The Invisible Raptor

The Invisible Raptor (2023)

The Invisible Raptor had its UK première at the Glasgow FrightFest 2024. Some films come with their uniquely recombinative premise front-loaded, and commit fully to their bit. Snakes on a Plane, Shark Exorcist or Cocaine Bear – these are pretty much what they say on the tin, and deliver exactly what their titles promise. They…

Invisible Man

The Invisible Man (2020)

The Invisible Man first published by Dirty Movies Conventional stalk-and-slash thrillers make an ally of the darkness. After all, it is in the shadows that monsters hide, and that the imagination, starved of visual stimulus, fills the empty spaces with its own panicky projections. Written and directed by Leigh Whannell (Insidious: Chapter 3, 2013; Upgrade,…

(Yūzai)

My Friend ‘A’ (Yūzai) (2018)

My Friend ‘A’ (Yūzai) first published as a programme note for the Japan Foundation Touring Film Programme 2019 When we first meet the two principal characters of Takahisa Zeze’s My Friend ‘A’ (Yūzai), they are hard to tell apart. We see them in medium shot being led by their new boss to the factory where they…

The Invisible Woman (2013)

Review first published by Little White Lies “Ellen will give you a wonderful performance.” With these words, Mrs Ternan (Kristin Scott Thomas) introduces her 18-year-old daughter Ellen ‘Nelly’ Ternan (Felicity Jones) to the much older Charles Dickens (Ralph Fiennes) — prolific novelist, amateur actor, philanthropist, and all-round Victorian celebrity — as he prepares to stage the play ‘The Frozen Deep’ by his friend Wilkie…

Hanky Panky

Hanky Panky (2023)

Hanky Panky has its world première at the LA Comedy Film Festival, 2023 The first words heard in Hanky Panky set the tone. “Aw fuck!” says the man racing in panic across a field of snow, as he struggles both to escape and to get a phone signal. Finally connecting with emergency services, he manages…

Hypochondriac

Hypochondriac (2022)

Hypochrondriac had its world première at SXSW 2022 As its very title implies, Hypochondriac is concerned with symptomatology and its absence, and with pathologies both real and imagined. This preoccupation with therapy is hammered home by a series of sequences involving medical consultations, where a parade of different doctors keeps repeating to protagonist Will (Zach…

Our First Priority

Our First Priority (2022)

The title derives from a glib corporate medical slogan (“Where your care is our first priority”) which we see being used as a screen saver on a doctor’s computer at the beginning of Ariel Baska’s short film. What follows will interrogate and undermine that message, as ten-year-old Hannah (Violet Gotcher) visits the hospital for a…

Implanted

Implanted (2021)

An African-American man staggers though a dark alleyway, clutching – and punching at – his own head. He collapses, gets up, reels about like someone intoxicated, or perhaps a zombie, his hands and the back of his jacket bloody. Bent over and in obvious distress, unsteady and unstable, he lies down in the road, and…

Mortimer

Adam Egypt Mortimer on keeping Daniel real

Adam Egypt Mortimer on keeping Daniel real was first published by SciFiNow Magazine as a discursive essay with select quotes, but here is a much longer transcript of the original interview (conducted in 2019). APB: Who the hell is Adam Egypt Mortimer? What were you before all this movie stuff happened, and how did you…

Daniel Isn't Real

Daniel Isn’t Real (2019)

Daniel Isn’t Real first published by Little White Lies. A different review of the film can be found here. It is all in the title. Lots of films – which won’t be named here to avoid spoiling – only reveal the imaginariness of a character’s ‘invisible friend’ as a Big Twist™, but we know from…

Unseeing

Unseeing Evil (2020)

“I’d be invisible,” whispers Jacob (Chanel Williams), when asked by young Tommy (Kal-el Tuck) what superpowers he would like to have. In a sense Jacob is the classic invisible friend – a confidante and playmate to a lonely boy in an otherwise empty bedroom. Yet Tommy is blind, so that only we can see what…