The Academy Awards have been criticized for not being ambitious or diverse enough, which is true. But, I’ve seen plenty of risks taken in the Best Foreign Language Film category; mostly from movies I admire more than I actually enjoy. This time last year, Lebanon’s Capernaum received a public theatrical run shortly after being nominated for the Best Foreign Language Film Oscar. I remember walking away from the film with a heavy heart. It was…
The Toronto Animation Arts Festival International (February 15-17) is an essential stop for movie goers who indulge in worldwide animation.
Toronto filmmaker Sofia Bohdanowicz travels to Paris, France to tentatively live with a colleague’s mother, Juliane Sellam, in the documentary Maison du Bonheur, a boring film that never lives up to its experimental ambition.
Faces Places has more charm in a single frame than most movies carry in an-hour-and-a-half. For that quality alone, it’s amazing.
Le Ride is proof of the intrepid courage and exhausting circumstances that happen during long cross-country treks. The documentary is also proof that writer/director/star Phil Keoghan can walk the walk and talk the talk.
Unsimulated sex and its utilization in film is a continuing debate between movie aficionados on whether the uncensored acts add to a story or the general moviegoing experience. French filmmakers Olivier Ducastel and Jacques Martineau create a controversial – yet very convincing – argument towards the issue in their minimalist drama Paris 05:59: Theo & Hugo.
To onlookers enjoying a day on the beach, Rose, Lili, and Hélène appear to be close girlfriends. Underneath their contentment is a turbulent past also experienced by other Jewish people who were fortunate to escape Auschwitz.
Aleksandr Sokurov’s Francofonia is a spiritual successor to his innovative 2002 film Russian Ark, more so thematically than aesthetically. Russian Ark was a narrativized tour of The Hermitage that doubly served as a re-enactment of parts of Russian history. The most important fact about Russian Ark, however, is that it was shot entirely in one take – a formal element missing from Sokurov’s new film.