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Grace Jones Revealed

Grace Jones Revealed

BY GARY M. KRAMER | How does anyone approach the inimitable, indomitable Grace Jones? The singer/ actress/ model turns 70 this year and still has impeccably sculpted legs and cheekbones, a distinctive, throaty voice, her androgynous appearance, and an outré sense of fashion. She is utterly unconventional and totally alluring. In a remarkable documentary, “Grace Jones: […]

Adrift in the Colonies

Adrift in the Colonies

BY STEVE ERICKSON | Two things describe Argentine director Lucrecia Martel’s characters: they’re never really alone and the help others offer them is rarely truly benign. Her debut, “La Ciénaga,” showed an extended family going to seed and placing themselves unknowingly in danger over the course of a humid summer. It borrowed from Renoir and Altman […]

Young Blood and a Wide Net

Young Blood and a Wide Net

BY STEVE ERICKSON | The multi-national co-production credits for films in this year’s “New Directors/ New Films” series say a lot about its reach: Sri Lanka/ United Kingdom/ USA, Iran/ Canada/ Qatar, Dominican Republic/ Brazil/ Argentina. In the five years since long-time Film Society of Lincoln Center programmer Richard Peña quit that organization, the New York […]

Latin American Cinema’s Frontier

Latin American Cinema’s Frontier

BY STEVE ERICKSON | “Neighboring Scenes” ends on the day the 2018 Oscars take place, when the Chilean transgender melodrama “A Fantastic Woman,” which unfortunately turns its heroine’s grief into a voyeuristic wallow, and Mexican-born director Guillermo del Toro’s excellent “The Shape of Water” might take home prizes. In fact, “A Fantastic Woman” is playing alongside […]

Intimate Look at AIDS’ Toll on an LA Couple

Intimate Look at AIDS’ Toll on an LA Couple

BY GARY M. KRAMER | The “Film Comment Selects” series at the Film Society of Lincoln Center is having a 25th anniversary screening of “Silverlake Life: The View from Here” on February 25 at 4:30 pm. This powerful documentary, co-directed by Tom Joslin and Peter Friedman, was filmed in 1990, but released in 1993. It candidly presents […]

A Finn Has the Immigrant Speak

A Finn Has the Immigrant Speak

BY STEVE ERICKSON | It’s often proclaimed today that every minority group should be the first in line to make films about themselves — and straight, white, Christian, cisgender men should be the last to make films about people other than themselves. There’s some justification for this perspective that goes beyond simply the historical entitlement […]

Queer Debuts Shine at New Directors/ New Films

Queer Debuts Shine at New Directors/ New Films

BY GARY M. KRAMER | Two queer debut features at this year’s New Directors/ New Films festival showcase exciting new talents in world cinema. From South Africa comes gay director/ co-writer John Trengove’s remarkable feature debut, “The Wound” (Mar. 25, 1:30 p.m., MoMA Titus 2; Mar. 26, 9:30 p.m., Walter Reade Theater, Lincoln Center). The film […]

A Stale Immigrant Narrative

A Stale Immigrant Narrative

BY STEVE ERICKSON | In the “Musings” blog, critic Ryan Wu recently pondered why there have been so many films about the white immigrant experience and so few about Latino or Asian immigrants. He came to the conclusion that a film like “The Namesake” is expected to speak for all Asian immigrants, while “The Immigrant,” despite […]

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 […]

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 […]

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