Top That! My Ten Favorite Films of 2019

It’s Oscar weekend, so I figured now is as good a time as any to announce my ten favorite movies of 2019. There’s not a whole lot of science that goes into my process; it’s mostly gut feeling that determines what goes into this list and how I’m arranging it. The emotional response is theContinue reading “Top That! My Ten Favorite Films of 2019”

Mission of Honor (Hurricane)

Release: Friday, March 15, 2019  →Netflix Written by: Robert Ryan; Alastair Galbraith Directed by: David Blair David Blair’s World War II film arrived on American shores earlier this year as Mission of Honor. It was originally titled Hurricane. Just to be clear this is not an account of violent weather but instead one of heroic actions taken by aContinue reading “Mission of Honor (Hurricane)”

Under the Shadow

Release: Friday, October 7, 2016 (limited) [Netflix] Written by: Babak Anvari Directed by: Babak Anvari For the better part of the 1980s tension between Iran and Iraq had been escalating into large-scale armed conflict, an eight-year period of violence recognized today as the Iran-Iraq War. Then-president Saddam Hussein, hoping to pounce on Iran in post-Islamic Revolution turmoil, invaded without warningContinue reading “Under the Shadow”

Your Name.

Release: Friday, April 7, 2017 [Theater] Written by: Makoto Shinkai Directed by: Makoto Shinkai To say Makoto Shinkai’s massively acclaimed anime is ambitious would be an understatement. Your Name. seems to be an opus on everything from teen awkwardness to the relationship between time and memory to astrology. At its core it’s a grand romantic tale but fastened to that areContinue reading “Your Name.”

Divines

Release: Friday, November 18, 2016 (Netflix) [Netflix] Written by: Uda Benyamina; Romain Compingt; Malik Rumeau  Directed by: Uda Benyamina  Divines provides a bleak but brilliant look into the lives of two teens in the Parisian banlieue. It follows Dounia and her best friend Maimouna as they seek out ways of making quick money so they can one day breakContinue reading “Divines”

Cemetery of Splendor

Release: Friday, March 4, 2016 (limited)  [Vimeo] Written by: Apichatpong Weerasethakul  Directed by: Apichatpong Weerasethakul My  first review of a Thai film is brought to you courtesy of Mr. Rumsey’s Film Related Musings. James is the guy running the show over there and he graciously made this incredibly unique and moving film available to me. Please check out hisContinue reading “Cemetery of Splendor”

Jafar Panahi’s Taxi (Taxi Tehran)

Release: Friday, October 2, 2015 [Netflix] Written by: Jafar Panahi Directed by: Jafar Panahi Jafar Panahi is an Iranian filmmaker seemingly undeterred by the consequences of his actions. Those consequences have, as a matter of fact, formed the basis of some of his oeuvre, such as his acclaimed 2011 documentary This is Not a Film, wherein he captured a day inContinue reading “Jafar Panahi’s Taxi (Taxi Tehran)”

Embrace of the Serpent

Release: Wednesday, February 17, 2016 (limited) [Vimeo] Written by: Ciro Guerra; Jacques Toulemonde Vidal Directed by: Ciro Guerra This  review is my latest contribution to Mr. Rumsey’s Film Related Musings. I would like to give a shout-out to James for allowing me to talk about this unique cinematic experience.  Embrace of the Serpent (El Abrazo de La Serpiente) was Colombia’sContinue reading “Embrace of the Serpent”

Bølgen (The Wave)

Release: Friday, August 28, 2015  [Redbox] Written by: John Kåre Raake; Harald Rosenløw-Eeg Directed by: Roar Uthaug Norway’s official submission for the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film at the 88th Academy Awards failed to garner a nomination. While I would like to say it was their loss for turning away a disaster film that puts mostContinue reading “Bølgen (The Wave)”

The Purge: Election Year

Release: Friday, July 1, 2016 [Theater] Written by: James DeMonaco Directed by: James DeMonaco I am convinced the French marketing for the third Purge film (see above) is the most responsible form of it we have. The Purge: Election Year manages to be as inane as it looks and here is a movie poster that pulls no punches whenContinue reading “The Purge: Election Year”