Film reviews and more


Film Review: Sound of Metal

★★★★☆ Darius Marder’s first directing credit since 2008’s documentary, Loot, Sound of Metal is an astonishing accomplishment for both its long-nascent director and its British star, Riz Ahmed, for whom his turn as heavy metal drummer Ruben represents a career-best […]

Film Review: Nomadland

★★★★★ Adapted from Jessica Bruder’s non-fiction book Nomadland: Surviving America in the Twenty-First Century, the Oscar and Bafta-winning Nomadland is writer and director Chloé Zhao’s third feature-length film and is a beautiful and compassionate portrait of people living on the […]

Film Review: Minari

★★★★☆ Having charmed audiences at Sundance over a year ago, Lee Isaac Chung’s Minari finally makes its way to UK screens. Drawing on his own South Korean heritage, and experience of growing up in rural Arkansas, the director’s poignant, very […]

Film Review: Apples

★★★★☆ “It’s the end of the line,” says a bus driver as he wakes a man who has fallen asleep on his route. Where was his stop? Does he not remember his name? Opening with an end, a journey unfinished, […]

Film Review: Black Bear

★★★★☆ Led by a tour de force performance as savage, unpredictable and frightening as the film’s titular ursine, Black Bear stars Aubrey Plaza in stellar form as a writer-director seeking inspiration, in this bamboozling psychological character study. Art appears to […]

Film Review: Godzilla vs. Kong

★★☆☆☆ Two years after Godzilla took his place as the alpha kaiju, old atomic breath has gone to ground. Meanwhile, the simian king of Skull Island has been contained in a Truman Show-esque monitoring station after a storm destroyed his […]

Film Review: Undine

★★★☆☆ Floating somewhere between drama and fantasy, myth and reality, Christian Petzold’s Undine is a beguiling, other-worldly love story between a diver and a tour guide – or is she a mermaid? Brought to modern-day Berlin from the depths of […]

Film Review: The Mauritanian

★★☆☆☆ Expressly out of sight, with the intention of being out of mind, there were only so many monikers – Gitmo, Camp X-Ray – and so many excuses, pieces of questionable legislation, that the US government could throw at their […]

Film Review: Tina

★★★★☆ “Things are not always the way they look, you know.” Behind the forced smiles and false bonhomie of replies to inane talk-show hosts, hidden truths lie. Daniel Lindsay and T.J. Martin’s Tina digs deep into the past, the resilience […]

Film Review: Stray

★★★★☆ The saying goes that in the movies you should never work with children or animals. Acclaimed documentary short filmmaker Elizabeth Lo proves the latter part of this old adage to be complete nonsense with her feature debut, Stray. Following the […]

Film Review: The Father

★★★★★ Are any of old age’s trials as terrifying to contemplate or heart-breaking to witness as the gradual erosion of self that dementia wreaks? In his astonishingly assured debut feature, French playwright-turned-director Florian Zeller handles the mental decline of an […]

Film Review: Ammonite

★★★☆☆ “Last year at this time we had snow, and now it’s nice.” An earth-shattering, potentially life-altering sea-change occurs behind closed doors for two women living under the constraints of Victorian conservatism in Francis Lee‘s Ammonite. Encompassing the cold, muted […]

Film Review: The Legend of the Stardust Brothers

★★★★☆ Japanese director Tezuka Macoto’s cult 1985 musical is granted a delirious and welcome encore in this re-release. Losing none of its joie de vivre, humour, or heart, The Legend of the Stardust Brothers is a broad, bonkers, and irrepressible […]

Film Review: Los Conductos

★★★★★ Since his first short, La impresión de una guerra, debuted in 2015 Colombian director Camilo Restrepo quickly drew notice on the festival circuit, following up with 2016’s Cilaos and La bouche in 2017. Now, the imaginative canvas on which […]

Film Review: The Columnist

★★☆☆☆ Femke Boot (Katja Herbers), an outspoken and successful writer a popular Dutch newspaper, is coming under increasing attack from a legion of online, exclusively male trolls. When she discovers that one of them is her inconsiderate neighbour, Femke snaps […]

Film Review: Poly Styrene: I Am a Cliché

★★★★☆ Celeste Bell reassembles her mother’s life, reclaims her image and recalls their own troubled relationship in Poly Styrene: I Am a Cliché. Co-directed with Paul Sng, it is an affecting, delicately balanced documentary of conflictual opposites, mental trauma and […]

Film Review: Notturno

★★★★☆ All the world’s a stage for veteran documentary filmmaker Gianfranco Rosi. Notturno, his latest piece of deeply humanist cinematic theatre, concerns itself with the aftermath of the military coups, authoritarianism and foreign imperialism that have plagued the Middle East […]