The Filmmaker's House

The Filmmaker’s House (2020)

The Filmmaker’s House first published by Little White Lies “Sometimes hospitality can go too far. In the story of Lot, he actually offers his daughters to the strangers that arrive at his house.” So says documentarian Marc Isaacs some way into his latest feature The Filmmaker’s House. Unable to get financing for any documentary that…

Belle Vie

Belle Vie (2022)

Opening, as a text caption reveals, in Los Angeles, California, Belle Vie reveals a house under an idyllic blue sky, and inside, a man spooling and playing a reel-to-reel tape of an upbeat jazz number. With its organ and accordion, the piece is obviously as French as the film’s title, marking a cross-cultural, trans-Atlantic dialogue…

Movie Money CONFIDENTIAL

Movie Money CONFIDENTIAL (2022)

Disproving the pernicious old saw that those who cannot do, teach, Rick Pamplin has spent decades dividing his time between writing and directing films (including Provoked, 1989 and Hoover, 2000, whose screenplay is included in the permanent collection of the Motion Picture Academy library in Los Angeles), founding and running his own production company (Pamplin…

Clairevoyant

Clairevoyant (2021)

“I think that feeling the need to express your spirituality comes form a place of deep-rooted longing, and feeling like you need validation, and needing to be loved by others, and need to show instead of do, with quiet confidence. Like me.” So says Claire (co-writer/co-director Micaela Wittman) directly to the camera of heard-but-not-seen Earl…

Space

Space (Prostir) (2021)

Sometimes a production ident appearing at the start of a film can be a guide to its reading. Space (Prostir) may open with text informing the viewer that it was shot in quarantine during the Covid-19 pandemic by self-isolated participants filming with their own smartphones or cameras and communicating with the director Dmitriy Tomashpolski (Stranger,…

Penny Black

The Penny Black (2020)

“I like to be honest, I like being straightforward.” The speaker of these words, Will Cassayd-Smith, prides himself on his honesty. In Joe Saunders’ The Penny Black, of which Will is the principal subject, he boasts repeatedly of his candour and his allegiance to telling the truth. Perhaps it his his way of dissociating himself…

Crowd

The Horror Crowd (2020)

The Horror Crowd first published by VODzilla.co Near the beginning of the documentary The Horror Crowd, its director Ruben Pla, talks to camera in a graffitied alleyway in Hollywood where, he states. “it all began for me.” Pla does not mean his career as an actor, which commenced over two decades earlier, but rather his…

Deadites

Hail to the Deadites (2020)

Hail to the Deadites first published by VODzilla.co “Everything you see in the next 80 minutes was created by Evil Dead fans” reads the blood-red text that opens Steve Villeneuve’s documentary, before the last three words are slashed away and replaced with ‘Deadites’. Make no mistake: Hail to the Deadites is a film by the…

Häxan

Häxan (Häxan: Witchcraft Through The Ages) (1922, 1968)

Häxan (Häxan: Witchcraft Through The Ages) first published by Film4 in 2007 Summary: Benjamin Christensen’s pioneering 1922 semi-documentary account of ‘witch madness’ just will not stay silent.  Review: The year 1922 was to be a landmark in the history of cinema. Not only would it see the release of both Robert Flaherty’s proto-documentary Nanook of the North…