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Freeheld stumbles over too many hurdles to recommend it. The film’s heart is in the right place, but its focus is not.



Cassel’s latest movie that smartly keeps his innate menace on a slow, low simmer, isn’t nearly as convincing or compelling as its star.

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Ballad of Narayama

"The Ballad of Narayama" is a Japanese film of great beauty and elegant artifice, telling a story of startling cruelty. What a space it opens…


Monsieur Hire

Patrice Leconte's "Monsieur Hire" is a tragedy about loneliness and erotomania, told about two solitary people who have nothing else in common. It involves a…

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Buñuelathon '07!


A dream of dying: "Los Olvidados."

Flickhead is hosting a Buñuel blog-a-thon this week, with postings on famous and obscure Buñuelian objects of desire. From the intro:

Few filmmakers have held my attention, respect and admiration for as long or as deeply as Luis Buñuel. For years I’ve thought of him as my ‘favorite’ director, mostly due to a personal connection I feel with his attitudes, humor and outlook. A surrealist, a wandering spirit, a cynic, a recovering Catholic…Buñuel used the cinema to explore these areas and took special delight in society’s inexorable draw to the seven deadly sins—especially pride, lust and greed. Among the very few masters capable of channeling elevated social and cultural criticisms into popular cinema, he took aim at the whole of humanity, recognizing the folly of our desires.

My contributions are previous posts about the relationships between Jonathan Glazer's "Birth" (2004) and "Un Chien Andalou" ("'Birth' of a Buñuelian notion") and Buñuel's autobiography, "My Last Sigh."

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