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A mockumentary, a combination of the words “mock” and “documentary”, is a film (or television show) in which is certain subject is spoofed by relaying fictional events in a documentary-like manner as if they are real. The subject of the mockumentary is thereby parodied, although often the very form of documentaries themselves is also spoofed in the process. They often… Read more »

14 August 2014 | Features, Film Lists

The musical genre has been one of the most successful film genres in the history of cinema. The genre has been around since the early 1920s. Once silent pictures started to fade away and talkies began to take over Hollywood, it was only natural that music and film would be blended as one. In 1927, Warner Bros. released Alan Crosland’s… Read more »

14 August 2014 | Features, Film Lists

Like countless others across the world, I was shocked and saddened to hear of the passing of Robin Williams. To me, this man was an utter lightning bolt in human form. An insanely gifted comedian and actor, his light shone twice as bright as most of his contemporaries. Born in 1951, Williams was a star pupil at the Juliard School… Read more »

13 August 2014 | Features, Film Lists

In Japanese cinema, often one comes across films that are incredibly difficult to categorize. Are they science fiction? Horror? Comedy? All of the above? A lot of the time, when one encounters this fascinating area of Japanese cult films, the answer is yes. For the amateur cinephile and aficionado alike, it is exactly that hard-to-pin-down, out-of-the-ordinary quality that drew them… Read more »

12 August 2014 | Features, Film Lists

“Everything is blooming most recklessly; if it were voices instead of colors, there would be an unbelievable shrieking into the heart of the night.” The poet Rainer Maria Rilke, long known as a voice of the most ineffable of human solitudes and longing, has much to offer in ways of understanding the work of Hong Kong auteur Wong Kar-wai. Rilke,… Read more »

12 August 2014 | Features, Film Lists

For every motion picture that graces our screens, there are untold numbers of projects that have never seen the light of day. Some scripts and concepts die quietly, unable to arouse the interest enough investors to become reality. Others sound like a dream on paper, but for one reason or several, never come to fruition. Others still get midway through… Read more »

11 August 2014 | Features, Film Lists

Distinguished by his incredibly intense, emotional style and powerhouse acting, Leonardo DiCaprio is one of the best actors of his generation. He has been in more great films than any other actor his age, which is clearly reflected in his filmography that boasts plenty of classic films and iconic roles. His characterized niche is searching, finding, and achieving exceptionally challenging… Read more »

10 August 2014 | Features, Film Lists

During the silent era, where segregation was prominent, a small circuit of theaters for African Americans developed. The reason behind this was the multiple protests held by African Americans who wanted better representation in the motion picture industry. These uprisings were in part inspired by the controversial film The Birth of a Nation (1915), which featured the Ku Klux Klan… Read more »

10 August 2014 | Features, Film Lists

Troma Entertainment has been synonymous with violent exploitation comedies for nearly 40 years with little sign of stopping. Most recently, the studio released “Return to Nuke ‘Em High Volume 1” which received some of their best reviews in years. Troma isn’t for everyone, but the company champions low-budget filmmaking and the belief that anyone can make a movie. Much like… Read more »

09 August 2014 | Features, Other Lists

Studies show that half of all film school graduates are women, yet only 5% of them are working Hollywood directors. This is not only a problem in Hollywood, but everywhere in the world. There’s prejudice and difficulties akin to them, common stories of declined financing help and even production interruptions due to certain chosen themes and subjects in their work…. Read more »

09 August 2014 | Features, Film Lists

Abbas Kiarostami is a familiar name to many people around the world. Since countless internet sites about him exist. He is considered by many as one of the best filmmakers of cinema. The filmmaker is a source of pride, because through his films, Kiarostami manages to present a new, refreshing image of Iran, a poetic outlook one can’t find in… Read more »

09 August 2014 | Features, Film Lists

Filmmakers love to take inspiration from the Spaghetti Western. The genre, popular mainly from the late 1960s and the early 1970s, represented a decade’s worth of the most exuberant and stylized cinema. To this day, many filmmakers take stylistic cues from the genre’s many legendary moments. It was anchored in the idea of using the audiovisual experience unique to film… Read more »

08 August 2014 | Features, Film Lists

Michael Mann is someone whose films depict a certain level of realism, to some perhaps laborious, others necessary and then there’s the in between who go to see his films because of who is in them. Ultimately it is the director’s power to draw such big names, which could be seen to appeal to all three. He is also a… Read more »

08 August 2014 | Features, Film Lists

A director’s vision is often seen as the guiding light of a production, but that doesn’t mean said vision is absolute. Very few in the industry have risen to the level where they have the privilege of receiving the almighty power of “final cut”. Frequently, other parties will have a hand in shaping the final version of a film; sometimes… Read more »

07 August 2014 | Features, Film Lists

Cinema is made possible thanks to the contribution of thousands of artists with different backgrounds, thoughts and visions working together to bring life to an idea, even if it’s just for a moment. Like any artist, filmmakers tend to have ideas that they keep revisiting, consciously or not. This fixation can be anything: a characteristic style, a personal subject, a… Read more »

07 August 2014 | Features, People Lists

To take a form like nonfiction cinema — as vast as it is experimental and as controversial as it is misunderstood — and whittle it down to 20 essential titles, seems almost an impossible task. It’s best to view documentaries not only for how fascinating a subject they depict or how uniquely they execute a vision, but also for how… Read more »

06 August 2014 | Features, Film Lists