The Beatles: Get Back

Ringo participates, and George too: the scene in which he talks about how he came up with ‘I Me Mine’ the night before is particularly moving, with John and Yoko waltzing to the already almost fully-formed song. His epic three-part documentary The Beatles: Get Back is based on the 60 hours of footage and the 150 hours of audio recordings that were captured at the time and kept in Apple Corps’ vaults all these years. Amazingly, Jackson and his team appear to have learned the wrong lesson from this history.…

Why I love Rachel Weisz’s performance in The Deep Blue Sea

‘Adagio for Strings’ by Samuel Barber plays because this moment needs to be operatic. This union represents the “himself” that Freddie sometimes gives. Their bodies are the same ivory marble, both lean with lines of musculature. The story would not work and her character would not stand up if the audience did not see the bliss he once afforded, and so it comes early, a high watermark that acts as a counterpoint to the suffering that follows. What landed was “this wonderful luminosity and wonderful eyes”. She is instantly and…

Lapwing

Give it a go… Share this Share this An atmospheric tale of toxic masculinity in Tudor England from writer Laura Turner and director Philip Stevens.A faraway beachside encampment, somewhere in Tudor England, and toxic masculinity is running rife among the men and women of this fair isle. Low-budget British period drama with some light genre trappings. Published 25 Nov 2021 Share this In Retrospect. Visually and dramatically, the film doesn’t reinvent any wheels, nor does it set out too, instead happy to splice together a satisfyingly intense period drama with…

Is it time to retire the term “documentary”?

This is, of course, not to say that there aren’t valuable works being made in this cinematic sub-category, but the description does, by association, serve to ghettoise the challenging and idiosyncratic work showcased by places like Frames of Representation and, in the US, festivals such as True/False in Missouri. Since 2016, the annual Frames of Representation festival has sought to celebrate the pathfinding and ingenious artists who essentially sculpt with the documentary medium in search of new forms of expression and articulation. To push this line of reasoning further, documentary…

Rebel Dykes

A portrait of lesbian sexuality and survival that doesn’t pull its punches. While Greenham feminist separatists drew comparisons between militarism and everyday male violence towards women, they saw sadomasochism as a reenactment of domestic violence relationships. These intersections of politics and intimacy, party and protest, allow filmmakers Harri Shanahan and Sîan Williams to produce a historical and artistic archive of a cultural history that sits outside of general knowledge. Archives are spaces of violence as well as power, so how can documentary filmmakers produce work that is politically critical of…

Why 49th Parallel is one of the most cunning war films ever made

It was subsequently shown on British television, and following new interest in Powell and Pressburger was re-released in 1984 by the British Film Institute. It also features an all-star cast including Leslie Howard as a pacifist in the Canadian wilds, Laurence Olivier as a French-Canadian fur trapper and Anton Walbrook as a Hutterite leader. Share this Words Sam Manning Share this Share this Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger’s 49th Parallel, the story of six stranded Nazi U-boat sailors who fail in their attempt to cross from Canada into the US…

Reggie Yates: ‘We seldom see Black British coming-of-age stories’

Thankfully, I started to have some level of self-belief and encouragement about 15 years ago and, through that, I started making short films. All of these clubs that are in the film are real places that massively informed my teens. More than anything, the friendship. One of the things that I’m incredibly proud of about this film is that it speaks to a version of Black British youth that we don’t get to see very often, and most importantly the joy of that. When I moved to South London, suddenly…

Pirates

Google is something we’ve barely heard of. This zany opening is the precursor to a feature that foregrounds the vibrant and the celebratory. Tamagotchis are something we all still care about. In making Pirates, Yates has stated his intention to show the lives of Black youth with a narrative other than the more prevalent depictions involving crime or hardship. Share this Share this Reggie Yates’ London-set, Y2K-era debut feature is a rollicking celebration of friendship and Black British music.It’s New Year’s Eve in London. In Retrospect. Transporting the audience on…

House of Gucci

Some shocking accents on display in the trailer. This works in the film’s favour; it’s not exactly sympathetic, but Scott has made a solid attempt to get under the skin of his slippery characters. The most entertaining relationship in the film is between Patrizia and her psychic/co-conspirator Giuseppina Auriemma (Selma Hayek), who provides counsel – and later a hitman – for Signora Gucci. A late scene employs the ‘Humming Chorus’ from Giacomo Puccini’s ‘Madame Butterfly’ to genuinely moving effect, although most of the film plays up the bombastic, over-the-top reputation…

Bad Luck Banging or Loony Porn

In Retrospect. Here, faced with many barriers, a director is experimenting with the film form itself, taking apart all the tools at his disposal and smashing together their raw components to forge something new. In this, quotations, trivia, one-liners, visual gags, and other non sequiturs are accompanied by a mix of archive materials, social media clips and new short sequences filmed using the actors from the other parts recast into new transient roles. Bad Luck Banging or Loony Porn Review by Matt Turner @mattlloydturner Share this Directed by Radu Jude…

In defence of Darren Aronofsky’s The Fountain

Years later, Miller teased that it was the first time he’d “worked on a Batman project with somebody whose vision of Batman was darker than mine.” (The unused script is still available to read online.) With a sudden gap in his schedule, Aronofsky turned his attention to The Fountain, hoping Brad Pitt and Cate Blanchett would join him as his leads – but again, he struggled. In fact, The Fountain wasn’t even meant to be Aronofsky’s third movie. The fact that it does so in such a poetic, tender and…

How The Beatles’ Magical Mystery Tour pioneered the visual album

As Cockroft argues, “The film satirises religion, consumerism, the army, censorship and attitudes to sex, and perhaps most subversively its own audience.” The 15 million people who eventually watched the film during BBC One’s Boxing Day transmission, however, were not impressed by these postmodern flourishes. As Carty explains, “music videos as we would come to know them were not the norm, pop music and abstract visuals was not the norm and long form video projects/video albums didn’t have a frame of reference yet with the general public.” Indeed, McCartney later…

Robert Greene: ‘This film is indictment of how the media portrays survivors’

Drama therapy is not always about giving power back, more about going into yourself to understand how trauma plays out in your body and mind everyday. Joe says on camera, and this was in the cut to the very end, he says, ‘I went from “why me?” to “why am I the one who gets to go back and conquer these demons?” I can see that other people deserve their Lake Viking moment, and maybe vicariously through me, they can kind of get it.’ That was a powerful sentiment, but…

King Richard

Enjoyment. It also has to escape the shadow of a brazen Oscar bid from its star Will Smith, whose open ambition to secure a statuette has garnered nominations for Ali and The Pursuit of Happyness, but his trophy cabinet remains empty. Both yield good results. Fans of the Williams sisters will already have a sense of who their father Richard is – fiercely protective of his daughters and an outspoken courtside presence who, early in their careers, gained almost as much attention as they did. Share this Share this Reinaldo…

Céline Sciamma: ‘I would love for someone to make this film into an anime’

The use of objects in the film is part of that change of time, literalising memory as tactile souvenirs. With the girls they learned the job on the set which is basically learning how to walk again. Except for the pancake scene, but even then there’s a recipe! I’m not really doing screenwriting for other people anymore but it’s something I would love to do again if it was animation. That’s when you love cinema, with everything in it from the costumes to the music is a small revolution. There’s…