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Welcome to Projected Figures

If you have come to Projected Figures expecting accountancy, you are in the right place. Accountancy is what film writers do: counting minutes, counting words, reducing all cinema’s abstract expressions to calibrations,  evaluations and calculated formulae on a simplified, and simplifying, worksheet. Critics, you see, operate a kind of reverse-alchemy, transforming vibrant sights and sounds into bland verbiage and, if you’re…

Spit

I Spit On Your Grave (Day of the Woman) (1978)

First published by EyeforFilm Our story starts in 1974, when film editor Meir Zarchi witnesses the aftermath of a brutal rape in a park and steps in to help the victim as best he can. Zarchi then decides to write a script as his artistic response to this horrifying experience and four years later, in…

Box

The Box (2009)

First published by EyeforFilm What does it mean when a person is struck by lightning? Is it an act of god? A freak of nature? A cosmic joke? An alien intervention? Magic? Inspiration? Punishment? And what of other, more human tragedies, resulting – directly or indirectly – from our own negligence, selfishness and moral blindness?…

Southland

Southland Tales (2006)

First published by musicOMH By the time Howard Hawks released his much-loved but notoriously confusing The Big Sleep on an unsuspecting public in 1946, he had already removed some 18 minutes of expositional scenes from his original version, now leaving entirely unresolved the question of whether the chauffeur Owen Taylor has turned up dead as a result…

Darko

Donnie Darko (2001)

First published by Daily Info It is October 2000. In a month George Bush will take office, and Richard Kelly is completing his debut feature Donnie Darko. The film premières at Sundance to great acclaim, securing for itself a general US release in October 2001. Then the film disappears down a wormhole (recalling the question “Where is…

Aloys

Aloys (2016)

First published by Little White Lies “Is it true that you regularly call a sex line since your father died?”, young Yen Lee (Yufei Li) asks her apartment block neighbour Aloys Adorn (Georg Friedrich). Yen is onto something. If sex lines are designed to fuel erotic fantasy, rooted in the auditory domain, for those who…

Ghoul

The Ghoul (2016)

In his cluttered, chaotic home office, jovial psychiatrist Alexander Morland (Geoffrey McGivern) has on display a Klein bottle – a paradoxical object whose inside and outside are indistinguishable. “It’s like the bottle version of the Möbius strip,” he explains to his patient Chris (Tom Meeten), before further comparing it to the ouroboros and “eternal return“. All of…

Everyone

War On Everyone (2016)

First published by Real Crime In Albuquerque, New Mexico, single alcoholic Terry Monroe (Alexander Skarsgård) and family man Bob Balaño (Michael Peña) are a pair of police detectives who have long since broken bad. Robbing from the criminal and giving to themselves, they pay practically no heed to the law, although they do have their…

Busan

Train to Busan (2016)

This is an extended version of my onstage introduction to the film when it screened on 6 Oct 2016 as a teaser for the 11th London Korean Film Festival Ladies and gentlemen, it is with great pleasure that I welcome you aboard this special screening of Yeon Sang-ho’s Train to Busan. By early August, the film had already…

Greasy

The Greasy Strangler (2016)

First published in Sight & Sound, October 2016 Synopsis: Los Angeles. Virginal manchild Brayden still lives with his father Ronnie, decades after his mother left with abusive bodybuilder Rick Prickles. On the disco tour that he runs with Ronnie, Brayden meets Janet, and they start dating. By nights, Ronnie covers himself in grease and becomes…