Evil Dead Rise

Evil Dead Rise (2023)

Evil Dead Rise first published (in a slightly different version) by Sight and Sound, 18 April 2023 Review: From the initial twisting POV shot that races along a creek through woods to a lake, and across its surface right up to Teresa (Mirabai Pease) on the pier, we are clearly in Evil Dead land. This,…

The Middle Man

The Middle Man (2021)

The Middle Man first published by Sight and Sound, April 2023 Review: Adapted by its director Bent Hamer from Lars Saabye Christensen’s 2012 novel Sluk, The Middle Man is set during the Trump Presidency in the fictional Midwest town of Karmack – a once flourishing community which has of late suffered severe economic depression, and…

Perpetrator

Perpetrator (2023)

Perpetrator first published by Sight and Sound, 17 Feb 2023, timed with its world première at the Berlinale “Jesus, girls go missing all the time,” says high-school senior Avalon (Ilirinda Memedovski) some way into Perpetrator, barely convincing even herself of her lack of empathy. “I mean, what’s the big deal?” Jennifer Reeder is a chronicler…

Just Wright

Just Wright (2010)

Just Wright first published by Sight & Sound, November 2010 Review: Down-to-earth New Jersey physiotherapist Leslie Wright (Queen Latifah) meets gentlemanly New York basketball superstar Scott McKnight (Common), but his eye is on Leslie’s rapacious best friend Morgan (Paula Patton). When Scott is seriously injured, Leslie moves in – but can she mend Scott’s knee and win…

The Illusionist

The Illusionist (L’Illusionniste) (2010)

The Illusionist (L’Illusionniste) first published by Sight & Sound, September 2010 Review: Revered French filmmaker/comic Jacques Tati died, aged 75, in 1982, the same year that Sylvain Chomet finished high school – and yet there is a love for Tati in the animator’s work that transcends their generational differences, and even time itself. Chomet’s first…

Journey to Mecca

Journey to Mecca (2009)

Journey to Mecca first published by Sight & Sound, July 2010 Review: Ibn Battuta was a fourteenth-century Berber Muslim whose 29 years of travelling, recorded subsequently in the celebrated Rihla, took him some 75,000 miles through the Eastern Hemisphere – three times further than his near contemporary Marco Polo. Bruce Neibaur’s dramatised docu-odyssey Journey to Mecca,…

Lymelife

Lymelife (2008)

Lymelife first published by Sight & Sound, July 2010 Review: “This feels like a perpetual acid trip.” It is the late 1970s, and dazed, hopeless Charlie Bragg (Timothy Hutton) is trying to describe the bewildering effects of Lyme disease to his 15-year-old neighbour Scott Bartlett (Rory Culkin). Scott has never ingested LSD (although he will…

Shelter

Shelter (aka 6 Souls) (2010)

Shelter first published by Sight & Sound, June 2010 Review: “Isn’t it possible that what you’re looking at is what you’re actually seeing?” With this line, delivered by open-minded but faithless psychiatrist Dr Harding (Jeffrey DeMunn) to his more doctrinaire psychiatrist daughter Dr Cara Jessup (Julianne Moore), Shelter (aka 6 Souls) sets out its reflexive stall….

The Disappearance of Alice Creed

The Disappearance of Alice Creed (2009)

The Disappearance of Alice Creed first published by Sight & Sound, May 2010 Review: “You’re thinking too much”, Vic (Eddie Marsan) tells his much younger parter in crime Danny (Martin Compston) near the start of The Disappearance of Alice Creed. “Don’t think.” These are wise words of advice to anyone trying to navigate their way…