Discovering good movies, one bad movie at a time

One cannot talk about Memoria (if one is an American, anyway) without talking about the simply batshit release strategy that its director, Apichatpong Weerasethakul, and its U.S. Distributor, Neon, have concocted for it. In short: one screen at a time in North America, one week at a time, and it will theoretically just float from […]

I won’t call Monos the best film I’ve seen in 2019. That’s a peculiar way to start a review, I know, but I’m doing it in order to make what might even been a bigger claim: Monos is the most exciting film I’ve seen in 2019. Some of that excitement comes from the undeniable appeal […]

2015’s Embrace of the Serpent, director Ciro Guerra’s third film, was a story of indigenous traditions in Colombia being corrupted and overwritten by an encounter with Westerners. It’s also one of the most remarkable sui generis films of the 2010s, a film that takes place in history but also feels outside of it; draws upon […]

There’s something deliciously off-kilter about folding a story about the abuse and genocide of indigenous South American cultures into what amounts to a mismatched buddy comedy (minus any jokes), and for that alone, Embrace of the Serpent – Colombia’s first-ever nominee in the Best Foreign Language Film category at the Oscars – would deserve our […]

Screens at CIFF: 10/16 & 10/18 & 10/19World premiere: 16 August, 2013, Gramado Film Festival There are critics whose first word on Chasing Fireflies would be about its tender but not sentimental depiction of a reunion between father and daughter; there are critics whose first word on Chasing Fireflies would be to consider the film’s […]

Screens at CIFF: 10/7 & 10/8 World premiere: 30 September, 2011, Biarritz Latin Film Festival There is something about animation: a way it has of making everything it touches seem more creative and abstract, maybe, with the result being that stories which would be entirely uncompelling in live action get to cheat their way into […]