Bright Wall/ Dark Room

Bright Wall/ Dark Room


A different lens on films. No hot takes, lots of long reads.

("Favorite films" are the four films most recently featured on the site)

Favorite films

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Recent reviews

  • Invasion of the Body Snatchers

    Invasion of the Body Snatchers

    You’ve seen the image on Twitter or you’ve seen it in your dreams. The gaping mouth, the white of the eyes. The finger pointing straight into the lens. The terrible moment of mirror revelation: I know what you are.

    Philip Kaufman’s Invasion of the Body Snatchers climaxes in this primal scene of recognition. Being seen—really seen—is in some way the most elemental human drive. We spend our whole lives searching for ourselves in others, relying on our romantic partners, our…

  • The Grand Budapest Hotel

    The Grand Budapest Hotel

    I remember The Grand Budapest Hotel, and I remember those swirling lights and the clutched breath and the deep longing. I think about that one frame of Agatha, frozen in time, holding her lover’s gaze—holding our gaze—as the darkness briefly clouds her face. Every time Zero and the writer and Wes Anderson tell me the story, I see that darkness and I face the irretrievability. I don’t feel nostalgia; I feel regret. For Zubrowka and everything it represents. For the grandness of the Grand Budapest. For Agatha.

    -B.C. Wallin, One Nostalgia Later

Popular reviews

  • Pride & Prejudice

    Pride & Prejudice

    There are a number of striking, iconic frames in Joe Wright’s 2005 adaptation of Pride & Prejudice, but I want to talk about that shot of Darcy’s hand.

    The moment in question comes just after Lizzy’s visit to Netherfield Park to check on her sister Jane, who has fallen ill and must recover at the Bingley estate before returning home to Longbourn. After an afternoon spent volleying Caroline Bingley’s tediously pointed barbs about her family and sparring with Darcy over what…

  • Paris, Texas

    Paris, Texas

    "Travis’ commitment to getting lost is greater than his desire to be loved. It happens. When we can no longer stand ourselves, we can no longer stand others. We fling ourselves from the burden of love into escapism: a substance, a job, a far-off desert. A few personal events can spark this kind of reaction; most commonly, shame. If we can understand shame, we can understand why a man would abandon his family for the desert. Why a man walks alone until he collapses."

    Read the full essay here: