Discovering good movies, one bad movie at a time

My favorite piece of narration in Werner Herzog’s tremendous 2005 documentary Grizzly Man goes like this: “[I]n all the faces of all the bears that Treadwell ever filmed, I discover no kinship, no understanding, no mercy. I see only the overwhelming indifference of nature. To me, there is no such thing as a secret world […]

“Lunatic visionary cult director Sono Sion makes his English-language debut with a post-apocalyptic samurai Western starring Nicolas Cage” is a collection of words that feels like it was lab-created to end up with a kind of heavily self-aware “Weird”-in-square-quotes example of something too knowing and calculated in its what-the-fuck wildness to be authentic. And arguably, […]

Steve McQueen’s Small Axe project has been gestating almost as long as he’s had a career as a film director: for a full decade, he was attempting to put together what ended up as a five-part television anthology series of stories (some of them based on true events) about life among the West Indian population […]

Whether you consider it a strength, or the movie’s most damning flaw, I think this much cannot be denied: The Godfather, Part II knows the scale of the movie it’s following, and it is hellbent on topping it. 1972’s The Godfather, adapted from Mario Puzo’s 1969 crime novel, was never supposed to be one of […]

It’s almost certainly just random noise and not real evidence of a greater trend, but as I spend these weeks diving into the thrillers and horror films of the Australian film industry, I’m finding a lot more dead children than I’d expect to see in a similarly arbitrary sampling of Hollywood horror films. And with […]

Every Saturday in August, Brennan Klein will be subbing in for Summer of Blood by exploring a German krimi film from the 1960’s. Well, here we are. It’s the final week of our Summer of Krimi and we’ve reached the end of the line. The subgenre that started that fateful day in 1959 when the Germans first […]

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Every Saturday in August, Brennan Klein will be subbing in for Summer of Blood by exploring a German krimi film from the 1960’s. We’re approaching the end of our overview of the German krimi cycle, and as anyone who reads Summer of Blood surely knows by now, the tail end of a subgenre’s boom is when […]

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Every Saturday in August, Brennan Klein will be subbing in for Summer of Blood by exploring a German krimi film from the 1960’s. Now that we’ve skipped straight from the krimi subgenre’s inception to the middle of the boom, let’s stop and smell the roses for a while in 1964. This weekend we’re taking a look at […]

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Every Saturday in August, Brennan Klein will be subbing in for Summer of Blood by exploring a German krimi film from the 1960’s. When last we left the German krimi, it was just being birthed upon an unsuspecting world in 1959’s Fellowship of the Frog. Now we shall alight in 1964, smack dab in the height of […]

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[Editor’s Note: Although I’m taking the summer off from looking at violent thrillers & horror movies, Brennan Klein has very kindly offered to take up the slack. Every Saturday this month, he’ll be taking us on a tour of the German crime genre that led into the Italian crime genre that led into the American […]

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Part of me wonders if Kevin Feige is really just sticking it to Amy Pascal for the sake of it. The whole thing about Spider-Man in movies since 2016 is a bit tedious and wrapped up with corporate nonsense, but the basic thing to keep in mind is that Columbia Pictures, a subsidiary of a […]

Damned if I know why “Iranian filmmaker directing European art cinema” has turned out to be such a robust, reliable formula, but here we are with Everybody Knows, writer-director Asghar Farhadi’s eighth feature and the first made entirely outside of his home country, and the pattern holds. This is, admittedly, not necessarily the consensus opinion […]