Tag Archives: Hollywood

Tideland

Look up the word ‘Gilliamesque’ in the dictionary, and you’re likely to find the following descriptions of Terry Gilliam’s wild films. A strong sense of dark humour and visual comedy? Check. Dystopian futures? Double check. Striking fantasy sequences? Triple check. All of these traits are

The Awful Truth

It is almost inconceivable today that Academy voters would award an Oscar to the director of a light, farcical comedy. But in 1938, not only did Leo McCarey’s The Awful Truth get the trophy, it won at the expense of that year’s other McCarey effort,

The Old Dark House

During a particularly treacherous thunderstorm in rural Wales, a series of travellers are forced to seek refuge in an eerie and isolated house. Their hosts are an elderly eccentric pair of siblings and their mute brute of a butler. As the night unfolds, the stranded

Brik Wars: Gloriously Ridiculous Lego Battles

There are reasons I don’t tend to play war games, despite having an unhealthy appetite for moving little tanks and soldiers around a miniature world, cackling maniacally to myself while wearing a general’s hat. The main ones are the high entry cost, the assumption that

Agatha Christie: Nice Mysteries, Shame About the Prejudice

Agatha Christie has a certain reputation. If you’ve never read her books, you might associate her with twee, cozy, country mysteries featuring genteel and civilised murderers who delicately despatch their victims, perhaps a body in a library, the kind of coffee-table read favoured by older

The Apartment

In a 1995 interview packaged as part of Arrow Academy’s new restoration of The Apartment, Billy Wilder remembers a scene from David Lean’s Brief Encounter, a ‘black and white, very simple’ movie that he considers one of that director’s greatest. He and I have very

78/52: Hitchcock’s Shower Scene

Is there a scene more ingrained into the popular consciousness than the shower scene from Psycho? That question is answered by Documentarian Alexandre O. Philippe in his film 78/52. He applies a laser focus on those 78 setups and 52 cuts to discuss this watershed

Mulholland Drive

“Nah, you’re not thinkin’. You’re too busy being a smart-alec to be thinkin’” – The Cowboy If you’ve never seen David Lynch’s 2001 Cannes Best Director winner Mulholland Drive, it’s probably worth stopping reading and buying Studio Canal’s new Blu-Ray restoration right now. That’s normally

Why Modern Hollywood Hates Plot Twists

[WARNING: this article contains spoilers for Guardians of the Galaxy: Vol. 2, Captain America: The Winter Soldier, all three Iron Man films, most of the Christopher Nolan Batman films, and, y’know, everything else.] Sitting down to watch Park Chan-Wook’s The Handmaiden recently, I experienced a

Hollywood’s Greatest Underdog

The French film Elle, recently selected for the Best Foreign Language Film Oscar nomination, is soon to be released next month in America, bringing the name Verhoeven back into the limelight — although, perhaps not in the way that we might expect. Paul Verhoeven elicits controversy. His