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Frankness Without Exploitation

Frankness Without Exploitation

BY STEVE ERICKSON | Dan Sickles and Antonio Santini’s “Dina” shows a rare attention to form for a documentary about a couple with Asperger’s Syndrome that could easily have become a pity party. For a 10-minute stretch, it never leaves a bench, although the camera is placed in different set-ups, the time of day changes, and […]

Hollywood MIA at Lincoln Center

Hollywood MIA at Lincoln Center

BY STEVE ERICKSON | There’s something new about the 55th edition of the New York Film Festival that may not be apparent at first glance. There’s basically no participation from conventional Hollywood studios. The festival has not given up on showing mainstream cinema, such as the opening night film (Richard Linklater’s “Last Flag Flying”; Sep. 28, 6 […]

The Mouse that Roared

The Mouse that Roared

BY GARY M. KRAMER | Coinciding with the publication of “Logical Family,” a memoir by the San Francisco-based author best known for “Tales of the City,” is Jennifer M. Kroot’s adulatory documentary “The Untold Tales of Armistead Maupin.” The film offers extended interviews with the author as well as his celebrity friends, including Laura Linney and […]

Divas and Tough Guys

Divas and Tough Guys

BY DAVID NOH | I don’t think I am alone in regretting that I was not in New York in 1962 to catch Judy Garland’s much-lauded Carnegie Hall concert. I am able to say, however, that I was at the Nederlander Theatre this past Sunday, September 24, to see Patti LuPone at the Broadway Cares/ Equity […]

The Year of Living Precariously

The Year of Living Precariously

BY GARY M. KRAMER | Gay writer and director Vincent Sabella’s feature debut, “Elizabeth Blue” is an intimate and intense drama about the title character (Anna Schafer), who suffers from schizophrenia. At the opening of the film, Elizabeth tells her mother, Carol (Kathleen Quinlan), that she is being released from a mental institution and moving in […]

Shoes You Can Hang on Your Wall

Shoes You Can Hang on Your Wall

BY GARY M. KRAMER | Manolo knows shoes. His name is synonymous with high fashion footwear. He has collaborated with designers around the globe, and his pumps, mules, and kitten heels have been featured in popular culture from “Sex and the City” to Sophia Coppola’s film “Marie Antoinette.” Now, there is “Manolo: The Boy Who Made […]

Keeping Them at Bay

Keeping Them at Bay

BY STEVE ERICKSON | Theo Anthony’s “Rat Film” is the most original and unique documentary I’ve seen this year. It ties together two subjects that, at first, might not seem to have anything in common: rats and the history of segregation and institutional racism in Baltimore. If it resembles any other film, it’s Errol Morris’ […]

Alone in the Crowd

Alone in the Crowd

BY GARY M. KRAMER | A poignant, compelling, character study, “Nobody’s Watching” is focused on Nico (Guillermo Pfening), a gay Argentine actor adrift in New York City, practically invisible. Caring for his friend Andrea’s (Elena Roger) baby, Theo, Nico sits with other nannies in the park. They think he doesn’t speak Spanish and that he resembles […]

A Doctor’s Conscience

A Doctor’s Conscience

BY STEVE ERICKSON | With their third film, “La Promesse,” Belgian directors Jean-Pierre and Luc Dardenne essentially reinvented neo-realism and made it relevant in European cinema again. Most Americans at the time probably thought they were brand-new filmmakers when “La Promesse” was released in 1997. I know that I did myself, but they had actually made […]

Sadistic Brilliance Cut Down Young

Sadistic Brilliance Cut Down Young

BY GARY M. KRAMER | Director Stephen Frears’ film “Prick Up Your Ears” — that last word an anagram for “arse” — is getting a 30th anniversary re-release in a restored edition. The weeklong run provides a rare opportunity to see this biopic of the late gay playwright Joe Orton on the big screen. The film […]