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Film Friday Essay

I Don’t Really Know What I Like: On Eliza Hittman’s “Beach Rats.”

Beach Rats opens with a montage central to the film’s discourse about desire, in this case a desire partially exposed, partially in shadow. The resulting images will be familiar to anyone who was growing up on Facebook between 2009-2012: a guy’s reflection in a mirror, a selfie of the top off and flash on variety. […]

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Film

The Booksellers

Here are two things I know to be true: there aren’t enough documentaries about books; when one can be found, it’s almost always disappointing. Well, sigh. D.W. Young’s film, about New York’s rare book dealer and collector scene, promises to be a quaint, easy-going glance in at the lives of those who have made collecting […]

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Film

New-to-me Favourites: June 2020

Hyenas (Djibril Diop Mambéty, 1992) The Long Farewell (Kira Muratova, 1971) I Don’t Want to Sleep Alone / Stray Dogs / Journey to the West (Tsai Ming-liang, 2007/2013/2014) The Love Eterne (Li Han-hsiang, 1963) Places in Cities (Angela Schanelec, 1998) Café Lumière / Flight of the Red Balloon (Hou Hsiao-hsien, 2003/2007) Let the Fire Burn (Jason Osder, 2013) Losing Ground (Kathleen Collins, […]

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Film

Streaming Recommendations: June 2020

MUBI: —Marseille: A confession: I don’t find the films of Angela Schanelec cold. On occasion I find them alienating, or primarily works to comprehend rather than feel, because they attain near-Straub/Huillet levels of rigour and precision in matters profilmic and narrative, actorly and sonic. But why then did I cry so persistently during the Joni […]

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Film

New-to-me favourites: May 2020

The More the Merrier (George Stevens, 1943) My Neighbours the Yamadas (Isao Takahata, 1999) All is Forgiven (Mia Hansen-Løve, 2007) The Hole (Tsai Ming-liang, 1998) Centre Stage (Stanley Kwan, 1992) Toute une nuit (Chantal Akerman, 1982) Like Grains of Sand (Ryosuke Hashiguchi, 1995) Ornamental Hairpin (Hiroshi Shimizu,1941)

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Film

Streaming Recommendations: May 2020

MUBI: —Let the Sunshine In: I have watched this movie (minor Denis, I’m told) a silly number of times. On each new occasion it grows: it becomes more accommodating, funnier, sadder. Binoche’s Isabelle, an artist, suffering through interminable dates with a panoply of men who are either wrong from the start or time their arrivals […]

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Film

New-to-me Favourites: April 2020

Comrades: Almost a Love Story (Peter Chan, 1996) Tea and Sympathy (Vincente Minnelli, 1956) The Masseurs and a Woman (Hiroshi Shimizu, 1938) Le Plaisir (Max Ophuls, 1952) Love Letter (Kinuyo Tanaka, 1953) A Borrowed Life (Wu Nien-jen, 1994) A Confucian Confusion (Edward Yang, 1994) Night Moves (Kelly Reichardt, 2013) Passing Fancy (Yasujiro Ozu, 1933) Onibaba (Kaneto Shindo, 1964)  

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Film

Streaming Recommendations: April 2020

MUBI: —Sisters: There’s a lot of egregious shit written about Brian De Palma ‘elevating’ the genres he works in, rather than him being, as is truthful, an adept operator within said genres, while doing his usual routine of aping conceits from Hitchcock films—here, a heady mixture of Psycho, Rear Window, and Rope—through his own experience. […]

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Film

New-to-me Favourites: March 2020

Millennium Actress (Satoshi Kon, 2001) Olivia (Jacqueline Audry, 1951) The Dreamed Path (Angela Schanelec, 2016) Stranger by the Lake (Alain Guiraudie, 2013) Teorema (Pier Paolo Pasolini, 1968) Army of Shadows (Jean-Pierre Melville, 1969) Sense and Sensibility (Ang Lee, 1995) The Story of the Last Chrysanthemum (Kenji Mizoguchi, 1939) Song of the Exile (Ann Hui, 1990)

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Film

Streaming Recommendations: March 2020

MUBI: —Lourdes: As mentioned when I recommended Amour Fou last month, I don’t like Lourdes particularly: but it’s still worth it for the shy restraint of Sylvie Testud’s performance. —Wild Goose Lake: The improbably sexy Hu Ge is going to star in Wong Kar-wai’s next film, Blossoms, and owing to a bit of business he does here bandaging up a wound, […]