Indie Reviews - Genre, Cult, Unique

Review: Pawan Kumar's U TURN Will Keep You Guessing Until The Last Minute

Indian director Pawan Kumar is one of the most interesting and uncomprimising talents in South Asia today. His last film, Lucia, was the first crowd funded feature to appear from India and its trippy story about the effects of a... More »
By J Hurtado   
  

Review: Punk Is Alive In THE DAMNED: DON'T YOU WISH THAT WE WERE DEAD

Near the ending of Wes Orshoski’s new documentary The Damned: Don’t You Wish That We Were Dead, guitarist and former bassist Captain Sensible - the wildest/funniest founding member of punk pioneers The Damned -, says that in the late seventies,... More »
  

Review: A BIGGER SPLASH Makes A Brazen Dive

"...We got a little lost." Yes, I'll say you did. The former pronouncement comes as two of the four main characters of A Bigger Splash arrive hours late to dinner after an, ahem, exploratory dalliance amid the exotic nearby landscape.... More »
By Jim Tudor   
  

Cannes 2016 Review: HELL OR HIGH WATER Does Outlaw Justice Darn Right

Bank robbers. Texas Rangers. A sun-drenched landscape. Oil derricks. Tumbleweeds. A loose cannon ex-con. A brother just trying to do the right thing. An aging lawman on the doorstep of retirement. Throw it all in a blender and you're bound... More »
By Ryland Aldrich   
  

NY Indian Film Fest 2016 Review: KHOYA, A Drama About Displacement, Loss, And The Dangerous Nature Of Truth

Being a film writer has its ups and downs. We are constantly inundated by wannabe filmmakers looking to make their mark on the world. Like any other aspirational pursuit, the vast majority of the output from these cold calls is... More »
By J Hurtado   
  

NY Indian Film Fest 2016 Review: CRIME IS PUNISHMENT, The Tamil New Wave Rolls On

M. Manikandan is one of a small group of filmmakers from Tamil Nadu who are a hair's breath away from making a huge international splash. Two years ago his film Kaaka Muttai (The Crow's Egg) wowed Toronto IFF audiences with... More »
By J Hurtado   
  

Cannes 2016 Review: CLOSE ENCOUNTERS WITH VILMOS ZSIGMOND, A Sparkling Tribute

From the opening shot where the subject is adjusting the lighting, tweaking the seating height, futzing with back illumination and checking the camera's gamma, you know that Close Encounters With Vilmos Zsigmond is not an everyday documentary. But Vilmos... More »
By Jason Gorber   
  

Tribeca 2016 Review: ALWAYS SHINE, In Which The Hollywood Dream Factory Becomes A Nightmare

Director Sophia Takal more than fulfills the considerable promise of her debut Green with her second feature, a film that often looks, acts and feels like a thriller/horror flick, but at its heart is a dramatic treatise on the tyranny... More »
  

Review: THE DARKNESS Inhabits The Creepy Edge Of Suburbia

For his latest adventure in suspense, director Greg McLean reins in the blood and guts to focus on a family under attack by forces both interior and exterior. McLean established his international reputation with the gruesome Wolf Creek more than... More »
By Peter Martin   
  

Review: FYNBOS, Brilliantly Anti-Cathartic Cinema

A young white woman in high heels walks down a street in a black working-class neighborhood. Though clearly on edge, she walks with a purpose. She pauses at a row of trash cans. Clothes billow in the wind, threaded on... More »
By Ben Umstead   
  

NY Indian Film Fest 2016: SAHEB BIBI GOLAAM, A Bengali Triptych Thriller

A hitman, a hooker, and a hustler all with hearts of gold: these are the three main characters in Pratim D. Gupta's latest thriller, Saheb Bibi Golaam (The Drifters). Except, these three aren't exactly virtuous, they have their pecadillos and... More »
By J Hurtado   
  

Review: I AM THALENTE Skates With Soul

We all know the sound. That clack-scrape-whoosh of a skateboard on the sidewalk. For many of us it is as close to the sport as we get. When we hear that sound most of us move out of the way... More »
By Ben Umstead   
  

Review: LAST DAYS IN THE DESERT, A Wandering Christ Parable

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   
  

Tribeca 2016 Review: ALWAYS SHINE, In Which the Hollywood Dream Factory Becomes A Nightmare

Director Sophia Takal more than fulfills the considerable promise of her debut Green with her second feature, a film that often looks, acts and feels like a thriller/horror flick, but at its heart is a dramatic treatise on the tyranny... More »
  

NY Indian Film Fest 2016 Review: PARCHED Pleads For Peace And Equality In The Face Of Violence

It is dangerous to be a woman in India these days. While I sincerely hate to paint an entire country with such broad strokes, this is the story I'm told over and over again by the news of deadly gang... More »
By J Hurtado   
  

NY Indian Film Fest 2016 Review: KOTHANODI, A Quartet Of Dark Fables From The Rivers Of Assam

Far from the hustle and bustle of India's big film industries in Mumbai, Chennai, and Hyderabad is the western state of Assam. This state borders China to the north, and stretches almost all the way to Myanmar in the west.... More »
By J Hurtado   
  

Review: HERE ALONE, Having Loved And Lost In Time Of The Apocalypse

Two of the most mis-quoted lines in Lord Tennyson’s poem ‘In Memoriam’ are… 'Tis better to have loved and lost Than never to have loved at all. These lines are often taken out of their context (the author’s mourning the... More »
By Andrew Mack   
  

Review: ELSTREE 1976 Presents The Human Side Behind A Space Opera

Hundreds of actors work on a film production but only a phenomenon as huge and unique as Star Wars really make fans interested in basically every single one of them, including the extras and the masked performers. This real fascination... More »
  

Review: BELLADONNA OF SADNESS, A Spellbinding Work Of Carnal Beauty

Yamamoto Eiichi's long forgotten work of erotic fantasy, 1973's Belladonna of Sadness, is an unforgettable cinematic experience that has no equal, even all these years later. This project, the last film in a trilogy produced by manga legend Tezuka Osamu... More »
By Charlie Hobbs   
  

Hot Docs 2016 Review: HOW TO BUILD A TIME MACHINE Beautifully Mixes Craft And Emotion

The famous Serenity Prayer of american theologian Reinhold Niebuhr is as follows:  "God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference." Jay... More »
By Kurt Halfyard   
  
 
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