37 Rebirth

8:37 Rebirth (2021)

8:37 Rebirth opens with a bang that will reverberate throughout the film. In a Turkish-owned corner store in the City of Halifax, Nova Scotia, we see nine-year-old Sergei Radic (Benjamin Walker) staring in horror, and 18-year-old, bloody-faced Jared Peters (Kylar Johnson) holding a gun. At first the incident itself is not shown, just its immediate…

The Last Client

The Last Client (Klienten) (2022)

The Last Client (Klienten) had its UK première at FrightFest 2022 Written by Anders Rønnow Klarlund and Jacob Weinrich (who together pen crime novels under the collective pseudonym A.J. Kazinski), The Last Client (Klienten) is a psychological thriller, unfolding mostly within the confines of a consulting room, as a therapist finds her connections to her…

The Show

The Show (2020)

The Show first published by VODzilla.co Mitch Jenkins’ The Show begins with a view of Planet Earth from outer space, before zooming in to the centre of England, and finally descending upon a puddle by a motorway from which the title is seen emerging as a car passes. It is an apt introduction to a…

Parker Sessions

The Parker Sessions (2021)

The Parker Sessions has its international première at FrightFest 2021; first published by VODzilla.co “Rule number one,” Robert (Danny James) tells his new client in the first of several sessions that they have together. “I will be frank with you, and I expect you to be completely honest with me. No bullshit, ok? I want…

Les Dames du Bois de Boulogne

Les Dames du Bois de Boulogne (1945)

Les Dames du Bois de Boulogne first published by Movie Gazette Maria Casarès, who fought against the fascists in the Spanish Civil War, and then fled to France where she became Albert Camus’ lover and the star of his plays, is perhaps best known for her portrayal of Death in Jean Cocteau’s Orphée (1950) –…

Motherly

Motherly (2020)

Motherly first published by VODzilla.co In the opening sequence of Motherly, we see various exteriors of a desolate modern farmhouse and barn, and then young girl Beth McKinley (Tessa Kozma) inside sitting alone on the sofa in a blindfold, while adult Kate (Lora Burke, For The Sake Of Vicious) stands over her with a kitchen…

Sissy

Sissy (2021)

Sissy had its world première at SXSW 2022 At the beginning of Sissy, from co-writing/co-directing team Hannah Barlow and Kane Senes (For Now, 2017), we see online influencer Cecilia (Aisha Dee) preaching the bland bromides of wellness. Yet the hyperventilation exercise that Cecilia has been demonstrating seems not a little unhinged, and as the recording…

The Black Cat

The Black Cat (1934)

The Black Cat first published by Little White Lies, as entry 125 in my Cinema Psychotronicum column Central to Edgar G. Ulmer‘s The Black Cat is a house built over an ancient graveyard. It is a classic gothic set-up, yet the house, far from conforming to the usual stones, firebrands and cobwebs of Universal Pictures’…

De Kuthoer

The Columnist (De Kuthoer) (2019)

The Columnist (De Kuthoer) first published by Little White Lies “If people don’t agree with me, they’re allowed to be angry, they’re allowed to curse me, fight against me, with every argument they can come up with. But they aren’t allowed to silence me.” Anna Boot (Claire Porro), a third year in high school, is…

Red Road

Red Road (2006)

Red Road first published by Film4 Summary: The first part of a loose Glasgow-set trilogy, Andrea Arnold’s feature debut is a psychosexual thriller about loss, lust, and the red red road to redemption. Review: Jackie (Kate Dickie) is a CCTV operator, watching remotely over a northern section of Glasgow, recording any trouble, and calling in the…

Run Hide Fight

Run Hide Fight (2020)

Run Hide Fight first published by VODzilla.co (in a slightly truncated version) Perhaps cinema’s first school shooting depicted was in Lindsay Anderson’s if…. (1968), whose antihero (Malcolm McDowell, in his on-screen debut) opens fire on fellow pupils, teachers, parents and visiting members of the establishment in a recalcitrant assault upon society’s stuffy status quo. On…