Horror, westerns science fiction, crime, magic, demons, vampires, zombies, witches, a one-legged detective, people trapped in a deadly house, a damsel in distress and a film editor driven mad by cheap exploitation movies …
Three movies from producer-director Stanley Kramer, spread across two decades, highlight his liberal sensibilities … and expose the limits of that liberalism in the face of a messy world.
A random selection of recent viewing, from Nazi propaganda to British Angry Young Men, from classic sci-fi to the 1960s revival of a French criminal mastermind as slapstick pastiche.
Following the surprise international success of Gregory’s Girl (1980), writer-director Bill Forsyth was given greater resources by producer David Puttnam and made what on the surface was a whimsical comedy reminiscent of Ealing Studios in the ’50s; three-and-a-half decades later, the delightfully charming Local Hero (1983) can be seen as a subtly prescient warning about the most urgently pressing issues we now face – climate change and the need to find sustainable ways to inhabit the planet.
Criterion’s Blu-ray release of Ernst Lubitsch’s final completed feature, Cluny Brown (1946), presents this richly layered comic gem in a luminous 4K restoration. This underrated romantic comedy which skewers rigid British class attitudes on the eve of World War Two is one of Lubitsch’s masterpieces.
Two modest documentaries delve into the compulsion to create and the fraught relationship between creator and creation.
Indicator’s third box set of Hammer movies highlights some interesting issues about the treatment of race in popular culture.
This week, I revisited several classic horror and sci-fi movies, plus a few more recent exploitation movies.
Three Blu-rays from Twilight Time span the espionage genre from World War Two to the fall of Communism in the late 1980s, each mixing personal drama with larger political issues in their own distinct ways.
Criterion once again showcases the prodigious talent of French writer and filmmaker Marcel Pagnol with their Blu-ray release of The Baker’s Wife (1938), considered to be his best film.