Author: Kurt Brokaw

Senior film critic Kurt Brokaw reviews New York’s six major film festivals plus individual features and shorts of merit. He’s taught courses in film noir, early lesbian fiction, and Jewish-themed cinema at The 92nd Street Y for 15 years.

Articles Written by Kurt Brokaw:

Governments Behaving Badly

Oranges and Sunshine (Jim Loach. 2011. England/Australia. 105 min.) Just when you figured England had more than enough social and political crises on its hands and conscience—the Murdoch/Scotland Yard revelations, rioting in the streets and widespread youthful discontent, for openers—along comes Jim Loach’s knockout, tell-all drama, revealing that many generations of British children through the… Read more »

Summer Doc Reviews: Caves, Cowboys and Coke

Cave of Forgotten Dreams (Werner Herzog. 2010. France/Canada/USA/UK/Germany. 90 min.) It’s inevitable when you walk into a Werner Herzog film that you’ll be taken somewhere you’ve never been and usually can’t imagine ever visiting. Early on it was Herzog’s adversarial leading man, Klaus Kinski, who did the heavy lifting in the gruelingly unforgettable dramas Fitzcarraldo,… Read more »

Tribeca 2011: Critic's Choice – Shorts

Below are the Critic’s Choice short picks. For a fest overview and the features, click here. Critic’s Choice – Tribeca Shorts Eva-Working Title (Dor Fadlon. 2010. Israel. 14 min.) Pentecost (Peter McDonald. 2010. Ireland. 11 min.) New York doesn’t shortchange shorts. The New York Film Festival and New Directors/New Films each show selected short films… Read more »

Tribeca 2011: Critic's Choice – Features

A Decade In the Life of the Tribeca Film Festival If you want eight million New Yorkers and millions of vacationers to see more than Ground Zero when they visit lower Manhattan, you need to pick movies that will attract the widest possible range of moviegoers. Tribeca Film Festival founders Robert De Niro, Jane Rosenthal,… Read more »

New Directors/New Films 2011 – Critic's Choice

For the second consecutive year, The Independent’s senior film critic, Kurt Brokaw, has screened the entire lineup of New Directors/New Films and is reviewing his favorites below, including Margin Call, The Black Power Mixtape 1967-1975, Night Hunter, and Incendies. In addition to teaching literature and business courses for the New School University for more than… Read more »

Rendez-Vous With French Cinema – Critic's Choice

Potiche (François Ozon. 2010. France. 103 min.) Fit and trim in her tailored jogging suit, 69-year-old Catherine Deneuve sprints through a dappled countryside near Sainte-Gudule in northern France. It is 1977, and nature stirs around her. Birds tweet, squirrels frolic, and rabbits mate as the decorative opening titles playfully slide in and around this first… Read more »

Leader of Red Sheep

Red Shirley, Lou Reed’s 28-minute homage to his 101-year-old cousin, Shirley Novick, had its New York premiere January 15th, as part of the 20th Annual New York Jewish Film Festival which runs through January 27th. Novick (known as Shulamit Rabinowitz before her marriage to the late editor of the Yiddish daily, The Morning Freiheit, Paul… Read more »

Reviews: Jarecki's "All Good Things" and Hickenlooper's "Casino Jack"

All Good Things (Andrew Jarecki. 2010. USA. 132 min.) Casino Jack (George Hickenlooper. 2010. USA. 108 min.) As a dramatic form, today’s crime docudramas have a rich literary heritage originating in true-crime magazines like True Detective and Master Detective, of the 1930s. These “slicks” were different from their fictional counterparts, the “pulps,” that grew Raymond… Read more »

NYFF Critic's Choice – "The Robber"

The Independent’s senior film critic Kurt Brokaw offers his picks from the 2010 New York Film Festival, which runs September 24th through October 10th. For a complete list of his selections, click here. The Robber (Benjamin Heisenberg. 2010. Austria-Germany. 96 min.) Bet you can’t think of another heist movie with a premise this simple and… Read more »

NYFF Critic's Choice – "Black Venus"

The Independent’s senior film critic Kurt Brokaw offers his picks from the 2010 New York Film Festival, which runs September 24th through October 10th. For a complete list of his selections, click here. Black Venus (Abdellatif Kechiche. 2010. France. 159 min.) The camera swings up past the startling, life-size plaster cast of the African woman,… Read more »