tue 19/11/2019

Film Reviews

Haley Fohr: Salomé, Brighton Festival 2019 review – potently camp debauch

Nick Hasted

Haley Fohr’s disquiet at the “wildly outmoded” sexual politics of this notorious 1923 Wilde adaptation led her to cut its intertitles, relying only on sometimes delirious imagery and her throbbing live score.

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Cannes 2019: Matthias & Maxime review - a gently charming new drama

Joseph Walsh

It has been ten years since Canadian auteur Xavier Dolan first debuted I Killed My Mother at the Cannes Film Festival.

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Too Late To Die Young review - an absorbing, Chilean coming-of-age

Demetrios Matheou

Chilean Dominga Sotomayor’s third feature is a beautifully crafted example of the kind of Latin drama that is slow-burn and sensorial, conveying emotion through gestures and looks rather than dialogue or action. Nothing much seems to be happening, but before you know it you’ve been completed sucked in.  

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Cannes 2019: Parasite review - hilarious and horrifying

Joseph Walsh

Like Snowpiercer before it, Bong Joon-ho’s rage-fuelled satire Parasite puts class inequality squarely in its sights.

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Cannes 2019: Once Upon a Time... In Hollywood review - sun-soaked black comedy

Joseph Walsh

Moments before Quentin Tarantino’s blistering, outrageous work screened at Cannes, a message was delivered on behalf of the director, asking reviewers to avoid spoilers. It’s easy to see why. There’s a lot of pleasure in the film’s initial shock value, So yes, let’s avoid spoilers. But the surprises aren’t what make this film so good.

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John McEnroe: In the Realm of Perfection review - a fascinating oddity

Veronica Lee

Film buffs who are also tennis fans (there must be quite a few of us who fit in that particular Venn diagram) will love this quirky and experimental documentary by Julien Faraut, which uses archive footage and narration to examine the idea of a shared passion for cinema and sport, and how they may unite on film.

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Cannes 2019: Diego Maradona review - entertaining but skin-deep

Joseph Walsh

Director Asif Kapadia's documentary on the controversial 1980s sporting legend Diego Maradona premiered at Cannes this week, and there's something unsatisfying about the fact it doesn't have a one-word title.

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Cannes 2019: Too Old to Die Young - nightmarish LA noir

Joseph Walsh

This year, Cannes has been adamantly defending traditional cinema, with more than a few jibes at Netflix (who remain persona non grata at the festival), but that hasn’t stopped them screening two episodes of Nicolas Winding Refn’s new Amazon TV series, Too Old To Die Young.

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Last Stop Coney Island review - the life and photography of Harold Feinstein

Saskia Baron

This is a real passion project; British filmmaker Andy Dunn spent years building up a relationship with the late American photographer Harold Feinstein, filming him at work and interviewing friends, family and colleagues. The result is a loving portrait of a remarkable man.

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Cannes 2019: Pain and Glory review - a dour, semi-autobiographical portrait

Joseph Walsh

There’s a touch of Fellini’s 8 ½ in Pedro Almodóvar’s latest film. It’s a forlorn, confessional tale, with Antonio Banderas starring as Salvador Mallo, a director in the latter stages of his career.

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Tucked review - dispiriting British drag queen drama

Saskia Baron

It would be great to herald this low-budget drama about an elderly drag queen and his friendship with a young gay singer-songwriter as a little gem of British indie cinema.

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Birds of Passage review - mesmerising Colombian family saga

Markie Robson-Scott

“Do you know why I’m respected?” demands Ursula (Carmiña Martinez), a Wayuu matriarch in La Guajira in northern Colombia, of Rapayet (José Acosta), who wants to marry her daughter Zaida (Natalia Reyes, soon to star in James Cameron’s Terminator reboot). “Because I’m capable of anything for my family and my clan.”

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John Wick: Chapter 3 - Parabellum review - mayhem in Manhattan

Adam Sweeting

Keanu Reeves’s hitman franchise is blossoming into a delirious little earner.

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Beats review - Scottish boys seek rave

Graham Fuller

Achingly nostalgic for rave culture, Beats will likely appeal to anyone whose formative experience of ardent friendships and communal joy peaked in a transcendent musical setting with or without the help of Ecstasy.

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Diamantino review - loopy satire slaps Brexit

Graham Fuller

Imagine Cristiano Ronaldo, virtuosity intact, as buffed, blinged, and coiffed as ever, but with the sophistication and sexual maturity of an average seven-year-old, and you have a fair idea of Diamantino’s protagonist.

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The Hustle review - rotten scoundrels

Nick Hasted

This third version of Dirty Rotten Scoundrels yarn of rival, class-warring con artists on the French Riviera is just something for Anne Hathaway and Rebel Wilson to do till a better gig comes along....

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