CineVue

Film reviews and more

Month: July 2015

#Reviews

Film Review: ‘Man with a Movie Camera’

★★★★☆ Dziga Vertov’s Man with a Movie Camera (1929) still shines, even as an octogenarian. The film remains a testaments to the early days of filmmaking and the commitment to innovation and exploitation of the then-new medium. It has now also transformed itself into something of a time capsule, literally making itself into […]

#John Bleasdale #Reviews

Film Review: ‘Beyond the Reach’

★★☆☆☆ With a homicidal big game hunter as its chief antagonist, Jean-Baptiste Léonetti’s Beyond the Reach (2014) has a ripped from the headlines topicality, but unfortunately this plodding thriller consistently fails to engage. Michael Douglas plays John Madec, a high-flying finance mogul who likes to relax by taking trophies of wild, rare, if […]

#Reviews

DVD Review: ‘While We’re Young’

★★★☆☆ For his sixth feature as writer-director, Noah Baumbach continues a newly prolific streak with While We’re Young (2014), which furthers his approach to infusing his cinema with his own thoughts, feelings and verdicts on specific areas of contemporary culture. Where his previous film, the monochrome crowd-pleaser Frances Ha (2012), saw him breaking […]

#Ben Nicholson #Reviews

DVD Review: ‘War and Peace’

★★★★☆ Anand Patwardhan’s War and Peace was released in 2002, and its presentation of escalating nationalist posturing – aka the arms race between India and Pakistan – was incredibly apposite. Over a decade later, WMDs in Iraq may not be the hot-button topic they were back then, but the Bharatiya Janata Party has […]

#Reviews

DVD Review: ‘Suite Française’

★★★☆☆ Given that its source material is a beloved book with a potent history, the film adaptation of Suite Française (2014) is a sincere disappointment. Its a middling exercise in schmaltz, often overflowing with heavily wrought dialogue and oft-deployed melodramatic tactics. Despite two leads of notable standing, this is a misstep for all […]

#Lucy Popescu #Reviews

Blu-ray Review: ‘Listen Up Philip’

★★★☆☆ Alex Ross Perry’s Listen Up Philip (2014) follows a self-absorbed writer (Jason Schwartzman) who scuppers his fledgling career through sheer arrogance and misanthropy. It;s both an engaging and a frustrating watch. From the very first scene, Philip is being obnoxious to a former girlfriend who turns up late to their appointment. He […]

#Lucy Popescu #Reviews

DVD Review: ‘Clouds of Sils Maria’

★★★★☆ Youth, beauty and mortality are potent themes in Olivier Assayas’ latest feature Clouds of Sils Maria (2014), starring Juliette Binoche and Kristen Stewart. Binoche plays Maria Enders, a middle-aged actress who remains at the top of her game but is assailed by doubts about her career and which direction to take. The […]

#Reviews

DVD Review: ‘A Girl Walks Home Alone’

★★★★☆ It’s easy to mistake Ana Lily Armirpour’s A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night (2014) as purely a mash-up of spaghetti western, horror and neo-noir – until a sign appears in Farsi, accompanied by a pile of dead bodies inexplicably dumped in a nearby gulch. In this subversive Iranian vampire flick, the […]

#John Bleasdale #Reviews

Film Review: Ruth & Alex

★★☆☆☆ Morgan Freeman and Diane Keaton play Alex and Ruth Carver in Ruth & Alex (2014), a wistfully bland property-based dramedy that comes off as a cross between Location, Location, Location and On Golden Pond (1981). Alex is a struggling artist and Ruth is a retired teacher. Together they live in their Brooklyn […]

#Ben Nicholson #Reviews

Film Review: ‘Eden’

★★★☆☆ French filmmaker Mia Hansen-Løve isn’t exactly known for emotional subjectivity and visual bombast, so when a young raver tripping out in a field sees an animated bird swooping through the sky in her latest film, Eden (2014), it potentially marks something of a departure. Subsequently, things settle into a more familiar aesthetic […]

#Ben Nicholson #Reviews

Blu-ray Review: ‘Third Man’

★★★★★ No cinematic genre can capture the inky morality of pernicious scavengers feeding on the carcass of post-war Europe like film noir. And no other noir manages it with quite the pervasive world-weariness and melancholy of The Third Man (1949). Beautifully penned by Graham Greene for Carol Reed’s direction, it is one of cinema’s […]

#Reviews

DVD Review: ‘Mommy’

★★★★☆ The fifth feature from worryingly prolific mid-twenties Quebecoise filmmaker Xavier Dolan, Mommy (2014) sees him returning to the themes that have fuelled his impressive quartet of features thus far, only here they are so tightly woven together to form perhaps his most robust piece of work to date. The winner of a […]

#Lucy Popescu #Reviews

DVD Review: ‘The Face of an Angel’

★★★☆☆ Michael Winterbottom’s latest feature, The Face of an Angel (2014), explores the intersection of beauty, youth, sex and violent crime. Inspired by Amanda Knox’s alleged murder of British student Meredith Kercher in Italy, Winterbottom offers a perceptive, but at times plodding, take on the media’s sensationalised coverage of her trial. Thomas Lang […]

#Ben Nicholson #Reviews

DVD Review: ‘The Gunman’

★★☆☆☆ With The Gunman (2015), Sean Penn becomes the latest inductee into that club slowly being filled by older gentlemen with a particular set of skills. Pierre Morel was a key figure in the meteoric rise of the ‘geriaction’ genre with his explosive Taken (2008), not only launching Liam Neeson’s own brand of […]