All posts by Graham Williamson

Pick of the Geek – The Psychopath Test

For Jon Ronson, journalism is about offering a fair hearing to people who might not otherwise get, or even deserve, it. Over the course of his eight books he’s done this to Ku Klux Klansmen, anthrax hoaxers, cult leaders, paedophiles and people who tweeted insensitive

The Swinging Cheerleaders

1974’s The Swinging Cheerleaders, reissued on Blu-Ray by Arrow Home Video, has a script credited to Jane Witherspoon and Betty Conklin. In the same year, Conklin was also responsible for the screenplay for Act of Vengeance, a female revenge picture also released under the impeccably

Pick of the Geek – Crash

David Cronenberg’s 1996 adaptation of J.G. Ballard’s novel – a book that was once rejected for publication with the note “This author is beyond psychiatric help” – was hugely controversial on release, banned in several London boroughs and subject to a protracted hate campaign from

Pick of the Geek – The Book of Sand

Today, everything in art is about size: binge-watched TV, enormous novels, three-hour superhero movies, massive public sculptures. For the antidote to all this, you can’t do better than turn to Jorge Luis Borges, the Argentinian author whose stories are incredibly short, yet each of his

Joshua Oppenheimer: Early Work

For most filmgoers, Joshua Oppenheimer emerged fully-formed out of nowhere with his landmark 2012 documentary The Act of Killing. A horrifyingly intimate portrait of elderly death squad leaders in Indonesia, it fused fearless journalism with surreal, fantastical black comedy – a mix which earned the

Ivan’s Childhood

Film history tends to invite less counterfactual speculation than military or political history, but here’s one for you: what if Ivan’s Childhood, now reissued by Curzon Artificial Eye, had never been made? Because that really did come close to happening. During production, source author Vladimir

Richard III

Ever since the Golden Age of Hollywood, Shakespeare adaptations have struggled to win a box-office take to match their prestige.  The shining exception to the rule came during the 1990s, a period in which the Bard was so bankable that by the end of the decade Julie

The Club

Whatever he did for his fourth film, Pablo Larraín must have known he needed to make a sharp turn.  His first three films form such a comprehensive trilogy on life under Pinochet’s dictatorship that anything more would have risked tilling over old ground.  His debut, Tony