Film Review: Initiation

Read More

Blu-Ray Review: Carla’s Song

Read More

Film Review: Zana

Read More

The filmmaker's father

Towards the end of the 1970s, the Chinese authorities had a major problem. The population of the country was threatening to spiral out of control and while the birth rate had been in relative decline for decades life expectancy was shooting up. The measures they put in place failed to halt this seemingly inexorable rise, …

Doyamoyee

Not all directors are equal, or treated equally. Especially in the way their work is perceived of celebrated in the Western world. While the likes of Kurosawa, Truffaut, Hitchcock, Tarkovsky and Fellini are lauded and almost worshipped by cinephiles, other filmmakers, such as Satyajit Ray, have found their bodies of work rather overlooked or underappreciated. …

The silent killer

Whilst most actors today seem to have been through a PR finishing school on how to answer interview questions, that has not always been the case. There was a time when the film industry was full of characters. However, there were few who could match Klaus Kinski when it came to intensity and volatility. While …

The Cold War threw up many challenges but one of the strangest, in hindsight, was the lack of information about the daily lives of people living behind the Iron Curtain. While we got inundated with propaganda, there was very little fact. Indeed, even now, our knowledge about this period largely comes courtesy of film and …

a mushroom cloud

The climate crisis is reaching a crunch point and there has never been as many people in positions of power wanting to change things for the better. Will the agreements struck in Paris and Glasgow be enough? Probably not, but there is at least, for once, a concerted effort to save the planet by the …

A Ukrainian soldier in the trenches

Due to advances in weaponry and military technology, trench warfare became prevalent in 1914 at the beginning of World War I. It started an age of martial attrition, where the defenders had the advantage and each metre of ground was gained through (often days and weeks of) blood, sweat and tears. With the arrival of …

Porn teacher defends herself

A global pandemic poses unique challenges for filmmakers. Each country has their own set of rules and regulation, which can change with little or no warning. How could it be possible to make a film within these parameters, ensuring the safety of the cast and crew was paramount? Many productions closed down. Others changed location …

Inspector Pao in action

While he might not be as well known as the likes of Johnnie To, John Woo, Tsui Hark or Jackie Chan outside of his native Hong Kong, Ringo Lam made a number of great films and was highly influential on countless filmmakers. Probably best known for City on Fire, which was one of the inspirations …

Mr Gentle and piano

There’s something rather appealing, and slightly worrying, about an eccentric English gentleman. Clearly well-educated and from a ‘good stock’, he saunters through life with flights of fantasy; always willing to share his dreams and stories with anyone who will listen. Nowadays, the adventurer is a dying breed. Certainly, in the sense of undertaking unusual and …

Master and driver

Since the advent of moving pictures there have always been long films. Abel Gance’s 1927 classic Napoleon, for example, clocked in at well over five hours. However, what is often described as ‘slow-cinema’ has become increasingly popular. The likes of Béla Tarr and Lav Diaz have made careers out of creating dense and sedate films. …