REVIEW: He Dreams of Giants

Writing about He Dreams of Giants feels a bit like Kirk Lazarus talking about his acting process.

2002’s Lost in La Mancha was a making-of in search of a finished product. Terry Gilliam’s The Man Who Killed Don Quixote, whose troubled production it documents, was one of the great unfinished movies – until it wasn’t.…

REVIEW: The Father

The Father is an immaculate depiction of a man’s descent into dementia that is all the more harrowing for its formality.

Eighty-year-old Anthony (Anthony Hopkins) owns a stately flat in Maida Vale where has lived for many years. He’s charming but irascible, increasingly prone to outbursts of vitriol; like the one that has driven his latest carer to quit.…

REVIEW: Willy’s Wonderland

For most actors, the switch to straight-to-VOD still feels like a step down. Even now, there’s something about the big screen that seems to promise a sort of immortality not guaranteed by the vagaries of streaming service algorithms.

Not so with Nicolas Cage, for whom acting seems to be an endearing mix of day-job professionalism and performative insanity.…

REVIEW: Shadow in the Cloud

For a year that was itself pretty out-here, 2020 was strangely devoid of cinematic oddities.

As such, I was forced to award my “Mad As Arseholes” award to a film that wasn’t technically released till New Year’s Day.

Shadow in the Cloud is a glossy, unabashed genre mashup, which repositions that old Twilight Zone standard “Nightmare at 20,000 Feet” as WW2 aviation thriller, creature feature, and feminist parable.…

REVIEW: Rams

Based on Grímur Hákonarson’s Hrutar, Rams transplants that film’s woolly, fraternal premise from the rugged slopes of Iceland to Australia.

Bucolic, taciturn Colin (Sam Neill) approaches farming with wistful humour and affection. His brother Les (Michael Caton) is an ornery, cantankerous drunk who makes a habit of passing out in fields.…

REVIEW: Promising Young Woman

A revenge thriller from a former show runner on Killing Eve, Promising Young Woman is every bit as stylish and unique as that pedigree suggests.

It’s a bitter trope that young, male abusers are spared the full brunt of the just system due to their status as a “promising young man”.…

REVIEW: Mank

Perhaps no movie looms larger in the collective consciousness than Citizen Kane; perhaps no filmmaker more legendary than its multi-hyphenate creator Orson Welles, who directed, wrote, and starred in the film.

One of those credits he shares – that of screenwriter, with Herman J.…

REVIEW: Black Bear

A woman in a red swimsuit sits at the end of a wooden dock, shrouded in mist. She (Aubrey Plaza) is still, but clearly shaken; devastated even. There is a sense that she is barely holding it together. It’s an image that Black Bear returns to repeatedly, that of some mysterious trauma; even as it delves into notions of art and artifice.…

REVIEW: Synchronic

With Lovecraftian time-trap horror The Endless, filmmakers Aaron Moorhead and Justin Benson proved their ability to craft ambitious sci-fi on a limited budget.

Synchronic tells in some ways a more of a conventional narrative, but one that plays into many of the same themes of regret and feeling trapped.…