Family history is a dependable theme for filmmakers to explore. The Last Black Man in San Francisco, however, is more about what it means to preserve that lineage. In their breakout feature film debut, filmmaker Joe Talbot and actor Jimmie Fails unpack an observational story that’s related to that, based on elements of Fails’ real-life experiences.
By: Jolie Featherstone “I forgot I was making a horror movie.”
By: Jessica Goddard Mid90s is a coming-of-age period piece, chronicling how a mild 13-year-old boy finds acceptance and belonging with a reckless crowd of skateboarders. Our pint-sized protagonist, Stevie (Sunny Suljic), perfectly captures the in-the-middleness suggested by the title – we can’t help but see a child when he’s next to his older (taller) friends, but the mischief he gets up to makes him feel much more adult than we’re comfortable with.
By: Trevor Chartrand Apatow-comedy veteran Jonah Hill has diversified his career path considerably in recent years, taking on darker and more intense roles. Now he’s taken another step into new territory, this time helming a film from behind the camera: Mid90s is Hill’s directorial debut, and it’s chock-full of surprises.
By: Nick van Dinther It’s so difficult to pull off a horror film that’s truly frightening. Many movies rely on jump scares or violent deaths, but the results rarely stick with you after the fact. It’s a genre that’s incredibly divisive between both fans and critics, and fails more often than it succeeds for both. A filmmaker needs to bring something genuinely special and memorable to the table to appeal to all. Writer/director Ari Aster…
In First Reformed, writer/director Paul Schrader tells a story about characters living in excruciating personal turmoil. He then gradually develops his movie to be more visceral, so the audience can experience similar pain. You would think keeping movie goers in a state of compelling discomfort would be a tricky balancing act for Schrader, but he succeeds with ease; almost as if this area of emotional discomfort is a particular wheelhouse for the Taxi Driver screenwriter.
There is a tradition in American horror cinema of making a short film with a lot of effects and minimal plot to be eventually used as a calling card. It seems like this practice has found its way into the feature length semi-mainstream. At least, that’s the only explanation for the existence of Trey Edward Shults’ It Comes at Night, a film which shows the director’s abilities as a horror filmmaker – including his great gift for…