Crimson staff writer
Lanz Aaron G. Tan
It’s eccentric with a capital “E” and a complete tonal mishmash that shouldn’t work on a conceptual level, but director Azazel Jacobs’ absurdist satire “French Exit” salvages a vibrant, beating heart from the unlikeliest of places.
It’s not as euphoric as “Lovers Rock” or as exciting as “Mangrove,” but director Steve McQueen's “Red, White and Blue” is a cogent, politically charged meditation on structural racism.
Olaizola’s film is supposed to be an otherworldly experience — a fever dream fraught with woozy visions of unexplained horrors and carnal desires. But “Tragic Jungle” is neither evocative nor frightening; in fact, it’s rather bland.
Instead, acclaimed South Korean filmmaker Hong Sang-soo (credited here with the Herculean task of serving as writer, director, producer, editor, and composer) creates a film that, while far from a clear read, uses well composed cinematography and earnest character conversations to push multiple thematic interpretations.
In his latest film, the documentary “Swimming Out Till the Sea Turns Blue,” famed Chinese director Jia Zhang-Ke (“Still Life” and “Ash is Purest White”) stitches together multiple accounts of the transformation of day-to-day life in the face of the Cultural Revolution from 1966-1976.
“The Truffle Hunters” is a film about how elite sellers have managed to prop up a multi-million dollar industry that sells exclusively to the world’s crème de la crème by exploiting small town elderly truffle hunters in the Northern Italian countryside.
While “Beginning” hardly treads new thematic ground, it is remarkable in how it conveys them; by leaving the camera as a stubbornly static participant, "Beginning" matches the entrapment of its central character with the entrapment of what viewers see on screen.
Academy Award winning writer-director Sofia Coppola makes an intriguing change of pace with her latest film, “On the Rocks,” which feels more like one of Woody Allen’s detective-rom-com hybrids from the ’80s and ’90s than it does "The Virgin Suicides" or "Lost in Translation."
In just her third film, Zhao tackles bold themes as she delivers a visually stunning and carefully written film that illuminates the lives disenfranchised by a society which too often prioritizes capitalistic wealth over human wellbeing.