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A New Look at Fassbinder  

A New Look at Fassbinder  

BY STEVE ERICKSON | Sometimes it feels like the late German director Rainer Werner Fassbinder’s image as a bad boy has outlived his films. While Robert Katz’s tabloid bio “Love Is Colder Than Death” (named after Fassbinder’s first film) remains out of print, documentaries like Rosa von Praunheim’s “Fassbinder’s Women” and numerous supplements on Criterion releases […]

Power Beyond Words

Power Beyond Words

BY GARY M. KRAMER | Irish filmmaker Paddy Breathnach’s crowd-pleasing “Viva” is set in the world of Cuban drag queens. Jesús (Héctor Medina) is a hairdresser who works for Mama (Luis Alberto García), a performer at a local bar. One night at the club, Jesús unexpectedly reunites with his long-lost father, Angel (Jorge Perugorría), a […]

Thinly Veiled, Then Overt

Thinly Veiled, Then Overt

BY GARY M. KRAMER | A new retrospective series of old films made by queer filmmakers or about queer characters unspools at the Film Society of Lincoln Center April 22 through May 1. The 23 features and 24 shorts range from early silents and talkies to more experimental and avant-garde films. While certainly not comprehensive […]

David Hockney’s Art of Deep Feeling

David Hockney’s Art of Deep Feeling

BY GARY M. KRAMER | Randall Wright’s marvelous documentary “Hockney” is a profound appreciation of the celebrated gay artist. The film captures its subject through a mélange of quotes from Hockney, anecdotes by friends, and outstanding archival footage and photographs. Then there is the artwork itself. Wright emphasizes the painter’s unique way of seeing in his […]

In Between Jobs

In Between Jobs

BY STEVE ERICKSON | French director Stéphane Brizé’s “The Measure of a Man” could have been made to illustrate the concept of “microaggression.” While avoiding physical violence –– and even emotional sadism on the director’s part –– it’s a parade of subtle humiliations for its hero, Thierry (Vincent Lindon). A 51-year-old who has been out of […]

Modern Estrangement

Modern Estrangement

BY STEVE ERICKSON | The Film Society of Lincoln Center’s “Art of the Real” series is one of three major documentary festivals in New York. Where “Doc-NYC,” held at the IFC Center and SVA, generally embraces more formally conventional work and the MoMA program “Documentary Fortnight” emphasizes its international focus, “Art of the Real” holds a […]

Ridden Hard  

Ridden Hard  

BY GARY M. KRAMER | The striking film “Neon Bull” is set in the Sertão region of northeastern Brazil, which is home to Iremar (Juliano Cazarré), a vaquero, or cowboy. Iremar works with Galega (Maeve Jinkings) and Zé (Carlos Pessoa) doing rodeo shows. Iremar and Zé prepare bulls for a sport where cowboys on horseback pull […]

Death Invites an Audience

Death Invites an Audience

BY STEVE ERICKSON | Belgian lesbian director Chantal Akerman’s “No Home Movie,” which depicts her mother’s final days, would be an extremely sad film under any circumstances. However, it must play very differently in the wake of Akerman’s suicide last fall than it did for audiences who caught its initial film festival screenings in 2015. […]

Bubble Boys & Girls

Bubble Boys & Girls

BY STEVE ERICKSON | In the early 1990s, Manhattan’s Chinatown had three movie theaters showing Hong Kong films. Now they’re all gone, and there’s not even a DVD store left in the neighborhood. It’s fitting that Hong Kong director Johnnie To’s “Office” is getting a week-long run in the 3D version in which it was originally […]

Talking the Talk

Talking the Talk

BY GARY M. KRAMER | “Take Me to the River” is writer/ director Matt Sobel’s auspicious debut feature about California teen Ryder’s (Logan Miller) awkward family reunion in Nebraska. Ryder wants to announce he is gay to his extended family, but his parents Cindy (Robin Weigert) and Don (Richard Schiff) express their misgivings. They think […]

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