Film reviews and more

Day: 3 September 2015

Film Review: ‘The Second Mother’

★★★★☆ Anna Muylaert’s heartwarming The Second Mother (2015) stars Regina Casé as Val, a live-in housekeeper for a wealthy family in São Paulo, has helped bring up their 17-year-old son Fabinho (Michel Joelsas). She loves him as her […]

Film Review: ‘Ricki and the Flash’

★★★☆☆ What does a Jonathan Demme film look like? From features to docs to television, he has an old studio player’s utilitarian work ethic; restless and unfussy. Aside from the musical fixation, there’s little in the […]

Film Review: ‘Miss Julie’

★★☆☆☆ All the pieces seemed to be in place for Liv Ullmann’s take on Miss Julie (2014), Swedish playwright August Strindberg’s examination of class and sexual politics set in the waning years of the 19th century. A […]

Film Review: ‘Dope’

★★★☆☆ Produced by Forest Whitaker, this teenage coming-of-age caper set in Inglewood, California involves the usual hood narrative trifecta of drugs, gangs, and crime while attempting to offer a playful alternative to black cultural stereotypes. Fantastical, […]

Film Review: ‘Closed Curtain’

★★★★★ Closed Curtain (2013), Jafar Panahi’s symbolically charged follow-up to his critically acclaimed This Is Not a Film (2012), is about state repression, censorship, depression and the intersection between art and reality. Echoes of the former […]

Film Review: ‘Cartel Land’

★★★★☆ Perhaps this year’s most important documentary, Cartel Land (2015) offers a too-close-for-comfort, ground-level look at vigilante groups who attempt to thwart murderous Mexican drug cartels on both sides of the US-Mexican border. Equally chilling and […]

Film Review: ‘Buttercup Bill’

★★★☆☆ “Like a murderer jumping outta nowhere in an alley, love has jumped in front of us, like a lightning strike.” This may seem a bizarre way to describe a relationship but in fact it perfectly […]

Film Review: ‘Aaaaaaaah!’

★★★★☆ Steve Oram’s directorial debut Aaaaaaaah! (2015) comes on like a collaboration between Dogme ’95 and Chris Morris. It’s hard to think of another film closely like it in British cinema. It really is that out-there […]