sibling filmmakers o brother where art thou

The Greatest Sibling Filmmakers: Keeping Cinema in the Family

John Michael McDonagh’s new movie Calvary is quite good. And quite difficult. I intend to write about it in some detail in the near future, but I often find it better to think about difficult things for a while before committing fingertip to keyboard. So, in the meantime, I’m using McDonagh as a springboard to…

By Jonathan Eig
movie trailers philomena

Movie Trailers: Bad Previews and the Misrepresentation of Films

Remember that great line from Shakespeare’s King Lear that opines: “The worst is not. So long as we can say ‘This is the worst’”? It’s not true. I recently attended a showing of Guardians of the Galaxy (2014) in New York’s Times Square where a nearly uncountable number of loud, obnoxious previews appeared before the…

By Simon Hardy Butler

Revisiting Razorback: Pretty Images, Psychotic Yobbos and a Giant Pig

At some point long ago, film studios became acutely aware that taking an unremarkable animal or insect, then radically increasing its size, was a sure-fire recipe for commercial success.  I suppose it makes sense to suggest that this trend began with the release of that most iconic of monster movies, King Kong, in 1933. Others…

By James Curnow
Kasimir Burgess’ Fell

Kasimir Burgess’ Fell: Great Distances and Close Scrutiny

“I don’t know shit about you.” Uttered almost 80 minutes into the 93 minute-long debut feature from Kasimir Burgess, this line perfectly captures the remoteness and intense insular focus of recent Australian film Fell (Felix Media, 2014). Fell follows the story of two men whose lives irreversibly intersect over the tragic hit-and-run death of a…

By Kirsten Stevens
superhero Thor

Where did Storm go?: Representing Race and Gender in Superhero films

Superhero films and the comics that spawned them are famous for their traditionally white male fan-base. It’s a fan-base to which the creators play, with the vast majority of superheroes, and particularly the high profile ones, being white men. This raises issues for the balanced representation of gender and race and for the diversity of…

By Andrew Knighton
body modification Eyes Without A Face

Flesh and Blood: Body Modification and the Movies

I suppose it all began, it cinematic circles at least, with the Germans. The Student of Prague (1913), The Golem (1920). Morbid tales of the undead. The soulless. They begat Frankenstein in 1931 (though I suppose Mary Shelley actually begat it) and the rush was on. Altered versions of the human form would become a…

By Jonathan Eig
superheroes The Avengers

The Fallibility of Superheroes: Fighting the Gorgon

The Avengers Cinematic Universe presents an uncompromisingly problematic worldview. On the one hand, Marvel and Disney have established an unprecedented level of intrigue in their Grand Cinematic Experiment, forcing blockbusters to strive for a higher level, higher budget, higher income, and higher expectations from producers, filmmakers and filmgoers alike. The consolidation of characters and crossover…

By Anthony Pilloud