photo

Review: Something in the Air

Confession time: the only Olivier Assayas movie I'd seen prior to Something in the Air was Irma Vep starring Maggie Cheung, which I really enjoyed. Summer Hours, Clean, and Carlos have been on my to-see list for a while, and I hope to get t...

 
 
In the House Review photo

Review: In the House

There's a great short story in Richard Yates's Eleven Kinds of Loneliness called "Builders." In it, one of the characters naively but sincerely thinks of writing in terms of building houses, and the windows are places where light can shine ...

 
 
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Tribeca Review: Mobius

There's a moment in Möbius where I expected a turn toward high-stakes adventure and evasion. As in any story of spies and espionage, this is where a fine plan goes horribly, uncontrollably wrong. People who shouldn't get involved get i...

 
 
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First images from Jean-Pierre Jeunet's Prodigious Spivet

I really loved Jean-Pierre Jeunet's and Marc Caro's films in high school and college, wearing down my VHS copies of Delicatessen and The City of Lost Children, and watching Amelie pretty regularly on fancy, new-fangled DVD. I still hope for...

 
 
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Trailer: Before Midnight

The third installment in Richard Linklater's series of movies -- which include indie darlings Before Sunrise and Before Sunset -- Before Midnight finds characters Celine and Jesse (played by Julie Deply and Ethan Hawke) in their early 40s ...

 
 
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Trailer: Something in the Air

Something in the Air is the newest tale from director Olivier Assayas. Assayas is well-known for his 2010 TV mini-series Carlos, which told the tale of revolutionary/terrorist Ilich Ramírez Sánchez, also known as Carlos the J...

 
 
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Trailer: Mood Indigo

Mood Indigo (titled L'Écume des Jours or "Froth on the Daydream" in French) is director Michel Gondry's newest dealings with love and loss. With such previous heavy-hitters as Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind and The Science of...

 
 
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RFC Review: The Suicide Shop

[Over the next few days we'll be looking at some of the films from Rendez Vous with French Cinema 2013, an annual showcase of contemporary and classic French films running from February 28th to March 10th. The screenings will take place at ...

 
 
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Trailer: Mood Indigo

Mood Indigo is Michel Gondry's return to the surreal and mysterious much like Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind. It's world is one where you can ride around in a cloud, fall in love with a woman who inhales a lily into her lung, a...

 
 
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New concept art from Sylvain Chomet's 'Swing Popa Swing'

The French animation director Sylvain Chomet’s next film will most likely be Swing Popa Swing. This new film is to follow the success of Chomet’s first feature-length film, The Triplets of Belleville, where it will follow the th...

 
 
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Trailer: The Gang of the Jotas

Artist Marjane Satrapi has two excellent films under her belt: Persepolis and Chicken with Plums, both of which were co-directed with Vincent Paronnaud. With The Gang of Jotas (La Bande de Jotas), Satrapi's flying solo as a writer and...

 
 
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New international (French) Les Misérables poster

Now that we're well on our way out of November, we enter into the legitimate beginnings of the Holiday season; that is to say, that time of year that some people love while others despise it wholeheartedly. What can we do to bring peace to ...

 
 




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Reviews   filter by...

Zombieland: Double Tap"New zombies, same jokes"

 

Carmen Sandiego (Season Two)"Sins of the father"

 

Maleficent: Mistress of Evil"EEEEEEEEVIIIIIIIIIIIIL"

 

Trick"Give me something good to stab (and stab and stab)"

 

Metallica: S&M²"Fight Fire With Fire"

 

LFF Harriet"Be free or die"

 

Gemini Man"Does whatever a gemini can"

 

LFF The Aeronauts"Reach for the sky"

 

NYFF Saturday Fiction"Life during wartime"

 

The Addams Family"Just be yourself (but not too much!)"

 

Parasite"Class mobility is a lie"

 

Lucky Day"Luck's run out"

 

LFF Knives Out"Whodounut"

 

LFF Bad Education"Ain't misbehavin"

 

NYFF The Whistlers"Whistling away the jail days"

 

LFF Marriage Story"Romcom in reverse"

 

LFF The Report"Democracy under scrutiny"

 

Preacher (Season 4)"The Messiah will dance!"

 

LFF The King"High drama"

 

LFF Jojo Rabbit"Ja Hitler!"

 

LFF Hope Gap"Deficient"

 

LFF Lucky Grandma"You'll never look at your grandma in the same way again"

 
 
 
 
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