In some ways, Jules Dassin’s Night and the City (1950) is an unlikely noir, which (along with an icy reception at the time from critics) might help explain why it’s not the first example of the genre that springs to mind — no femme fatale, no particular mystery, no play-by-play heist gone wrong, a curious fixation on wrestling, of all things.More
The road trip belongs to an incredibly particular technological moment.
There must be an element of protraction; it must take long enough to get from point A to point B to generate enough plot to keep the opening and closing credits 90-plus minutes apart.More
It’s an assumption, an article of faith, but it always bears repeating: every best-of list is a subjective snapshot, bound by what we could or would see, the genres to which we gravitate, the last-minute audibles called because we simply can’t bear to leave out a title.More
Listen, guys, I’m going to let you in on a big secret: I’m woefully unqualified to write for any movie site. And of the many reasons why, one always comes up around this time of year. I don’t live near any art house or smaller theaters, so unless movies come to the theater attached to the nearby mall (hey, $5 matinees every day!), I don’t get to see them until home video, usually the year after.More
Back in January of this year, inspired by the folks at WIF and the initiative they created, I resolved to watch 52 films by women directors in 2017. With only a few days left on the calendar, it seems like a good time to check back in on this “challenge.”
“Challenge” definitely belongs in quotation marks here.More
There is a recurring image in The Water Protectors of Wakpa Waste — the new documentary about anti-pipeline and extractive energy struggles on the Cheyenne River Sioux Reservation in South Dakota, and the people waging those struggles — that sticks in the mind: small icicles clinging to concertina wire.More
RoboCop didn’t predict shit.
I see certain statements come up a lot in pop culture-literate leftist circles — and I am afraid this is going to be a Political Piece, one that assumes shared beliefs (although maybe no more than simply a recognition that something is wrong in the world) — that RoboCop predicted our world today.More
The premise of The Lake House — that two lonely singles, Keanu Reeves and Sandra Bullock, can fall in love by sending messages back and forth to one another through the time-travelling mailbox outside the home that they both, on different occasions, owned — opens itself up to two smart-ass questions, or maybe two smart-ass fields of questions.More