Ash is Purest White – 2018 Zhangke Jia

A pretty daunting film formally- I could see it working on me more with a second and third viewingA three-pronged love story—three different time periods (like Zhangke Jia’s previous Mountains May Depart) and carried out

Batman – 1989 Burton

It is an imaginative triumph from Tim BurtonDeserved production design Oscar win from Anton Furst (committed suicide in 1991) who worked previously on 1987’s Full Metal Jacket-  Burton is the artist here (along with Furst)-

Leave No Trace – 2018 Granik

July 2018 1.0 Another very solid film from Debra Granik (Down to the Bone in 2004 and Winter’s Bone in 2010)- clearly she can create atmosphere and gets strong performances (whether it is Vera Farminga,

Night Flight – 1933 C. Brown

Like an ensemble Grand Hotel film and an answer to Hughes’ Hell’s Angels at the same time with a great cast including both Barrymore’s- John and a walking Lionel Selznick producedActive camera from Clarence Brown-

Eijanaika – 1981 Imamura

It’s very plotted for an Imamura film- a saga, a love story (doomed of course because it’s Imamura), there’s the Ronin story with Ken Ogata and then the larger political and social reform back story

Profound Desires of the Gods – 1968 Imamura

The first color film for Imamura and the first one that is largely outdoors--- this may not sound like a big deal but to a student of Ozu with the shoji doors and control of

Widows – 2018 McQueen

1.0 December 2018 McQueen continues the streak-- of one of the most promising starts to a career (he’s 11 years in now and 4 films) in cinema history He’s great at capturing places, a great

High Society – 1956 Walters

An impressive remake of Cukor’s 1940 The Philadelphia Story. Grace Kelly plays the Katharine Hepburn role, Bing Crosby plays the Cary Grant role and Frank Sinatra plays the Jimmy Stewart role. It’s a testament to

The Wicker Man – 1973 Robin Hardy

It’s a superb screenplay- Sergeant Howie as the no-BS cop and audience surrogate through this mesmerizing pagan village and murder mystery One of Christopher Lee’s best roles/films and that’s saying something with this robust and

The Detective – 1954 Hamer

Name also known as “Father Brown” Hamer the director of Kind Hearts and Coronets Guinness is a chameleon- he disappears- hard to imagine this same bumbling clever Priest is the oak-tree in River Kwai just

Diane – 2018 Kent Jones

First fiction feature from (previously) documentary filmmaker Kent JonesMary Kay Place is great here in the lead- best known to me previously as the mumbling secretary in Being John MalkovichEstelle Parsons is also great in

Permanent Vacation – 1980 Jarmusch

A fringe recommendation and entry in the archives but I think there’s enough there that formally connects with Jarmusch’s oeuvre—even if this doesn’t sniff his 1984 follow-up Strangers in Paradise Inspired by Chantel Ackerman with

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