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CINEMA

how ‘original copy’ looks candidly into mumbai’s gentrification

There’s dust in the air and the sun radiates through floating orbs and onto the faces of sign painter Sheikh Rehman and his apprentice. They are in Alfred Talkies, one of the remaining analogue cinemas in Mumbai. The window, which the men are sitting by, looks palatial. A break from this fantastical moment comes when …

arthur abel reviews ‘hounds of love’

hounds of love is a film. i am reviewing this film. i am reviewing the film hounds of love. it is the debut film from australian director ben young. i was asked to review this film because someone else didnt. the premise is that a seventeen-year-old girl gets abducted by two serial killers.

dissecting the sick genius of flying lotus’ ‘kuso’

Man, this film is satisfying. It’s a visceral experience cobbled together from all the dark, sick shit you’ve ever seen. Remember goatse? Remember one man one jar? Remember lemonparty? Remember when you accidently saw someone’s head get cut off after clicking on that weird looking gif? Those images you saw that you can never get …

how ‘i am not your negro’ crafts an evocative and empowering portrait of black america

There is no doubt in my mind that James Baldwin was one of the most significant writers of the 20th century, and I Am Not Your Negro serves as both a history lesson and an introduction to one of the greatest writers of the 20th century. Raoul Peck uses an unfinished, 30 page draft of Baldwin’s …

this is why ‘free fire’ misses its mark

Have you ever been to see a film that everyone in the screening seemed to think was really funny and engaging, while you just sat there bemused and thinking: “this is a bit shite”? Well, that’s how I felt watching Ben Wheatley’s divisive sixth feature Free Fire. As I looked around the audience in hysterics, …

how ‘the woman who left’ reshapes movie revenge

If you look at it solely from the perspective of the mention of the ‘revenge thriller’ in its synopsis, you’d think that this four-hour long, black-and-white Filipino film had very little going for it. In reality, it’s a shining example of how the idea of retribution on screen flourishes in the hands of female protagonists.

why pablo larraín’s ‘neruda’ is sheer fantasy

To say that Pablo Larraín has a talent for biographical filmmaking would be an understatement. What he does with the genre is much more interesting than a strict documentation of a person or a period in their life. In Neruda, Larraín’s film about the Chilean poet and politician Pablo Neruda, he takes the skeleton of …

decoding the complex moral compass of paul verhoeven’s ‘elle’

If I’ve taken one lesson from Paul Verhoeven’s rape-revenge drama Elle, it would be to never fuck with an angry French woman. I’ve also learned that hunting down your stalker is always done best when wearing killer outfits. Watching this, the film that has caused shockwaves amongst cinephiles and won its lead actress, Isabelle Huppert, a Golden Globe, I often …

how ‘dark night’ refuses to address our sick fascination with mass shootings

Despite the fact that they leave a mark on so many, mass shootings have an air of mystique around them. They create monsters; the kind that are immortalised in TV news broadcasts and Wikipedia pages. Unless we scour for them, we never witness the events that led them to that moment. All that we’re aware of is …

‘certain women’ is a fragile drama about finding yourself

Laura (Laura Dern) works as a lawyer, and has been trying to convince her client that this case can’t be won. But after 8 months of hard work, she gives up and suggests a male lawyer who tells the client exactly the same thing. This time the client agrees, proving that sexism is still present. Gina (Michelle Williams) is …