Film: “The Women’s Balcony”

This Hebrew-language Israeli film takes place in a Mizrahi neighborhood in modern Jerusalem that is served by an Orthodox temple. As written by Shlomit Nehama, and directed by Emil Ben-Shimon, the film never ventures outside of the neighborhood, and all characters in the story worship at that temple, or at an adjacent one. The story…

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Film: “Your Name”

When I choose to see a particular film, it’s usually because something about it appeals to me, so that I expect to enjoy the experience. But sometimes, a film comes along that touches a nerve with the public at large and, often quite unexpectedly, becomes a phenomenon. That is intriguing enough in itself to get…

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Film: “Norman: The Moderate Rise and Tragic Fall of a New York Fixer”

While this sometimes witty and skillfully made modern fable is fitfully entertaining – and loaded with fresh, richly textured views of New York City – it is also frustrating. The title character, played by a nearly unrecognizable Richard Gere, is called a “fixer”; i.e., someone who “fixes” people up with other people so that they…

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Film: “Graduation”

Near the end of this gripping film from Romania, the main character, a doctor, while riding on a bus, looks out the window and sees one of the men who had just been in a line-up of suspects in the sexual assault of his teenage daughter. She failed to identify any of them, but he…

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Film: “The Blackcoat’s Daughter”

Don’t look for anything original in this effective creeper. It keeps its focus limited and harsh, and delivers some creepy chills in an hour and a half. But nothing about it should keep you up at night, it’s that forgettable. But I think writer-director Osgood Perkins is pleased with that result. The son of Anthony…

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A Filmmaker Responds

My most recent post was about the Queens World Film Festival. I received a response from one of the filmmakers I interviewed for that post. My interviews, which I record, are rather casual and free-form. Aleksandar Kostic felt that my summary did not leave the impression that he wanted to make. I’m giving him the opportunity…

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Queens World Film Festival 2017: Preview

There was a press reception for the upcoming Queens World Film Festival on February 14th, and I got a chance to meet some of the artists from this year’s films. It was almost too much to take in. The festival has become larger, with more films from more countries than ever before. And, from at…

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Film: Someone Else

SOMEONE ELSE trailer from Nelson Kim on Vimeo. This movie out of South Korea is sure to keep you guessing until the end. Watch trailer on Vimeo.     Parallel Dreams: Watch trailer on Vimeo     Parallel Dreams – Film Trailer from Aleksandar Kostic on Vimeo.     A Long Time For Lovers: Watch trailer…

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Will the “Toni Erdmann” remake hurt Maren Ade’s career?

As David Ehrlich noted some weeks ago, an American remake of “Toni Erdmann” was a “bad idea”, but it was also inevitable. And how could it not be? Not just because it was the best film of 2016 – in the opinion of many critics, myself included – but because it was a story with…

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Film: “The Salesman” and 2016 Wrap-up

One of the five Best Foreign Film Oscar nominees, “The Salesman” is the latest film from Iranian director Asghar Farhadi, who won the best foreign film oscar in 2011 for “A Separation”. After having seen both films, I find Farhadi to be an exceptionally talented artist. He appears to be serving a personal vision that…

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