Review: Beyond The Visible: Hilma Af Klint

I shouldn’t be surprised that I haven’t heard of the artist Hilma af Klint. Unfortunately, one of the misfortunes of being in a patriarchal society is the fact that our history has been written by men for men. The hard work, struggles and achievements of many female pioneers have been swept to the side in order to place their male peers on a pedestal. In the same way I was stunned last year by the content of “Sisters With Transistors” (you can read my review here and interview with Lisa Rovner the film’s director here), I was left stunned and inspired by the sheer beauty and power of Hilma’s work. This outstanding documentary by German filmmaker Halina Dyrschka is worth seeking out and an important addition to the conversation surrounding women’s involvement in the history of creative arts. Continue reading Review: Beyond The Visible: Hilma Af Klint

Kajillionaire #LFF2020Review

July’s latest, “Kajillionaire”, sees her carrying straight ahead in her now signature style, and so is not likely to change much for either party. The film tells the story of Old Dolio (Evan Rachel Wood), a twenty-something woman who lives and works with her parents (Debra Winger and Richard Jenkins) as thieves and con-artists in Los Angeles. Old Dolio has for her whole life only ever been used as a playing piece in her parents’ efforts to become rich – her name came from a homeless man who won the lottery, in a vain attempt to get some of his newfound money from him – and the closest thing to love and affection she’s ever received from her parents is the even share she gets of their con jobs. Continue reading Kajillionaire #LFF2020Review

#Womeninaction- Retrospective review: Destroyer

“Destroyer” (2018) isn’t your typical action movie. For one thing, it stars Nicole Kidman who isn’t the first person I think of when I think “action movie.” It’s also directed by a woman who is not Kathryn Bigelow, which is something of an anomaly. Director Karyn Kusama, who you might know as the director of the cult classic Jennifer’s Body, plays with the typical cop drama here. She flips the gendered stereotype on its head and crafts an intense story with Detective Erin Bell (Nicole Kidman) at the center. Continue reading #Womeninaction- Retrospective review: Destroyer

Why “She Dies Tomorrow” is the ‘Perfect’ Representation of 2020 as a Year

“She Dies Tomorrow” is a horror film like nothing else you’ll see this year. With no word of a lie, you will either fall into two camps after watching this film, meaning you’ll either love it or you will hate it. It’s that type of film which will either bore you to tears (tears of frustration or rage) or it’ll leave you dizzy and intoxicated by its surreal, haunting beauty. Looking online at the audience scores and reviews, “She Dies Tomorrow” seems to have frustrated many regular viewers (basically anyone who isn’t a film critic), and this is understandable. The film marketed as a straightforward ‘ordinary’ horror flick, but there’s nothing straightforward nor ordinary about “She Dies Tomorrow”. If anything, the film and its reaction sums up the bizarre and surreal world we find ourselves in. You either belong to one side of the spectrum, there is no middle ground. You’re either on the side of the film critic or you’re against them. Continue reading Why “She Dies Tomorrow” is the ‘Perfect’ Representation of 2020 as a Year

Review: She Dies Tomorrow

What would you do if  I told you that today was your last day on this planet? Would your galvanized restlessness motivate you to spend every waking moment with the most accessible loved one? Would you, in a state of fear, find the closest possible place to go skydiving? Would you suddenly become religious and confess all your sins to a priest–or would you do the alternative and regurgitate every mistake you’ve ever made with a glass of Cabernet Sauvignon in hand? Continue reading Review: She Dies Tomorrow

Fantasia Festival Review: Cosmic Candy

You may be forgiven if your first impression of Rinio Dragasaki’s directorial debut, “Cosmic Candy” (2019) looks like a Day-glo fairy tale adventure or a surrealistic drug trip. But the film itself does not veer into whimsicality as much as you think; as it is at heart a comedy/drama about holding onto emotional baggage and learning to let go of said baggage. Continue reading Fantasia Festival Review: Cosmic Candy

Retrospective Review: “Band Aid”

Anna (Zoe Lister-Jones) and Ben (Adam Pally) are well past the honeymoon phase of their marriage. All they do is fight. So, in a last-ditch effort, the pair create a band – roping in their neighbor Dave (Fred Armisen) – so that they can fight through song. Watching the couple navigate their struggles and hurt through song starts off fun. Their band, The Dirty DIshes, is named after a particular area of contention in their house. Continue reading Retrospective Review: “Band Aid”

Sheffield Doc Fest Exclusive Review: The Kiosk (Le Kiosque)

In the world of the Kiosk, everything is within a 2-metre distance. It’s a small, cramped and confined world, certainly not one for those suffering from claustrophobia. We find ourselves in the world of the Kiosk, seeing it through the eyes of the young French filmmaker Alexandra Pianelli. The Kiosk has been in her family for four generations now, and we can see the history of this world around us. In the coin trays, we can see how the wood has been worn down after years of fingers rummaging around for the right change, “the fossils of our fingers” is the way that the director describes it to us. Previously Alexandra’s mother was the sole inhabitant of this world, but now Alexandra is experiencing it and we are with her every step of the way. Continue reading Sheffield Doc Fest Exclusive Review: The Kiosk (Le Kiosque)

Review: The High Note

“The High Note” is a film that just bursts onto the screen with the explosive firepower of an atomic bomb. This is a film I can confidently say I am absolutely in love with; a film that I am grateful for because of the mere fact of its existence; a film that both took me by surprise and shifted my thoughts and feelings away from the disdainful situation the world is in. A film so comfy, but significant nonetheless–one that feeds the starved appetite of the tired, worn out soul. Continue reading Review: The High Note

Mental Health Awareness Month: How “Frozen” Thaws Fearful Hearts

When reflecting upon the cinema that we consumed as children, we often remember most fondly the tales that excited us, humoured us, or maybe even frightened us. For many, regardless of generation, Disney has been a big contributor to such memories. But the best children’s tales contain valuable messages, or even truths, in their stories. Although I was a teenager in his last year of high school when Disney’s “Frozen” (2013) was released, it is a film that I believe will allow children and adults alike to recognise and understand lessons in mental health for generations to come. Continue reading Mental Health Awareness Month: How “Frozen” Thaws Fearful Hearts