Cristian Mungiu Graduation

Review: Cristian Mungiu’s ‘Graduation’

In the opening shot of Cristian Mungiu’s groundbreaking 4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days (2007), we see fish swimming in a bowl. Behind the bowl, a poster of New York stands as a paradise forever out of reach. That suggestion of a free world beyond the reach of everyday Romanians becomes far more overt…

By Jonathan Eig
The Kind Words

Reviewing Shemi Zarhin’s The Kind Words: Is Perfection Enough?

How important is scope when determining a movie’s value? I am taunted by this question every time I get into an argument with someone over the relative worth of a virtually perfect smaller movie – say, The Full Monty – and a highly flawed, grand endeavour – say, Gangs of New York. At the risk…

By Jonathan Eig
Tiny Furniture

For Young and Old: The Greatest Living Directors Sorted by Age

I recently wrote a piece choosing the four most significant directors from each of eleven countries. I referred to the lists as Mount Rushmores. (You can read it here, if so interested). The response I got, with dozens of fans telling me just how wrong I was, has inspired me to do it again. This…

By Jonathan Eig
Asghar Farhadi's About Elly

Reviewing ‘About Elly’: Is Asghar Farhadi the Finest Filmmaker Working Today?

It begins life as an Iranian Big Chill and at the end of Act 1, it morphs into Antonioni’s iconic L’Avventura. But by the time the various plot intrigues have finished spinning out, Asghar Farhadi’s About Elly has emerged as something unique and wondrous: a taut drama full of perfectly-drawn characters and effective suspense, all…

By Jonathan Eig