Inside Llewyn Davis
"Inside Llewyn Davis" is the most satisfyingly diabolical cinematic structure that the Coens have ever contrived, and that's just one reason that I suspect it…
Listen (doo-dah-doo), do you want to know a secret?
I have new reviews of two fine films -- one from Germany and one from Turkey -- in today's Chicago Sun-Times and on RogerEbert.com:
It feels like science fiction -- "Fahrenheit 451" or "THX 1138" or "Brazil," with roots in Kafka and Orwell -- but the chilling and chilly dystopian world of writer-director Florian Henckel's "The Lives of Others" existed. The film, which begins in 1984, is a depiction of historical reality, not a cautionary fiction. It's set in East Germany, the German Democratic Republic, then a Soviet bloc communist-totalitarian state. Think of it as "The Conversation" behind the Iron Curtain.
The air is alive in Turkish director Nuri Bilge Ceylan's "Climates" -- more alive than the characters, who are like inert lumps of rock or sand. But that's the point. In this movie, so finely attuned to frequencies of light and sound, it's the invisible space around the characters that swarms with life and possibility. Their interior lives are muddled, opaque even to themselves, and they can't express anything directly, not even their own anguish and dissatisfaction.
Gerardo Valero sees the potential for a good remake in "Escape from New York."
Erik Childress looks at the first awards of the season and their possible impact on the Oscar race.
The first in a monthly series of video essays about unloved films, Scout Tafoya's video essay is an appreciation of "...
Omer Mozaffar reflects on "12 Years a Slave."