Why I Love… #110: Clockers

Year: 1995 Director: Spike Lee Stars: Mekhi Phifer, Isaiah Washington, Harvey Keitel Last year Spike Lee's most flammable joint, Do The Right Thing, got itself a re-release and a Criterion Collection special edition. A belated victory lap for one of the most bold and distinctive American films of the 1980s. Do The Right Thing tends to be … Continue reading Why I Love… #110: Clockers

Why I Love… #109: Toys Are Not For Children

Year: 1972 Director: Stanley H Brassloff Stars: Marcia Forbes, Evelyn Kingsley, Harlan Cary Poe The first word we hear in Toys Are Not For Children is a husky, lustrously whispered "Daddy". Jamie (Marcia Forbes) is lying naked on her bed with a large toy soldier. She's in the throws of a sexual fantasy, and the … Continue reading Why I Love… #109: Toys Are Not For Children

Why I Love… #108: The Last Movie

Year: 1971 Director: Dennis Hopper Stars: Dennis Hopper, Stella Garcia, Samuel Fuller The Last Movie is a hard movie to love, and maybe a harder one to make a case for. It's a deeply broken film; as fragmented as its creator was at the time. The tales of its making are the stuff of cinematic … Continue reading Why I Love… #108: The Last Movie

Why I Love… #107: Talk To Her

Year: 2002 Director: Pedro Almodóvar Stars: Javier Cámara, Dario Grandinetti, Leonor Watling Echoes and opposites permeate all facets of Talk To Her, Pedro Almodóvar's slyly coiled melodrama, his first film following the worldwide embrace of All About My Mother. The opening shot of the film sees two dancers on stage; the one in the background an echo of … Continue reading Why I Love… #107: Talk To Her

Why I Love… #106: The Swinging Cheerleaders

Year: 1974 Director: Jack Hill Stars: Jo Johnston, Rainbeaux Smith, Rosanne Keaton Is there such a thing as an elevated exploitation film? In the documentary on the Filipino B-movie boom Machete Maidens Unleashed, cult director John Landis laughs off the notion, rejecting the idea that filmmakers who indulge in exploitation pictures have any loftier intentions … Continue reading Why I Love… #106: The Swinging Cheerleaders

Why I Love… #105: Come Back To The 5 And Dime, Jimmy Dean, Jimmy Dean

Year: 1982 Director: Robert Altman Stars: Karen Black, Cher, Sandy Dennis The weather is scorching. Being a hopeless cinephile, a heatwave first and foremost gets me thinking about 'hot' films. The Texas Chain Saw Massacre. Wake In Fright. Body Heat etc. Movies defined by sweltering climates, in which the air seems sticky and the actors perspire for our … Continue reading Why I Love… #105: Come Back To The 5 And Dime, Jimmy Dean, Jimmy Dean

Why I Love… #104: Fixed Bayonets!

Year: 1951 Director: Samuel Fuller Stars: Richard Basehart, Gene Evans, Michael O'Shea Having worked his way up the ranks as a versatile screenwriter, Samuel Fuller 'upgraded' to the director's chair and quickly took on the thankless appearance of a 'journeyman' director. This was years before the critical reappraisal that rightly recognised his craft and influence. … Continue reading Why I Love… #104: Fixed Bayonets!

Why I Love… #103: Desert Hearts

Year: 1985 Director: Donna Deitch Stars: Helen Shaver, Patricia Charbonneau, Audra Lindley Gay cinema has become pleasingly normalised in contemporary filmmaking. Indeed, most of the very best modern romance films centre on same-sex couples. Though the movies have opened up, the world still holds its prejudices, and it is perhaps this ongoing idea of the … Continue reading Why I Love… #103: Desert Hearts

Why I Love… #102: The Postman Always Rings Twice

Year: 1946Director: Tay GarnettStars: Lana Turner, John Garfield, Cecil KellawayWhen people are done naming historical figures, corporations or celebrities, the diner is one of the quintessential fixtures of American iconography. Broadly the diner connects to the vast country's optimism and self-perceived innocence.Particularly the imagery strikes a chord with the first half of the twentieth century, … Continue reading Why I Love… #102: The Postman Always Rings Twice

Why I Love… #101: Short Night Of Glass Dolls

Year: 1971 Director: Aldo Lado Stars: Jean Sorel, Barbara Bach, Ingrid Thulin There are better giallo films out there. Purer examples of the genre. But Aldo Lado's Short Night Of Glass Dolls is a devilishly entertaining and under-celebrated example. It's giallo seen through a fun house mirror, contorted into something that might've been just as fitting … Continue reading Why I Love… #101: Short Night Of Glass Dolls

Why I Love… #100: The Furies

Year: 1950 Director: Anthony Mann Stars: Barbara Stanwyck, Walter Huston, Judith Anderson This year I've been fervently trying to even up my experience of the so-called golden age of cinema, in doing so I've made attempts to embrace one of the genres that I have previously spied with dubiousness and suspicion; the western. To the … Continue reading Why I Love… #100: The Furies

Why I Love… #99: Juliet Of The Spirits

Year: 1965 Director: Federico Fellini Stars: Giuletta Masina, Sandra Milo, Mario Pisu Federico Fellini is one of those goliath names in world cinema, so esteemed by critics that their body of work becomes immediately intimidating. Venerated like Bergman. Like Godard. I remember vividly the first Fellini film I saw; La Dolce Vita. A shade too early … Continue reading Why I Love… #99: Juliet Of The Spirits

Why I Love… #98: Cure

Year: 1997 Director: Kiyoshi Kurosawa Stars: Kôji Yakusho, Masato Hagiwara, Tsuyoshi Ujiki  Few films of late have gotten under my skin like Cure. I watched it thanks to the recent Eureka! edition released here in the UK under their Masters of Cinema imprint. Bought-to-see. And it hung around me for the longest time, playing on my mind, … Continue reading Why I Love… #98: Cure

Why I Love… #97: Your Vice Is A Locked Room And Only I Have The Key

Year: 1972 Director: Sergio Martino Stars: Edwige Fenech, Anita Strindberg, Luigi Pistilli In spite of the significant shortcomings of their gender politics, I find myself persistently lured back into the world of early 1970's giallo cinema; that treasure trove of Italian stalk-and-slash movies identified by their black gloved killers, despicable socialites and breathtakingly cinematic original … Continue reading Why I Love… #97: Your Vice Is A Locked Room And Only I Have The Key

Why I Love… #96: The Children’s Hour

Year: 1961 Director: William Wyler Stars: Audrey Hepburn, Shirley MacLaine, James Garner In 1961 William Wyler took a second swing at bringing Lillian Hellman's play, The Children's Hour, to the big screen. The play tells the story of two female teachers who are falsely 'outed' as lesbians by a naughty pupil, and follows the immediate disrepair … Continue reading Why I Love… #96: The Children’s Hour