Film reviews and more

Criterion Review: 12 Angry Men

★★★★★ In the 60 years since its release, Sidney Lumet’s masterpiece has lost none of its impact. In this age of unreason, 12 Angry Men remains sorely and urgently contemporary. Filmed originally as a TV movie, […]

Film Review: Miss Sloane

★★★★☆ There’s little doubt that the success of John Madden’s latest film, Miss Sloane, lays in the blisteringly chilly performance from Jessica Chastain as a Washington lobbyist who plays the political system like chess, happy to […]

Film Review: The Levelling

★★★★☆ Like a fox’s call, discerning whether a human cry is in pain, exultation or fear is not always immediately evident. It is a haunting blend of such noises that first meets our ears in the […]

Film Review: The Last Face

★★☆☆☆ “Why do they always have to be entertained before they listen?” asks Javier Bardem’s Dr. Miguel at the opening of Sean Penn’s The Last Face. This pointed dig at the indifference of audiences is doubly mendacious […]

Film Review: Frantz

★★☆☆☆ Prolific French director François Ozon returns to UK cinemas this week with Frantz, a slick inter-war melodrama that promises more than it ultimately delivers. Paula Beer plays Anna, a young Fräulein grieving for her fiancé […]

Film Review: Alien: Covenant

★★★★☆ Hide. Pray. Run. The ad campaign for Alien: Covenant enforced the strict message that it’s much closer in spirit and tone to Ridley Scott’s Alien. It pretty much screamed to you: “Forget Prometheus!” The 2012 […]

IndieLisboa 2017: Ordinary People

★★★☆☆ Homeless people go unseen everyday, with passersby ignoring their existence, and in turn, the harsh realities of social exclusion. In the Philippine capital of Manila, urban poverty is rising almost as rapidly as the luxury […]

Film Review: El Mar La Mar

★★★★☆ There are many reasons people mocked Donald Trump’s plan to build a wall across the American, Mexican border. One of them is the Sonoran desert. An arid borderland, where traditional rules of society are suspended, […]

IndieLisboa 2017: Arábia

★★★★☆ Screening at this year’s IndieLisboa, Affonso Uchoa and João Dumans’ Arábia is a beautifully observed and intensely lyrical road movie about how difficult it is to just get by in Brazilian society. The film opens […]

Film Review: Mindhorn

★★★★☆ Mindhorn is the brainchild of Julian Barratt and Simon Farnaby, both of whom are well known for their roles in The Mighty Boosh. Together with theatre director Sean Foley, they’ve crafted a hysterical farce that […]

Film Review: Harmonium

★★★★☆ Echoes of The Gift haunt Japanese director Kôji Fukada’s latest feature Harmonium. Ken’ichi Negishi’s long, static shots have more in common with Scandi noir than feel-good melodrama, cluing us into the tragedy that will befall […]

Criterion Review: Tampopo

★★★★☆ From the prison-set cookery lesson in Goodfellas to the black cannibalistic comedy of Delicatessen and the gluttony of the gargantuan diner in The Meaning of Life, the theme of food is a rich and well-ploughed […]