Favorite films

  • Heimat
  • The Last of England
  • Pierrot le Fou
  • Cabaret

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  • The Assistant

    ★★★

  • Atlantics

    ★★★★

  • The Other Side of the Wind

    ★★★★

  • I'm Thinking of Ending Things

    ★★★½

Recent reviews

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  • My Son John

    My Son John

    ★★½

    This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.

    I watched this as it's listed in Jonathan Rosenbaum's canon, and it turned out to be one of his stranger selections, interesting mainly for reasons that likely weren't part of the original intention. It's Leo McCarey doing an unashamedly appalling piece of high Cold War propaganda, in which a small town mom begins to realise her favourite grownup son is a Communist sympathiser involved in pro-Soviet espionage. The script could have been written in J Edgar Hoover's office, regurgitating irrational…

  • Le Chemineau

    Le Chemineau

    ★★½

    This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.

    This early film version of a key incident from Victor Hugo's lengthy and much-adapted novel Les misérables (1862) broadly complies to the tableau-style conventions of much early cinema but it does include a couple of interesting shots. In the opening scene, the itinerant ex-convict Valjean walks directly towards the camera until his face fills the frame. He's taken in and fed by Monseigneur Myriel, and while they're still eating, the camera tracks sideways along the open fourth wall of the…

Popular reviews

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  • 25th Hour

    25th Hour

    ★★★★

    This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.

    What kicks this up a notch from being a good film to a great film for me is the scene where Monty pressurises his best friend Frank into beating him up so he'll be less attractive to sexual predators in prison, while their close friend Jake looks on. What could have been an opportunity to indulge in sensationalist violence under cover of a superficial 'examination' of machismo and masculinity becomes a wrenching and emotional scene, extremely hard to watch not…

  • Lichtspiel: Opus I

    Lichtspiel: Opus I

    ★★★★½

    This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.

    1001 films that will reward your time boxd.it/1FRRk (9th edition 2021).

    At the birth of cinema, all films were experimental films, yet for a medium emerging in an era of rapid technological change and modernist thinking, the content of mainstream film-making rapidly succumbed to melodramatic Victorian moralising. While there were early examples of artists using the medium deliberately to challenge conventional ideas of representation and reality (Émile Cohl is an example: see Fantasmagorie (1908)), it wasn’t until the ‘rules’ of…