Category Archives: Movies

Review: The Wild Goose Lake

Mainland Chinese cinema was relatively late to film noir, especially in relation to Hong Kong and other Asian countries like South Korea, Japan, and the Philippines, all of which have reshaped the genre in distinctive ways. But once a younger … Continue reading

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Review: Martin Eden

I haven’t read Jack London’s novel, which is supposedly an autobiographical affair outlining his genesis as a writer, but based on his other writings that I have read and the general tenor of autobiographical novels by writers, I can probably … Continue reading

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Review: Vitalina Varela

There’s a subset of narrative film directors who work almost exclusively with non-professional actors, which may sound like an oxymoron since these performers are in all likelihood paid for their efforts, but in most cases they only appear in one … Continue reading

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Review: Bring Me Home

Bring Me Home is, I think, the third missing child movie I’ve seen this year, which, given the attenuated nature of my moviegoing pastime in the COVID era (I tend to watch TV series at home), practically makes it a … Continue reading

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Review: Hitsville: The Making of Motown

Right away, I should mention that this documentary about the pioneering Black-owned independent record label was authorized and to a certain extent supervised by Motown’s founder Berry Gordy. It’s essentially a PR gambit and looks like it. The narrative emphasis … Continue reading

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BIFF2020: Press Conference

Last week, the organizers of the 25th annual Busan International Film Festival announced somewhat abruptly that the festival, originally scheduled to take place Oct. 7-16, would be postponed for two weeks and would instead begin on Oct. 21. It has … Continue reading

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Review: Forbidden Dream

Given the enormous output of the South Korean film industry, even during its occasionally fallow times, it’s not surprising that certain genres and subjects get covered to death. One is the storied Joseon Dynasty, when a good deal of what … Continue reading

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Review: In Syria

Narrative films that take as their subject current affairs face a dilemma in terms of execution. How much of the story will be irrelevant or even incorrect in years to come? What sort of viewpoint should the direction take, or … Continue reading

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Review: Booksmart

This American teen comedy, focusing almost exclusively on the girls’ experience, is blessed with one of the best titles of recent memory. “Booksmart” implies a brain full of stuff derived from reading materials and outside sources rather than from experience. … Continue reading

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Review: The Divine Fury

Though Korean movies still find wider distribution in Japan than do movies from other countries outside of the U.S., some Korean movies have an easier time of it than others. The fact that this occult actioner features Park Seo-jun, who … Continue reading

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