Reviews

Tribeca 2010 Critic's Choice: "Visionaries"

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Visionaries (Chuck Workman. 2010. USA. 90 min.) If you were tasked with pulling together a comprehensive history of experimental cinema from the 1920s through today—running exactly 90 minutes—who would you trust to research and assemble such a formidable project? Chances are Chuck Workman would top your list; his reputation as the premiere montage specialist has… Read more »

Defending Tribeca in an Era of Megabrands

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Those French scamps who walked off with this year’s Best Short Oscar (LogoRama) didn’t sneak in a Tribeca Film Festival logo among their 2,500 global power players. But TFF’s simple, clean graphic wouldn’t have looked out of place next to MGM’s lion and Universal’s revolving world. TFF still has only a fraction (nine years) of… Read more »

Tribeca 2010 Critic's Choice: "The Killer Inside Me"

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The Killer Inside Me (Michael Winterbottom. 2010. USA. 109 min.) Deep into Michael Winterbottom’s indelibly accurate rendering of Jim Thompson’s most important novel, is a defining scene in an Oklahoma jailhouse. Sheriff Lou Ford (Casey Affleck, as soulless a killing machine as any lifelong Thompson fan could wish for) is trying to cheer up the… Read more »

Tribeca 2010 Critic's Choice: "The White Meadows"

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The White Meadows (Mohammad Rasoulof. 2009. Iran. 93 min.) “My job has to do with people’s heartaches,” says Rahmat the boatman (Hassan Pourshirazi), a serious and purposeful man whose unending task seems to be circling the tiny islands and inlets spotted through Lake Urmia, one of the largest saltwater lakes in the world. Rahmat’s specific… Read more »

Best of the Shorts: Tribeca 2010

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At the movies, I want to laugh out loud, clutch my armrest in terror, weep uncontrollably, and be amazed. I’ll admit my standards are high and past Tribeca Film Festivals have been serious enablers of my lofty expectations. So I suppose it was inevitable that one year I would be a tad disappointed by their… Read more »

Taking the Temp of SXSW 2010

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The fact that Kathryn Bigelow’s The Hurt Locker made its US premiere one year ago at SXSW upped the intrigue this year, prompting me to wonder if one of 2010’s 134 features or 126 shorts would achieve that rarefied status. SXSW 2010 included films featuring some Hollywood heavyweights, from Bill Murray, Robert Duval, and Sissy… Read more »

Best of New Directors/New Films 2010: Shorts

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Best of 11 Short Films from New Directors/New Films Logorama (H5: François Alaux, Hervé de Crécy, and Ludovic Houplain. 2009. France. 17 min.) And you thought only Chuck Workman could give us a fast-cut world of colliding, spiraling images we somehow retain. Advertising’s even faster, more vivid, more memorable, because the 2,500-and-counting corporate logos that… Read more »

Best of New Directors/New Films: Bill Cunningham New York

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Bill Cunningham New York (Richard Press. 2010. USA. 84 min.) “I let the street speak to me.” At 80 and still pedaling a Schwinn bike (his 29th, the other 28 rode off without him), the New York Times style photographer knows Manhattan sidewalks and the women and men walking them better than anyone. Midtown strollers… Read more »

Best of New Directors/New Films: Samson and Delilah

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Samson and Delilah (Warwick Thornton. 2009. Australia. 101 min.) Jeff Bridges can teach you a sad thing or two about chronic alcoholism in Crazy Heart. And if you’d like a primer in the despair of speed and heroin, look no further than Julian Schnabel’s artful filming of Lou Reed’s Berlin concert. But petrol sniffing? Well,… Read more »

Best of New Directors/New Films: The Evening Dress

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The Evening Dress (La Robe du soir) (Myriam Aziza. 2009. France. 98 min.) You can count on one hand the recent films that get adolescent sexual awakening right. If you narrow that to female adolescent sexual longings, only a few stand out. Water Lilies, made in France in 2007 about a girls’ synchronized swim team,… Read more »