Jeonju 2015 Review: UNWANTED BROTHER Puts Onus On Characters In Familiar Setting

After nearly a decade away from the director's chair, Shim Kwang-jin returns with an unhurried take on a common tale of a lowlife manipulating those around him to pay a debt. Propped up by a few fresh spins on the... More »
By Pierce Conran   
  

Review: WHEN MARNIE WAS THERE, A Melancholy Animated Mystery

Studio Ghibli and its catalogue of extraordinary animated films has been built on the back of two men: the creator of its most beloved characters and star of the studio, Miyazaki Hayao and the often over-looked, but no less talented,... More »
  

Cannes 2015 Review: Wrestling With THE ASSASSIN's Beautiful Nothing

The first thing that strikes you in The Assassin is the quiet. Hou Hsiao-Hsien's ruminative tone-poem, about a Tang Dynasty sell-sword tasked with killing kin, is a remarkably hushed affair. Be it dialogue, sound-effects or music, at no point does... More »
By Ben Croll   
  

Cannes 2015 Review: MOUNTAINS MAY DEPART Displays Creative Artistry But Flawed Vision

Director Jia Zhang-ke is a big fan of segmented narratives. His last film, A Touch of Sin, was an anthology of sorts tackling different stories surrounding the larger topic of the the modernization of Chinese culture. In his latest film,... More »
By Ryland Aldrich   
  

Cannes 2015 Review: MADONNA, A Riveting Tale Of Sorrow And Redemption

Following her accomplished sophomore film, the absorbing high school revenge tale Pluto (2012), Shin Su-won returns in glorious fashion with the searing Madonna. Meticulous, layered and yet seemingly effortless, this rewarding tale of mingled sorrow and redemption should go a... More »
By Pierce Conran   
  

Cannes 2015 Review: OFFICE Works Up An Intriguing Salaryman Chiller

Life is hard for the average Korean salaryman, and sometimes that engenders a need to blow off a little steam. For many that involves drinking to excess, but for others it can spill over into the homestead. New Korean horror-thriller... More »
By Pierce Conran   
  

Review: POUND OF FLESH Is Soft In All The Wrong Places

Jean-Claude Van Damme continues to explore and embrace his darker side in this modest Asian action thriller, as a kidnap & rescue specialist who falls foul of organ traffickers in the Philippines. Sadly, budgetary constraints and a lack of interesting... More »
By James Marsh   
  

Cannes 2015 Review: COIN LOCKER GIRL Offers New Perspectives On Standard Thrills

Against a parking lot bursting with saturated colors, a person lies on the ground, at the mercy of another standing above them who wields a sashimi knife still dripping red from its last kill. Dark, bloody and stylish, this could... More »
By Pierce Conran   
  

Review: BOMBAY VELVET Takes A Gorgeous Look At Jazz Age Hoodlums

If there's anything that Bombay Velvet director Anurag Kashyap has taught us over his last couple of films, it's that he knows how to stage a rousing action sequence. Not only did he create the greatest gangster film of the... More »
By J Hurtado   
  

Cannes 2015 Review: THE SHAMELESS Delivers Hardboiled Melodrama With Top Drawer Performances

"Learn the rules like a pro, so you can break them like an artist." -Pablo Picasso Today's Korea, whether looking at its entertainment, fashion or culinary scenes, is a society awash with fusion. Nowhere is this more true than in... More »
By Pierce Conran   
  

Jeonju 2015 Review: ISLAND, An Elegiac Arthouse Mystery

A man travels to Jeju Island, planning to kill himself in his grandparents' abandoned home, in the most intriguing Korean film to grace the Jeonju International Film Festival this year. A lushly filmed and thoroughly engrossing mystery channeling local family... More »
By Pierce Conran   
  

Indian Film Festival Los Angeles 2015 Review: DHANAK Will Open Your Eyes To The Power Of Hope

In Nagesh Kukunoor's Dhanak, a young boy and his slightly older sister trek hundreds of miles across the desert of Rajasthan in India in search of a cure to the boy's blindness. The trek is long, and not without its... More »
By J Hurtado   
  

LA Asian 2015 Review: THE CHINESE MAYOR Manages To Be Portrait And Landscape

The documentary scene in China is difficult to approach, especially when so many of the works are strictly forbidden to be shown there. With so many independent film festivals being banned and even raided by Chinese government officials, it's truly... More »
  

Udine 2015 Review: THE END OF THE WORLD AND THE CAT'S DISAPPEARANCE, A Quirky Little Sci-Fi Film

Takeuchi Michihiro's The End of the World and the Cat's Disappearance, a zany, modestly packaged apocalyptic sci-fi film revolving around Itsuko (Izukoneko aka Mari), a vlogger-cum-J-pop-idol who attempts to singlehandedly save the world from a gigantic meteor, but ends up... More »
By Patryk Czekaj   
  

Udine 2015 Review: FORGET ME NOT, A Touching Mixture Of Fantasy, Mystery, And Teen Romance

One of the most affecting and enigmatic teen-targeted Japanese films of the last few years, Horie Kei's Forget Me Not (not to be mistaken with Hirayama Hideyuki's 2010 drama that bears the same English title) defies easy categorization, veering confidently... More »
By Patryk Czekaj   
  

Udine 2015 Review: PORT OF CALL Proves Philip Yung's Most Ambitious And Polished Film To Date

A decidedly bleak yet surprisingly meditative exploration of the lower depths of contemporary Hong Kong, Philip Yung's Port of Call clearly articulates its genre-bending aspirations and effectively taps into the generational anxieties of youth today. Based on a case that... More »
By Patryk Czekaj   
  

Review: A FOOL, A Stark Reminder That In China Nice Guys Finish Last

Based on Hu Xuewen's novel Running Moonlight, actor Chen Jianbin's directorial debut is a harsh reminder of humanity's predatory nature, as an honest farmer's efforts to help a young homeless man set of a chain of calamitous events.Chen Jianbin was... More »
By James Marsh   
  

Udine 2015 Review: Political Thriller HELIOS Aims High But Misfires

Following Cold War, an interesting and surprisingly bureaucratic action film, Sunny Luk and Longman Leung strive for bigger and louder with Helios, an overambitious and convoluted thriller that had its international premiere at the 17th Udine Far East Film Festival.... More »
  

Udine 2015 Review: War Drama DRAGON BLADE Might Be The New UNESCO Representative

The Udine Far East Film Festival (FEFF) opened its 17th edition with a bang. Not only did the Italian festival hold the world premiere of the international cut of Dragon Blade, it also managed to have Jackie Chan himself introducing... More »
  

Udine 2015 Review: THE WICKED, An Effectively Thrilling Exercise In Low-Budget Filmmaking

Bolstered and braced by a wonderfully sinister performance from the relatively unknown young South Korean actress Park Ju-hui, Yoo Young-sun's The Wicked is a slow-paced but nicely modulated and effectively gripping exercise in low-budget indie filmmaking. Shot in a mere... More »
By Patryk Czekaj   
  
 
  Next »
Page 1 of 141