Review: Vortex

Director: Gaspar Noé Stars: Dario Argento, Françoise Lebrun, Alex Lutz As highlighted by Mark Cousins in his labyrinthine The Story of Film, Michael Haneke's 2000 film Code Unknown is made up of a series of long takes that never touch. Where traditional editing techniques juxtapose scenes directly to engender a sense of natural flow, Haneke divides …

Review: Benediction

Director: Terence Davies Stars: Jack Lowden, Matthew Tennyson, Tom Blyth The musings of WWI poet Siegfried Sassoon seem to have inspired a sense of visual poetry in British stalwart Terence Davies, whose stately biopic turns in some gratifying surprises in it's early sections. Disinclined to present the harrowing warfare of the Somme as anything approaching …

Review: Monstrous

Director: Chris Sivertson Stars: Christina Ricci, Colleen Camp, Santino Barnard Fleeing from an evidently abusive husband with her son Cody (Santino Barnard), pretty-'50s housewife Laura (Christina Ricci) takes up residence in a spacious farmhouse out in the rolling hills of California. While Cody struggles making friends at his new school, Laura starts to feel relatively …

Review: Firestarter (2022)

Director: Keith Thomas Stars: Zac Efron, Gloria Reuben, Ryan Kiera Armstrong Stephen King's Firestarter sits somewhere unassuming toward the bottom of the mid-tier of his work, and the same could be said for it's 1984 adaptation starring a young Drew Barrymore. By this yardstick the call for this remake seems relatively minor, yet here it is. …

Review: Everything Everywhere All At Once

Directors: Daniel Scheinert, Daniel Kwan Stars: Michelle Yeoh, Ke Huy Quan, Jamie Lee Curtis Scheinert and Kwan - collectively 'Daniels' - garnered attention a few years ago with their wantonly strange and anarchic Daniel Radcliffe-is-a-corpse-with-a-boner movie Swiss Army Man; the absurdity of the project gathering the most comment. Still, this oddball calling card showed enough …

Review: Playground

Director: Laura Wandel Stars: Maya Vanderbeque, Günter Duret, Laura Verlinden School years are immensely formative in the development of the individual, and not just for the lessoned learned in the classroom. These monitored spaces are also arenas in which we learn social queues, hierarchies and boundaries. Laura Wandel's intimately-shot Playground intrudes into these spaces with sometimes …

Review: Luzifer

Director: Peter Brunner Stars: Franz Rogowski, Susanne Jensen, Monika Hinterhuber Anyone with a even a cursory eye on European cinema at present will have some understanding of what an incendiary presence Franz Rogowski has become over the past few years, with great work evidenced in collaboration with Christian Petzold (twice now) and Sebastian Meise, among …

Review: Happening

Director: Audrey Diwan Stars: Anamaria Vartolomei, Luàna Bajrami, Fabrizio Rongione  In Audrey Diwan's essential drama Happening (a.k.a. L'Événement), it's protagonist's world is the centre of everything. The fulcrum of every scene. Diwan uses handheld camerawork and deep focus to keep us within the realms of Anne's (Anamaria Vartolomei) persistent mind. Whenever she's at her most …