SXSW 2015 Review: WESTERN, A New American Marvel

The Ross Brothers' 2012 film Tchoupitoulas showcased Bill and Turner's proclivity for visually arresting imagery, compelling yet dreamlike narrative flow, and a keen eye for the undercurrents that run below the more obvious stories that have flooded from post-Katrina... More »
By Jason Gorber   
  

Sundance 2015 Review: CALL ME LUCKY, Bobcat Goldthwait Documents His Mentor

I admit that when I first saw Bobcat Goldthwait on screen sometime in the 1980s, he of the Grover voice making me laugh in the second Police Academy movie, it never occurred to me that he'd be helming one... More »
By Jason Gorber   
  

Sundance 2015 Review: WHAT HAPPENED, MISS SIMONE?

She approaches the piano with a regality that's startling, her eyes piercing the crowd and her shoulders locked in an almost feline repose. She places a hand on the grand piano sat in front of her and looks out,... More »
By Jason Gorber   
  

Sundance 2015 Review: THE VISIT, A Speculative Documentary

So, the aliens have landed. Well, not really. But let's for a moment say they have. E.T.s are in town, and they're ready to talk. To whom do they converse? Who do we, collectively, send out to initiate the... More »
By Jason Gorber   
  

Sundance 2015 Review: SLOW WEST, A Deeply-Reflective Action Movie

The fact that the Western is a troubled genre is hardly news. It's gone from the most prevalent narrative film style to a far more niche set of works. Some neo-Westerns, like Star Wars or Serenity, go operatic, taking... More »
By Jason Gorber   
  

Sundance 2015 Review: PEOPLE, PLACES, THINGS, Perfectly Pleasant

People, Places, Things - a dry, almost forgettable title that refers to a film much better than those adjectives strung together by commas. It's a quotidian moniker for a film that's kind of exceptional, celebrated not only because of... More »
By Jason Gorber   
  

Sundance 2015 Review: The Holy Fools Are DRUNK, STONED, BRILLIANT, DEAD

To those not fortunate enough to have come of age in the 60s heyday of revolutionary freethinking, it may come as a surprise to learn that the story of National Lampoon, in many ways, is the story of the birth... More »
By Zach Gayne   
  

Sundance 2015 Review: HOMESICK Charts A Tender Symmetry Of Yearning

Norwegian filmmaker Anne Sewitsky made waves at Sundance in 2011 when her feature debut Happy Happy won the Grand Jury World Dramatic Prize. Sewitsky returned to the festival this year with her third feature, Homesick, a deconstructionist family drama which... More »
By Ben Umstead   
  

Sundance 2015 Review: Invaluable Happenings From STATION TO STATION

It consists of countless bands, playing on and off a polychromatic train as it passes through innumerable cities. But Station To Station is no rockumentary. That it often features brilliant bands playing live on a train will perhaps evoke, for some, the choo... More »
By Zach Gayne   
  

Sundance 2015 Review: THINGS OF THE AIMLESS WANDERER, A World-Class Stunner

To be absolutely mesmerized by a film, I mean totally transfixed, is a rare happening in cinema, but should be the norm, right? Rwandan director Kivu Ruhorahoza's Things Of The Aimless Wanderer is just such a film. Spectacular and ambitious... More »
By Ben Umstead   
  

Sundance 2015 Review: CARTEL LAND Documents A Moral Quagmire

An astonishing journalistic achievement, Cartel Land captures in unprecedented ways the moral quagmire that inexorably links the consumers of drugs in the U.S. with the suppliers south of the border. What sets this film apart is the unique way... More »
By Jason Gorber   
  

Sundance 2015 Review: ME AND EARL AND THE DYING GIRL, More Clever Than You Think

The title for Me and Earl and the Dying Girl is kind of appalling, a sing-song rhyming cadence that reminds of Lobo's buttery 1971 pop hit "Me And You and a Dog Named Boo". Its premise -- a young... More »
By Jason Gorber   
  

Sundance 2015 Review: ENTERTAINMENT, Seeking The Legendary Laugh To Masterful Effect

Many would say there are two distinct poles to cinema-going. There are those times when you want something warm and familiar. It's comfort food you can share with your family. Not too sweet or sour, not too heavy. And then... More »
By Ben Umstead   
  

Sundance 2015 Review: THE BRONZE Is Comedy Gold

This summer is sure to produce an onslaught of mindless trash disguised as comedy. Adam Sandler will make more cool millions, Paul Blart will potentially earn more undeserved revenue, and comedic celebrities who have shone in better films will be... More »
By Zach Gayne   
  

Sundance 2015 Review: THE OVERNIGHT Goes There

It's so incredibly tempting to reveal all the bizarre places Patrick Brice's new film, The Overnight, takes its audiences, who, if they're anything like this viewer, will likely watch the film with mouths gleefully agape.The film opens in the bedroom... More »
By Zach Gayne   
  

Sundance 2015 Review: H. Explores The Strange Dissonance Of Coupling

There's something strange in the waters of Troy, New York. Something life-changing in the skies. Some of us can see it, some of us can hear it. Some of us will wander into the woods to find it, leaving our... More »
By Ben Umstead   
  

Sundance 2015 Review: HELLIONS, A Monstrous Misstep

Hellions, Journeyman director Bruce McDonald's first foray into horror since 2008's slow-cooker Pontypool, is a maelstorm of horror traditions and tropes, good and bad alike. While the film is never boring for its constant barrage of evocative imagery, cacophonous score... More »
By Ben Umstead   
  

Sundance 2015 Review: LAST DAYS IN THE DESERT And The Closeness Of The Great Divide

Director Rodrigo García's minimalist Christ-centered parable on fathers and sons pivots the holy man as everyman and observer. It's an approach that feels of merit: one that ultimately doesn't see earth-bound humanity and a more intangible sense of spirituality as... More »
By Ben Umstead   
  

Sundance 2015 Review: THE END OF THE TOUR Beautifully Explores Our Creative Intellects

Can you call it a bromance if there is no comedic intent? If not, then what's the best way to label a burgeoning platonic relationship between two men connecting over previously unexplored similarities and interests? Maybe it's just friendship, relationship,... More »
By Ryland Aldrich   
  

Sundance 2015 Review: KURT COBAIN: MONTAGE OF HECK, The Man Behind The Music And The Mania

I'll admit upfront I'm no fan of either Kurt Cobain or the music he made with Nirvana. The band hit just at that age when I was finding out for the first time about albums like The Who's Quadropenia or... More »
By Jason Gorber   
  
 
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