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BiFan 2016 Review: THE FOREST Is A Slow Burn Beauty

In Paul Spurrier's The Forest, Preecha (Asanee Suwan) walks into a bucolic village in nowhere Thailand to begin a new chapter in his life as teacher in the local village. Whatever hope and passion he has for his new profession...

Now on Blu-ray: Erotic Fantasy BELLADONNA OF SADNESS is Resplendent in HD

A few months ago we reported on the singular animated erotic experience that is Yamamoto Eiichi's Belladonna of Sadness. The film, produced in 1973 as part of the experimental adult animation trilogy Animerama, was one of the most unique cinematic...

Review: KABALI, Superstar Rajinikanth's Best Film in Years

For millions of people around the world, the release of a new film from Tamil actor Rajinikanth is more than just a movie, it's an event. Superstar Rajinikanth is a performer whose mere mention inspires near-religious worship. Unfortunately, this has...

Review: TRAIN TO BUSAN Rides the Rails With the Undead

For his live-action debut Train to Busan, indie animation director Yeon Sang-ho, whose films The King of Pigs and The Fake have drawn international acclaim, has taken the zombie thriller, stuck it into the claustrophobic confines of a train, and...

Blu-ray Review: A TOUCH OF ZEN Comes to the Criterion Collection

Halfway through a year already crammed full of impressive releases (with no sign of slowing down... Dekalog for September!), The Criterion Collection has also taken advantage of the recent 4K remaster of King Hu's seminal A Touch of Zen, adding...

Neuchâtel 2016 Review: SEOUL STATION, A Zombie Flick That's a Walker Not A Runner

Yeon Sang-ho’s take on the zombie apocalypse doesn't bring anything fresh to the undead table yet contains enough touches of the social commentary that marks the best works of the genre to stir some interest. An old man, sick and...

Review: COLD WAR 2 Raises the Stakes Dramatically, Keeps the Action Pumping

Leung Ka Fai (aka Tony Leung, aka Big Tony) is the force of nature that propels Cold War 2 through nearly every tight spot it encounters. Returning as M.B. Lee, a granite-faced police official who graciously retired and ceded his...

Review: OUR LITTLE SISTER Packs A Most Gentle Punch

For years now, Japanese director Kore-eda Hirokazu has been making films that have an uncommonly humanist core. Often emotional, sometimes openly feel-good even, his films somehow never become the saccharine dross they would undoubtedly be in lesser hands. One of...

New York Asian 2016 Review: CREEPY, A Master Heads in a New Direction

Creepy has been touted as Kiyoshi Kurosawa's "return" to horror, but it feels, in its own right, like a new departure for the director. Where vintage Kurosawa fare was vague, mysterious, and mournful, Creepy is bracing, black-humored, and overt. A...

New York Asian 2016 Review: WHAT A WONDERFUL FAMILY! Mixes Broad Comedy with Ozu's Legacy

Yôji Yamada is a director known for retreading and reusing elements, both visual and in terms of plot, being the director of many series of movies that have been done across decades. While he really hasn't made a new series...

Review: THE TRUTH BENEATH Unearths Dark, Stylish Mysteries

A great year for Korean genre cinema keeps getting better with the release of Lee Kyoung-mi's long time coming sophomore feature, the riveting The Truth Beneath, a sumptuous and anarchic political thriller, kidnap drama, suspenseful whodunnit and kaleidoscopic descent into...

Review: SUNRISE, Breathless Film Noir, Burning With Anger and Bursting With Style

Indian cinema provides another jolt of electricity to the thriller genre with Sunrise, a tight, punchy neo-noir about child trafficking in Mumbai. Taking place at night, frequently under heavy rain and driven forward by a pulsating minimalist electro score, the...

Review: RAMAN RAGHAV 2.0, Twisted Soulmates Dance With Darkness

In a nation with over a billion residents and an annual output of nearly two thousand feature films every year, there is one name that stands out from the rest and has become the face of the Indian film industry,...

Review: RIGHT NOW, WRONG THEN, Gawky Characters and Awkward Conversations Equal Pure Delight

Following Hong Sangsoo's career guarantees for viewers, at the very least, one thing - developing a keen eye for detail. The auteur's films are remarkably similar to one another, from their lecherous male director/professor characters and conversations over bottles of...

New York Asian 2016 Review: A BRIDE FOR RIP VAN WINKLE Excels At Portraying Womanhood In Today's World

The director of this film, the famed artist and writer Shunji Iwai, started his career doing television films before shaking the entire landscape of Japan with films like Love Letter and Swallowtail Butterfly, and he somewhat goes back to the...

Review: RIVER, Like Fire Running to a Powder Keg

As children, we are often taught that, when someone is in trouble, we should try to help, or if someone is being bullied, we should intervene. But sometimes, there can be unforeseen consequences that would endanger ourselves.  Jamie M. Dagg's...

Review: THREE, Johnnie To Gets His Gun Back

Things are going south in a Hong Kong hospital when a criminal (Wallace Chung), hit by a bullet in the head, is brought for an urgent operation but refuses treatment. Tension rises between a tough cop (Louis Koo) and an...

Review: MY LOVE, DON'T CROSS THAT RIVER, Gentle, Elegant And Genuinely Moving

He was 98. She was 89. They were married for 76 years, had 12 children, six of whom died during their childhood.   That is the story of Jo Byeong-man and Kang Gye Yeol, as told in director Jin Mo-young's...

Toronto Japanese 2016 Review: THE MAGNIFICENT NINE, Magnificent Does Not Begin To Describe It

Juzaburo lives in a post town in rural Japan. The town is heavily taxed by their local government and most of the villagers live in abject poverty. When Tokuheiji returns to town with his new bride Natsu to grow tea...

Review: TE3N A Slow Burn That Never Quite Catches

On paper, Ribhu Dasgupta's Te3n is a no brainer. A thriller set in Kolkata featuring three of India's most respected actors, produced by thriller specialist Sujoy Ghosh (Kahaani), and based on Korean kidnap movie Montage, it feels like all of...