Favorite films

  • PlayTime
  • Trouble in Paradise
  • The Trial
  • L'Argent

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  • The Lost Daughter

    ★★★

  • Ascension

    ★★★½

  • The Hand of God

    ★★★½

  • Being the Ricardos

    ★★½

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  • It's Always Fair Weather

    It's Always Fair Weather

    ★★★★½

    The post-war hangover to follow Donen/Kelly's night out On the Town. Where their earlier collaboration was on the cusp of the 50s, and thus still mired in the earlier decade's lingering celebration of soldiers and the WWII victory, It's Always Fair Weather is firmly entrenched in the 50s expansion of consumerism and soul-sucking "suit" jobs designed to move every man, woman and child toward the elusive pursuit of the virtually unattainable American Dream. Whether through the brilliant passage-of-time montage that…

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  • The Bitter Stems

    The Bitter Stems

    ★★★★

    "Where The Beast Must Die sees the psychic split of its protagonist intensify throughout the film, The Bitter Stems relies on the narrative rupture of a mid-film twist to completely recalibrate the audience’s understanding of Alfredo and, indeed, everything we’ve seen until this point. The first half of the film surreptitiously takes on Alfredo’s paranoid perspective, painting the Hungarian refugee, Paar Liudas (Vassili Lambrinos), with whom he hatches a fraudulent mail-order journalism scheme, in a distinctly ambiguous light. But following…

  • The Beast Must Die

    The Beast Must Die

    ★★★★

    "Death and its inevitability loom large over Román Viñoly Barreto’s The Beast Must Die and Fernando Ayala’s The Bitter Stems. The former, from 1952, kicks into motion after the medicine of the titular “beast” has been poisoned, while the latter, from 1956, opens at the stroke of midnight just prior to a train ride that takes a man to the setting of a perfect murder. With equal aplomb, these intricately plotted, deeply cynical, and occasionally macabre Argentinian noirs descend into…

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  • The Third Generation

    The Third Generation

    ★★★★

    "The other day I had a dream that capitalists created terrorism in order to force the state to better protect the business community. Funny, isn't it?"

    "Germany for the Germans. Everyone else will be sent home."

    It's impossible not to relate Fassbinder's dense and challenging portrait of capital and leftist activists to today's political climate. The Third Generation, virtually unavailable for over 25 years, presents a confounding, chaotic world view where capitalism, anarchy and terrorism constantly overlap and the political…

  • Pickup on South Street

    Pickup on South Street

    ★★★★★

    Pickup on South Street, Sam Fuller’s brutal yet sensual masterpiece, begins on a speeding subway train, full of colliding bodies stuffed inside like canned sardines. No one speaks, but everyone glances; some at the floor or out the window, others at unsuspecting passengers, yet all attempting in one way or another to not betray what’s truly on their mind. Every initial glance is revealed to be misdirected until our anti-hero, Skip McCoy, bursts onto the scene to meet the sultry…