Film reviews and more

Patrick Gamble

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Film Review: Cinema Paradiso

★★★★☆ A major contributor to the reverential narrative of wistful cinema, Giuseppe Tornatore’s magnum opus Cinema Paradiso is an elegant distillation of the form’s escapist qualities and the garland of an industry that understands global audiences’ enduring appetite for wild nostalgia. Returning to his lavish Rome apartment, revered film director Salvatore Di Vita […]

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Film Review: Infinite Football

★★★★☆ A Romanian pen pusher’s attempts to revolutionise the beautiful game goes far beyond inverting the pyramid in Corneliu Porumboiu’s hilarious Infinite Football, a semi-follow-up to The Second Game. The introduction of rules to the game of football gave it a shared language and helped turn it into a spectator sport – but […]

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Film Review: Ghost Town Anthology

★★★★☆ The reverberations of loss in a small town awaken the spirits of the recently deceased in Denis Côté’s chilling adaptation of Laurence Olivier’s Répertoire des villes disparues. Occupying a peculiar space between life and death, arthouse and genre, Ghost Town Anthology isn’t a horror story exactly, but a portrait of a place […]

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Interview: Brady Corbet, dir. Vox Lux

In 2015, Brady Corbet went from supporting roles in films like Catherine Hardwicke’s Thirteen, Michael Haneke’s Funny Games (US) and Lars von Trier’s Melancholia, to suddenly being lauded as one of the most exciting new directors working in American Cinema. Corbet’s debut The Childhood of a Leader, a historical coming-of-age drama about a […]

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Berlin 2019: So Long, My Son review

★★★★☆ Sixth generation director Wang Xiaoshuai returns to Berlin with a decade-spanning family drama set against some of the most turbulent events in recent Chinese history. At just over three-hours, So Long, My Son is an emotionally wrenching film that’s epic in scope but intimate in feeling. Depicting China’s difficult transition from state-controlled communism […]

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Berlin 2019: Bait review

★★★★☆ Bait joins a recent spate of British films that have abandoned the cities to depict a countryside in crisis. But, unlike social-realist dramas like The Levelling, Dark River and God’s Own Country, Mark Jenkin’s wonderfully weird debut subverts the kitchen sink template to create one of Berlin’s most original and satisfying films. […]

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Berlin 2019: The Plagiarists review

★★★★☆ A pair of self-absorbed millennials are forced to confront the lack of originality behind their ideas in Peter Parlow’s The Plagiarists, a dramatic comedy that asks the questions; who has the “right” to access culture and who possesses the authority to speak on its behalf? The film opens with an argument between […]

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Berlin 2019: Earth review

★★★★☆ Highlighting the significant impact of mining and large-scale construction on the planet’s ecosystem, the latest film from documentarian Nikolaus Geyrhalter Earth is a powerful example of politically charged landscape filmmaking. A brief introduction underlines the extent to which mankind is now the most destructive force on the planet. Every year, 60 million […]

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Berlin 2019: Öndög review

★★★★☆ A beguiling drama laced with dry humour and lashings of spiritualism, Wang Quan’an’s Competition entry Öndög possesses a mysterious grandeur that should ensure it doesn’t leave the Berlinale empty-handed. Concerned with the mysteries surrounding life and death, Öndög opens with the discovery of a dead body and ends in coitus, with what […]

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Berlin 2019: Monsters review

★★★☆☆ Following in the footsteps of Adina Pintilie’s controversial Golden Bear winner Touch Me Not, Marius Olteanu’s Monsters is a tragic saga that explores the social taboos surrounding sexual identity and female emancipation in modern-day Romania. It’s been over a decade since Tudor Giurgiu released the lesbian romance Love Sick. Since then, Romanian […]

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Berlin 2019: Fourteen review

★★★★☆ Fourteen, the follow-up to former Los Angeles Reader film critic Dan Sallitt’s incest drama The Unspeakable Act, is a subdued drama about a friendship ageing over time. A nuanced portrait of female camaraderie presented in all its messy complexity. Mara (Tallie Medel) and Jo (Norma Kuhling) have been best friends since they […]

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2018 Filmfest Hamburg round-up

This year’s Filmfest Hamburg coincided with the city’s football derby. A fiercely contested match between the city’s two biggest clubs, the game was a fitting metaphor for a festival undergoing its own identity crisis. CineVue were in attendance, and we’ve run-down our five favourite films at the festival. It’s been seven years since […]

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FEST – New Directors New Films Festival roundup

“If you give an audience all the answers they’ll forget you as soon as they leave the cinema. But, if you ask the right questions, they’ll think about you for days.” This was the advice of two-time Academy Award winner Asghar Farhadi as he delivered a masterclass to a group of burgeoning filmmakers […]

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IndieLisboa 2018: The Wild Boys review

★★★★☆ The debut feature from provocative French filmmaker Bertrand Mandico is a film of unadulterated artifice. An exhilarating and highly surreal tale of gender-warfare, The Wild Boys is a maximalist work of paperback eroticism that almost defies categorisation; a film that marries cinematic heritage with progressive ideas to create a genre and gender-bending […]

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IndieLisboa 2018: DRVO (A Árvore) review

★★★★☆ An old man and a young boy meet by a dying tree. They’ve both taken different paths to get here, but somehow they share the same memories. A deeply affecting vision of the lost paradise of childhood, André Gil Mata’s DRVO is a hypnotic trawling of individual suffering against the backdrop of […]