In 1978, South Korean actor Choi Eun-hee went missing. Her ex-husband, director Shin Sang-ok, made it his mission to find her when he too went missing. Their whereabouts remained elusive for some time, but the answer that eventually came out was stranger than any potential explanation: the two South Korean celebrities had been kidnapped by none other than North Korean dictator Kim Jong-il with the purpose of having them direct films for the people of…
Articles by Shahbaz Khayambashi
The Girl King arrives with a certain amount of baggage due to its connection to a classic of cinematic history.
It is probably inaccurate to call Ben Wheatley’s Free Fire “a comedy of errors” given that term’s context, but perhaps the term “comedy of injuries” could be coined to describe this cross between cruelty and the absurd in a way that only Wheatley can do.
Paterson is a study of ennui in its purest form. Paterson is a love letter to the seemingly inconsequential town of Paterson, New Jersey. Paterson is about Zen and the creation of art. The fact that all of this is contained in a film about the quotidian activities of a man’s life across one week is nothing short of a miracle.
In their essay “Cinema-Ideology-Criticism”, Jean-Luc Comolli and Jean Paul Narboni speak of a category of cinema which is politically progressive in content, but whose politics can be discounted due to the generic and status quo supporting form. This category is exemplified in Nerve, a film which, just like your friend who speaks about how others “don’t understand”, manages to talk for 96 minutes without ever actually saying anything.
Making a mythology for a horror film is a complex concept. Filmmakers have to take into account narrative, visual and paratextual elements in order to create an iconic creature that can stand the test of time. The filmmaker may not realize this, but they are inherently forced into this routine when they make a film which involves the creation of an urban legend.
9 Days with Cambria is sold as an experiment in character development and storytelling. It tells the story of a young woman by the name of Cambria, who was once raped by her boyfriend-at-the-time which led to their breakup and her worsened mental state. In more competent hands, this could have been an inquisitive work, but in the hands of directors Mike Klassen (Abolition) and Jason Armstrong, the final product is at best inconsequential and at…
Based on my moviegoing experience, most romantic comedies, melodramas and other stereotypically feminine genre films are directed by men. Based on this alone, Chevalier is an important film: a study of masculinity through the gaze of a woman filmmaker.
Sometimes, a film may fail at one or two or even five things. A much rarer find is a film that manages to fail at absolutely everything it attempts. The term “attempt” is important, since The Before Time did unintentionally succeed at making me laugh out loud several times – a much higher success rate than many recent comedies.
Jeremy Saulnier, the director of the unusually and undeservedly lauded Blue Ruin, concocts a second feature where hot punk rock meets cold blooded murder.