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Fantastic Fest 2016 Review: THE VOID Is Fulci-Flavored Hell

The Void draws inspiration from a number of horror influences, including Hellraiser, The Beyond, H.P. Lovecraft, and Lucio Fulci. The film premiered at Fantastic Fest 2016 in Austin to a packed house, with producer Casey Walker and directors Jeremy Gillespie and...

Fantastic Fest 2016 Review: 24x36: A Movie About Movie Posters

A niche market for high-quality, limited-run movie posters has popped up in the last decade, with no signs of slowing down. If you're one of the fervent collectors of these beauties, you know the names Mondo, Skuzzles, Grey Matter Art, and...

Fantastic Fest 2016 Review: The Unbearable Lightness of TONI ERDMANN

German filmmaker Maren Ade's third feature, Toni Erdmann, about an estranged father connecting with his adult daughter in increasingly unorthodox and aggravating ways, garnered glowing critical praise when it premiered in competition at Cannes this past spring. While there is...

Fantastic Fest 2016 Review: ZOOLOGY, How Natasha's Tail Set Her Free

Everyone hopes that they are special and unique in some way. Whether it's a subtle uniqueness that only presents itself in being exceptional within our own little circle, or the kind of superhuman abilities that we attribute to those who...

Toronto 2016 Review: SALT AND FIRE, A Lukewarm Climate Change Parable

Roger Ebert once said of Werner Herzog that, 'even his failures are spectacular.' I'm curious if he were alive today, what he would have made of Salt and Fire, a rushed, sloppy and rather turgid film that has been (charitably)...

Blu-ray Review: BLOOD SIMPLE, Satisfying Neo Noir At Its Best

It's always fun to witness the debut of a fantastic filmmaker. In this case, it's the birth of TWO filmmakers, the team of Joel and Ethan Coen, who debuted in the lexicon of cinema with the neo-noir film Blood Simple in 1984....

Now on Blu-ray: VALLEY OF THE DOLLS and BEYOND, The American Dream Melts Into Psychedelic Mush On Criterion Blu

Brand new from the Criterion Collection this month is a pair of whacked out features that chronicle the decay of the American Dream in glorious high definition. Mark Robson's Valley of the Dolls is an adaptation of Jaqueline Suzanne's best...

Now on Blu-ray: EVILS OF THE NIGHT and TABOO, A Sleazy Double Header

Vinegar Syndrome recently released a pair of super sleazy films that might be of interest. An alien invasion/abduction horror from the '80s called Evils of the Night delivers lots of skin and a few bloody deaths, while adult classic Taboo...

Blu-ray Review: DISCO GODFATHER, A Gaudy, Goofy, Glorious Film From Rudy Ray Moore

Vinegar Syndrome closes out their series of Rudy Ray Moore films with his fourth, and sadly final, major motion picture, Disco Godfather. Moore's movie star shone bright in the mid to late '70s, but by the end of the decade...

Review: OPERATION AVALANCHE, Reel Emotion and the Faking of the Moon Landing

There is a lure to the film camera that is almost primal. It draws you in, ever closer, a potent combo of machine and magic. Pressed against your ear and cheek, the click-whir miracle of celluloid is god calling you...

Toronto 2016 Review: THE B-SIDE, A Sunny Portrait of Polaroid Photographer Elsa Dorfman

"Almost all human endeavour is ephemeral, all that is left in the end is love and friendship." So said Errol Morris at the screening of his latest movie, The B-Side, in which he spends a little over an hour on-screen...

Toronto 2016 Review: TWISTED Faithfully Re-Enacts Something That Did Not Happen

You have probably heard (or used) the expression, 'Never let the truth get in the way of a good story.' Well, a good one happened in Thorold, Ontario, Canada in 1996. A pregnant summer storm blew through the niagara region,...

Blu-ray Review: ONCE WERE WARRIORS, Still Vibrant and Effective 20 Years Later

The early '90s were a magical time for independent cinema. There has always been a lot of talk about how American independent cinema became a major cultural force during those years. Books like Spike, Mike, Slackers, & Dykes focused on...

Now on Blu-ray: RAIDERS!, An Engaging Tale of Bootstrap Ingenuity

When Steven Spielberg's Raiders of the Lost Ark was released in 1981, it was unlike anything American theaters had seen for at least a generation. Set in 1936, the homage to the adventure serials of the '30s and '40s proved...

Toronto 2016 Review: I AM THE PRETTY THING THAT LIVES IN THE HOUSE Leaves A Ghostly Impression

When Lily, an extended care nurse in white pumps and a mustard cardigan, arrives at this grand old country house to look after its aging and infirm owner, she chides herself on the first night, 'No snooping!' However, that discipline...

Toronto 2016 Review: COLOSSAL, A Film of Many Moods, Not to be Missed

Spanish director Nacho Vigalondo is no stranger to readers of these pages, his films Timecrimes, Extraterrestrial and Open Windows have held sway over many in the genre film community. In many ways Colossal however is his most accomplished and in...

Toronto 2016 Review: THE DREAMED PATH, A Minimalist Masterwork

German director Angela Schanelec's latest look at the nature of migration, stasis and loneliness should prove an equally striking and challenging cinematic event for new viewers, while previous enthusiasts of her opaque and minimalist oeuvre will be elated by this...

Toronto 2016 Review: THINGS TO COME Ponders the Wilderness of Self with Supreme Gentleness

French filmmaker Mia Hansen-Løve, best known for tales of youth Eden and Goodbye First Love, teams up with iconic actress Isabelle Huppert for Things To Come, a quietly affecting story about a bourgeois middle-aged philosophy teacher and the big changes...

Review: CAMERAPERSON, A Moving Self-Portrait Of A Veteran Cinematographer

Kirsten Johnson's career as a cinematographer is a long and accomplished one in the documentary field. She is responsible for images of countless documentaries by filmmakers such as Laura Poitras, Michael Moore, Kirby Dick and many more. Her work took...

Review: KICKS Bristles With Immediacy, Excitement and Urgency

Kicks, a film about a hapless teenager who finds himself launched into the Bay Area's violent underbelly after being jumped for his new sneakers, bristles with immediacy, excitement and urgency. It's a remarkably assured, confident movie for a debut feature...