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.



By: Addison Wylie One half of Christian Petzold’s Phoenix is an arresting period drama about redefining oneself after a devastating tragedy.  The other half is a mystery consisting of drawn-out contrivances.  The viewer feels one heck of a tug-o-war as they vary between liking Phoenix and becoming fed up with it. Even when Phoenix derails itself with unconvincing misunderstandings, the film never loses the captivating performances.  Petzold’s cast fits seamlessly within the post-WWII backdrop with…



By: Addison Wylie A great deal of unease works in filmmaker Cate Shortland’s favour.  Her dramatic period piece Lore always feels restless.  Characters – young and old – are constantly looking for stability and safety and the environments are always changing. That’s not to hint that Lore is inconsistent with a short attention span.  It’s a compliment that Shortland has found the perfect unsettling tone to allow all her elements to work on. Lore shows…