Movies

Let It Come Down: Joel Coen’s ‘The Tragedy of...

The Coen Brothers’ films are noted for their sardonic sense of humor, in the...

Carny Knowledge: ‘Nightmare Alley’ shines brilliantly, while ‘Being the...

Nightmare Alley, starring Tyrone Power and directed by Edmund Goulding, was just about the...

Slum Glory: Steven Spielberg’s remake of ‘West Side Story’...

It’s very, very difficult to find anything wrong with Steven Spielberg’s West Side Story....

Oh, Sister!: Just in time for the holidays, female...

Tonya Pinkins is a much-lauded stage actor who also performs in films. She was...

Couture Clash: Would-be epic bauble ‘House of Gucci’ loses...

Welcome to “Lives and Deaths of the Rich and Famous: Our Italian Cousins,” otherwise...

For the Culture: ‘Alice Street’ captures the history of...

Viewing for a second time Oakland filmmaker and director Spencer Wilkinson’s new documentary, Alice...

True West: Jane Campion’s ‘The Power of the Dog’...

Jane Campion’s The Power of the Dog is one of 2021’s best movies—intelligently written...

Rich and Strange: Those who tire of the legend...

Just how sorry are we supposed to feel for Lady Diana Spencer, Princess of...

Peace vs. War: Filmmaker Ôbayashi Nobuhiko’s ‘Labyrinth of Cinema’...

Japanese filmmaker Ôbayashi Nobuhiko is probably best known to North American audiences for House,...

Toil and Trouble: Our Halloween fright-flick sampler

We’re swimming in a tidal wave of horror movies right now. Entertainment-industry watchers evidently agree that horror—the perennial favorite genre of the young and eccentric—is now the magic formula to rescue empty theaters and harvest more eyeballs for streaming content as we—hopefully—enter the pandemic’s waning months. How to choose a fright flick? Be brave, trust the nose and take some chances. Here’s a quick list for our Halloween trial-by-ordeal.

Full Metal Junket

Ridley Scott’s The Last Duel combines bloody combat with sexual intrigue, smashingly Ridley Scott’s The...

Danger for Sale: A few things to look for...

Haynes’ latest film, 'The Velvet Underground', rates special handling because the Velvets were simultaneously more dangerous and more attractive than the rest. The new film is a hypnotic, kaleidoscopic, split-screen, rapid-montage, black-and-white documentary exercise in disorienting adulation, so thick with allusions that it would take a list to piece together the splintered impressions.

Sketches of Spain…And other eye-opening offerings from the East...

Legendary comic artist R. Crumb recalls that when he and Rodriguez started out, 'Comics were held in utter contempt by the educated upper class'—a fact that evidently spurred former outlaw biker and art-school student Rodriguez to épater les bourgeois. Says 'Maus' author, Art Spiegelman, 'The avant-garde was not following the commercial rules' with its lurid sex and violence. 'He [Rodriguez] always punched up,' declares writer Ishmael Reed. According to performer/columnist Susie Bright: 'Spain is a trickster and a classic satirical artist.' Cartoonist Ed Piskor credits Rodriguez with 'opening the doors to today’s graphic novels' with his classically trained drawings."

The Truth Hurts: Filmmaker Kurosawa Kiyoshi’s ‘Wife of a...

Publicity for 'Wife of a Spy' claims that Kurosawa’s multi-layered marital melodrama/war story—written by the director with Hamaguchi Ryûsuke and Nohara Tadashi—has a whiff of Alfred Hitchcock about it, perhaps with the devious, suspenseful romance of Notorious in mind. For us, Satoko and Yusaku’s tension-filled relationship owes just as much to the labyrinthine conspiracies and paranoia of director Fritz Lang.
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