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A Letter to Momo

Even scenes that work, such as a climax on a rain-soaked bridge, feel like they could have been trimmed by a few hand-drawn frames. Maybe…

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Cannibal

Visually striking and confident but frustratingly hollow in terms of character and narrative.

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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…

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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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Politics, celebs and movie critics

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"You should learn to keep your opinions OUT of your reviews!" Every critic I know has received at least one letter like that from an indignant reader. Of course, it's an absurd proposition; critics are paid to express their opinions, and the good ones (who exercise what is known across all disciplines as "critical thinking") are also able to cite examples and employ sound reasoning to build an argument, showing you how and why they reached their verdict.

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The critics were horrified!!!! 4 undervalued scary movies on DVD

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You might say horror movies are the mutant black sheep of the cinema. Some film devotees deem them too ungainly and disreputable to be taken seriously, as if they were deformed, illegitimate stepchildren who should be quietly locked up in the attic and not talked about. And yet... and yet... I suppose you can dislike (if not quite dismiss) entire sub-genres -- Hollywood musicals, maybe, or biblical epics -- but I don't see how you can seriously call yourself a film lover if you don't have some appreciation for horror movies. After all, they are so near the core appeal of the medium: Was there ever a genre better suited for shadowplay, unspooling in the dark before the collective (un-)consciousness of a crowd of spectators?

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FahrenHYPE 9/11: Morris vs. Moore

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Interviewees: Dick Morris, Ron Silver, Ann Coulter, David Frum, Ed Koch, Frank Gaffney, Steve Emerson, Peter King, Zell Miller, Dave Kopel, David Hardy, Jason Clarke, Bill Sammon.

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Vertigo

(NOTE: Although the following only hints at the twists and turns of Vertigo, if you’ve never seen the movie -- well, you’re in for a hell of a treat, and you might want to put off reading this until after you’ve taken the plunge.)

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Sansho the Bailiff

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"Sansho The Bailiff" (aka "Sansho Dayu") traces an epic journey-over land and sea, through space and time. Actually, in "Sansho"'s case, several quests are intertwined, and each rhymes off the others to create a harmonic wholeness that is Kenji Mizoguchi's hallmark as a director. The quest of a brother and sister for their mother; of a slave for freedom; of a boy for this father and the principles for which his father stood (or of a boy to become the man his father became); and the quest of a stream for the sea-all are equally significant journeys for Mizoguchi.

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