All posts by Mark Cunliffe

Letter to Brezhnev

Call me a sentimental old northerner, but the opening to Letter to Brezhnev remains one of my favourite moments of celluloid. Whilst budgetary constraints mean that it may not be as epic as it clearly wants to be, it nevertheless understands that Liverpool is a

Lost In France

The music industry is full of holy grail moments. A significant, chance meeting that launches a band that goes on to change the world, a landmark album, a legendary gig or the promise of what might have been.  It doesn’t matter what band, singer or

Pick of the Geek – I Know You Know

Set in South Wales in 1989, I Know You Know tells the story of single parent father Charlie Callaghan (Robert Carlyle) and his eleven-year-old son Jamie (newcomer Arron Fuller). Written and directed by Human Traffic’s Justin Kerrigan, what is remarkable about this film is that

Alice Doesn’t Live Here Anymore

Ellen Burstyn was riding high off the back of The Exorcist and looking for a prospective project to make with Warner Brothers when Robert Getchell’s script for what was to become Alice Doesn’t Live Here Anymore fell into her lap. It was the early 1970s

Who’s That Knocking At My Door

Who’s That Knocking At My Door, Martin Scorsese’s black and white debut feature film from 1968, originally started out life as his NYU graduation project some three years earlier. Aged just 23, armed with a miniscule budget and relying on numerous favours, Scorsese took to

Through the Wall

“I have a hall. I have a dress. The apartment is almost ready. It’s a small task for God to find me a groom by the end of Hanukkah” So says Michal, the kooky heroine of writer/director Rama Burshtein’s Through the Wall (alternatively known as

The Olive Tree

The Olive Tree (or El Olivo as it’s known in its native Spanish) is director Icíar Bollaín’s third collaboration with the writer and long-term screenwriting partner of Ken Loach, Paul Laverty. It is an aesthetically beautiful, heartfelt and spiritual film that explores the notions of

The Unknown Girl

The Unknown Girl is the latest film from the Belgian Dardenne brothers, those purveyors of social realism who achieved critical and commercial acclaim most recently for their 2014 film Two Days, One Night, which starred Marion Cotillard as Sandra, a young woman who, following an

I Am Not a Serial Killer

Based on a 2009 ‘Young Adult’ novel by Dan Wells (the first in a trilogy I believe) I Am Not a Serial Killer is a British/Irish co-production set and shot in the chilly Midwestern state of Minnesota. It is directed by Billy O’Brien and stars