All posts by Graham Williamson

Separate Tables

One of the main extras on the BFI’s new dual format reissue of Separate Tables is an archive commentary by director Delbert Mann, who died in 2007. Mann is still probably best known for his Oscar-winning 1955 debut Marty, but he’d worked extensively in television

The Miraculous Virgin

Štefan Uher’s The Miraculous Virgin, released on Blu-Ray for the first time anywhere in the world by Second Run Films, is one of those 1960s Czechoslovak films that’s so freeform in its plotting, so rapturously visual, that it’s hard to imagine it having a script,

Under the Tree

Released in cinemas by Eureka Pictures, Hafsteinn Gunnar Sigurđsson’s Icelandic black comedy Under the Tree begins with an inspired contemporary take on an old joke. Atli, played by Steinthór Hróar Steinthórsson, is watching a sex tape of himself with his ex-girlfriend when his wife walks

F for Fake

“I started at the top”, Orson Welles quips in F for Fake, “and have been working my way down ever since”. After the great man’s death in 1985 Welles’s gag became something worryingly close to consensus. Obituary after obituary tutted about what a shame it was

Samuel Fuller, Screenwriter

There are two schools of thought on what makes a good box set. The first is what you might call the blockbuster principle: just assemble as impressive a collection of hits as you can. Certainly, that works – there’s a reason there are so many

Black Peter

Visiting the local co-op to see his sixteen-year-old son at work, a father barks angrily “That’s not working! That’s just standing and looking!” But there’s a value to standing and looking when you’re employed – as the boy, Petr, is – as a trainee store

Dark River

She’s got armfuls of good reviews and her films have opened at Cannes, but it still feels like people don’t recognise how good Clio Barnard is. Among her peers, Andrea Arnold is the heir apparent of social realist cinema, Ben Wheatley has the genre fans

Jubilee

And so time marches on, stopping only to produce ironies. Derek Jarman’s Jubilee, its very title a sarcastic reference to Queen Elizabeth II’s twenty-five years in office, is reissued by the BFI on dual format for its own ruby anniversary. The disc is released a

Mishima: A Life in Four Chapters

An extraordinary film even by the standards of Criterion’s UK catalogue, Paul Schrader’s Mishima: A Life in Four Chapters is your go-to film to counter accusations that biopics are inherently stuffy, stylistically conservative Oscar-bait. And it’s all thanks to Hank Williams. After surviving the excesses