rorschach the secret of roan inish

Perceiving Film: The Cinematic Rorschach Test

We’ve been talking a lot about favourite films recently. Were I to make a list, John Sayles’ 1994 movie The Secret of Roan Inish would rank fairly high. But if you want to discuss and analyse that movie, you would find me useless. I’ve seen it once, and though “never” is a long time away,…

By Jonathan Eig

Poetry In Motion (Pictures): 19 Films that Feature Poetry

There’s a very easy way for screenwriters to make characters seem smart, and that’s to have them quote some verse, usually by a heavyweight poet (Shakespeare, Milton, Yeats or Eliot). Sometimes it’s just a way for the screenwriters to wear their educations on their sleeves.   Splendor in the Grass (1961) Splendor in the Grass,…

By Niall McArdle
top ten list

Top Ten Films: A Mission Impossible

Many film blogs and websites are keen on ‘Top Lists’. They will ask readers to name their ten best, twenty best, even fifty best. This, of course, provokes a lot of debate and discussion, and hopefully increases traffic to their site. On rare occasions, these lists will reveal a Pandora’s Box of diversity. They will…

By Pete Johnson
action movies

20 Great Action Movie Heroes: Defending the Indefensible (Part Two)

Well here it is, part two of my list of the greatest actors and actresses ever to lend their talents to the action movie genre, following on from the list I wrote two weeks ago. Once again, I’ve attempted to provide an interesting and diverse cross-section of individuals. There are a range of actresses and…

By James Curnow
Richard Quine

Strangers When We Meet: Getting to know Richard Quine

Fifty years from now, when they update the film history textbooks, which current directors will merit a section? Some of the older vets are obvious. Scorsese and Spielberg. Almodovar and Von Trier. Zhang Yimou. Household names to film connoisseurs. What about Francis Lawrence, Shane Black, Chris Buck, Pierre Coffin, and Zack Snyder? They directed (or…

By Jonathan Eig
Batman & Robin Hood

Robin Hood versus Batman: Vigilantes and Villains

Robin Hood and Batman have always had a lot in common; aside from their penchant for dressing up, their main point of commonality is that they share a particular brand of stylish vigilante justice. Both the caped and capped crusaders are driven by isolation and personal tragedy, each working outside the accepted laws of the…

By John de Gruyther
charles dickens the life and adventures of nicholas nickleby

The best of films: Charles Dickens, the cinema, and the trials of adaptation

Could the film of a live performance be the definitive screen version of a Charles Dickens novel? I asked myself this recently after contemplating The Life and Adventures of Nicholas Nickleby, a masterful, 8-hour-long play adapted from the titular Dickens novel, which I saw on Broadway more than 30 years ago and now periodically rewatch…

By Simon Butler