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Trade and Tradition

Arts

Trade and Tradition

The gangster film is based in a mythology that has proved remarkably malleable across history. If it started in the US, filmmakers in France, Italy, Japan, South Korea, and Hong Kong (just to begin with) have put their own stamp on it. An international conversation has always taken place through the genre, reflecting the history and values of each nation that has adopted it. Comments (1)
Lean into the offbeat rhythms of out gay writer/ director Christophe Honoré’s sophisticated new film “Sorry Angel” and absorb all its romantic splendor. This intimate, affecting drama, set in 1993, alternates between Jacques (Pierre Deladonchamps), an HIV-positive writer in Paris, and Arthur (Vincent Lacoste), a Breton. Comment
Arts

Fraught Thriller Too Far Afield

Arts

Fraught Thriller Too Far Afield

The concept of the “elevated genre film” has recently become fashionable. Critic Bilge Ebiri wrote an essay about it for Vulture last year, which offered a provisional definition: “The demands of genre — the jump scares, the spectacle, the pulse-pounding suspense, etc. — become secondary to the movies’ emotional undercurrents and the filmmakers’ aesthetic and thematic obsessions.” Comment
Arts

Playing With Passions, Not Fire

Arts

Playing With Passions, Not Fire

“The Gospel of Eureka” is out gay filmmakers Michael Palmieri and Donal Mosher’s engaging and even-handed documentary about Eureka Springs, Arkansas, which narrator Mx. Justin Vivian Bond describes as, “a place where stories come to life.” Comment
Arts

Dreams and Their Demise

Arts

Dreams and Their Demise

In “The Wild Pear Tree,” Turkish director Nuri Bilge Ceylan creates his own time and space to relate a period in the life of Sinan (Dogu Demirkol), a young man who aspires to be a novelist. […] Comment
On the heels of high visibility LGBTQ representation at the Golden Globes, queer actors, characters, and filmmakers made another splash in the Academy Award nominations on Tuesday. Comments (1)
Jean-Luc Godard’s “The Image Book” is a demonstration of thinking through and about images and sounds that makes most other films now playing New York look awfully basic. A much condensed follow-up to Godard’s four-hour “Histoire(s) du Cinéma,” it shows the uselessness of labels like “documentary,” “avant-garde film,” and “essay-film” or even “post-cinema,” when faced with something that spans all four. Comment
Doubtless you’ve been reading a lot about Kevin Spacey lately. The chickens — or in this case chickenhawks — have come home to roost for the two-time Academy Award-winning actor whose penchant for “barely legal” youths has been well-known for decades and completely tolerated by an entertainment industry that will stand for anything insofar as the person responsible has “market value.” Comments (6)
Arts

The Oppression Within

Arts

The Oppression Within

“The Heiresses,” Paraguay’s official Oscar submission, is a subtle and moving character study about Chela (Ana Brun), whose lover, Chiquita (Margarita Irun), is sent to prison for bank fraud. Alone and adrift, Chela drives her neighbor Pituca (María Martins) around to card games. Eventually, she meets Angy (Ana Ivanova), a beautiful young woman who also employs Chela’s taxi service. Comments (1)
Arts

Liberating the Body

Arts

Liberating the Body

When Romanian director Adina Pintilie’s “Touch Me Not” won the top prize at the 2018 Berlin Film Festival, it wasn’t a typical consensus favorite. The scenes at a BDSM club have made some spectators and critics uneasy. But “Touch Me Not” isn’t softcore porn; if anything, it’s painfully earnest. Pintilie’s film is a hybrid of fiction and documentary elements whose premise evokes Steven Soderbergh’s “sex, lies and videotape.” Pinitilie depicts herself on a quest to show subjects searching for intimacy and trying to find sex and love in a world with very narrow beauty standards. Comment

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