The question of what happens after this life has plagued humanity for centuries. Nothing, Nothingness, Valhalla, Heaven, or Hell: these and others have all been theorized as the next step once we’ve shuffled off this mortal coil and moved into… Read More ›
Actors Donnie Yen and Nicholas Tse bring their dazzling fists of fury to writer/director Benny Chan’s final film: action thriller “Raging Fire.”
Which would you rather do: the hard right thing or the easy wrong thing? A decision like this is simple when the stakes are low, like what’s for dinner: cooking it yourself when you have all the ingredients but are… Read More ›
Identity and moral responsibility are at the heart of Lee Yong-ju’s sci-fi thriller “Seobok.” [Fantasia International Film Festival]
What defines “personhood”? This is a complex question that gets debated quite a bit, specifically in regard to pre-birth healthcare. Is it from the moment of cell division, the presence of a heartbeat, or the moment a life reaches prime… Read More ›
Director Nick Gillespie’s second feature, “Paul Dood’s Deadly Lunch Break,” utilizes conventions, only to usurp them, crafting a scruples comedy tipped in horror. [Fantasia International Film Festival]
In this life there are few things worse than being misunderstood, to possess the feeling that those around you can’t see about you what you see in yourself. This schism between social reflection and personal identity has been the source… Read More ›
Welcome to Fistful of Features, a celebration of film preservation through physical media and the discussion of cinematic treasures to maintain their relevance in the cultural lexicon. Today we’ll be discussing an independent horror film from the festival circuit that… Read More ›
Writer/director Andrei Tarkovsky’s meditative “Mirror” is his fifth film to join The Criterion Collection.
Spine #1084 of The Criterion Collection is writer/director Andrei Tarkovsky’s Mirror, the fifth of his films to be added to the collection. A Russian filmmaker, Tarkovsky helmed 12 projects over his lifetime, including one short and one made-for-TV movie. Upon… Read More ›
Adventurous, heartrending, and undeniably raw, “CODE NAME: Nagasaki” offers a reimagined documentary told through the language of cinema. [North Bend Film Festival]
When it comes to self-discovery, there is no one right path, no universal means for those who walk this earth to become comfortable with themselves. This is the struggle, the burden we all share, whether we’ll admit it or not…. Read More ›
“Peace by Chocolate” isn’t tempered to satiate an instant craving, but to preserve a legacy. [Tribeca Festival]
Immigrant stories are treated as all-to-common and extraordinary in the same breath, especially in the United States and Canada. The majority of people who live in both countries did not originate there and each possess a legacy of doing terrible… Read More ›
Despite mixed success with the action and emotional resonance of the drama, you can still see the promise within “Silat Warriors: Deed of Death.”
Though the highest grossing films in Malaysia mostly come from the international market, one shouldn’t discount the country for its own cinematic successes. There’s docudrama The Big Durian (2003), the first Malaysian film to screen at the Sundance Film Festival,… Read More ›
Beware the traps laid within Arrow Video’s restoration of “Irezumi” as the path made lead to your peril.
In the opening moments of Yasuzô Masumura’s Irezumi (1966), we witness a man drug a woman, then design and ink a spider tattoo on her back. As he works on the floor, bent over her, her only reaction is to… Read More ›
Over the last few years in America there’s been a surge of “gun fu” films: The Matrix (1999), Equilibrium (2002), all the way up to the recent John Wick series. It’s not that the combination of martial arts and weaponry… Read More ›
Director Yasuzô Masumura’s 1958 satire “Giants and Toys” is remarkably prescient of today’s ailments.
It’s rarely more than coincidence when a piece of art intersects with moments in history neatly. Black Panther (2018) released about a year into the Trump presidency, a film in sharp contrast against an administration dealing with accusations of white… Read More ›
A young girl and her mother are riding a subway train when an accident occurs, killing the mother and leaving the daughter injured but alive. Her father, a military man, comes home from active duty to care for his daughter… Read More ›
Returning to the director’s seat for the second time, Hong Won-chan trades murder most foul within the blue collar arena for the underbelly of Asia and Southeast Asia in Deliver Us From Evil (다만 악에서 구하소서). In a film that’s… Read More ›
Zhang Yimou’s spy thriller “Cliff Walkers” subverts expectations at every turn, offering a meal for hungry audiences.
Writer/director Zhang Yimou is many things, but subtle is not one of them. His projects often feature beautiful cinematography and elegant performances while exploring the complexities of humankind, resulting in films that are often far more poetic than narratively straight…. Read More ›
From Well Go USA, the distributor that brought you such films as The Villainess, Synchronic, The Swordsman, and Better Days, comes the action thriller Deliver Us From Evil from director Hong Won-chan. Ahead of its May 25th home release, the wonderful folks at Well… Read More ›
Arrow Video’s 2K restoration of “Death Has Blue Eyes” exemplifies their mission of cinematic preservation.
Death Has Blue Eyes (To koritsi vomva) is an easy film to summarize but a difficult one to describe. It’s a science fiction thriller in a sexploitation package. Beyond this, though, is where the film gets tricky due to a… Read More ›
The Criterion Collection edition of writer/director Olivier Assayas’s Irma Vep is two-discs packed with enticing materials.
Writer/director Olivier Assayas’s Irma Vep is many things at once. It’s a comedic look at the making of a film, capturing the swirling chaos as various departments and personalities come together to create art. It’s a dramatic piece exploring how… Read More ›
According to the press notes for Call for Dreams, Israeli director Ran Slavin started the project in pursuit of a “new cinematic form.” Slavin began with the idea to collect dreams from strangers that he could use as inspiration for… Read More ›
February 2021 saw the theatrical release of a new Studio Ghibli film, Earwig and the Witch, and it wasn’t quite as well received as hoped. While the switch from hand-drawn animation to 3D CG was, initially, off-putting, the real issue… Read More ›