The House That Jack Built – VIFF 2018 Review

At this stage in his prolific and subversive filmmaking career, confrontational provocateur Lars von Trier’s brand is essentially one of polarization. Antichrist (2009) and Nymphomaniac (2013) are two of the Dane’s most recent examples of artful, dark, and indulgent films that managed to cut crowds right down the middle, and with von Trier’s latest detour […]

Climax – VIFF 2018 Review

Argentinian enfant terrible filmmaker Gaspar Noé (Enter the Void [2009]) may now at long last finally have his masterpiece with Climax, an unimaginably beautiful nightmare mixture of ecstatic dance and horror most extreme. An absolutely mindblowing, and occasionally frustrating experience––this is Noé after all, the New French Extremity provocateur behind such tortuous endurance tests as […]

Under the Silver Lake – VIFF 2018 Review

“It’s silly wasting time on something that doesn’t matter,” says a dreamy young woman with a fondness for balloons (Grace Van Patten) to an embittered and unemployed young man turned would-be detective named Sam (Andrew Garfield) in writer-director David Robert Mitchell’s surreal new film, Under the Silver Lake. It’s one of those almost throwaway lines […]

Sicilian Ghost Story – VIFF 2018 Review

Newcomer Julia Jedlikowska wonderfully portrays the naive, tender, and somewhat somnambulistic teen Luna, who pines for and later will try to extricate her dreamy classmate Giuseppe (Gaetano Fernandez, also making his screen debut), in Italian directors Fabio Grassadonia and Antonio Piazza’s haunting, rhythmic and slowburning new movie, Sicilian Ghost Story. Early on in this hard-hearted […]

The Sisters Brothers – VIFF 2018 Review

French filmmaker Jacques Audiard (2009’s A Prophet, 2015’s Dheepan) may not seem the obvious choice to make the big screen adaptation of Patrick deWitt’s beloved, prize-winning 2011 historical novel about a pair bickering siblings who earn a living as hitmen in the Wild West of the 1850’s. In fact, reading deWitt’s “The Sisters Brothers”, with […]