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Spain has a variety of unique filmmakers, but very few have resonated as profusely in the international film market as Pedro Almodóvar has. With 19 films under his belt, as well as awards from Cannes, Venice, and the Oscars, Almodóvar has crafted a reputation that is evoked by his often-used tagline: “A film by Almodóvar.” His success is a result… Read more »

22 May 2014 | Features, Film Lists

It’s an actor’s job to occupy the body of another person. To become so emotionally connected to the character that they’re pretending to be, that it’s difficult to discern where they end and the character begins. It’s regular practice for some actors to insist that the cast and crew refer to them, on camera and off, not by their god given name, but by… Read more »

21 May 2014 | Features, People Lists

Camp, as Susan Sontag noted, is an aesthetic sensibility. It is more complex than a “subjective” look because it is a codified way of looking. It appreciates the artificiality of art, inverts the aesthetics of beauty, and strips the work of its political/social/cultural context. My adoration of camp is not something that I have learned, but something that I have… Read more »

20 May 2014 | Features, Film Lists

During the 90s, with the massification of the so-called post-modern cinema, filmmakers made constant references to their cinematic idols in their own films; suddenly you could see everything from simple homages to blatant copies of style and scene in almost all of the films created by certain directors. Some of these modern day directors went on to have very good… Read more »

20 May 2014 | Features, People Lists

With the inception of Gojira in 1954, the world was introduced to one of; If not the most iconic film monster of all time, and with that we were given a creature that represented the sheer terror and destruction of the god-like power put forth by the American atom bomb that leveled Hiroshima. Flash forward sixty years and upwards of… Read more »

19 May 2014 | Features, Other Lists

There’s no shortage of controversy in the world of cinema, from D. W. Griffith’s landmark 1915 film Birth of a Nation to this year’s Noah. Usually it’s clear ahead of time which films will ruffle the collective feathers. Focus on certain individuals and you can virtually be guaranteed to provoke controversy. Ditto for anything explicitly based on a true story… Read more »

18 May 2014 | Features, Film Lists

In 1954, a monster was released – a rather brilliant monster. Directed by Ishiro Honda, “Godzilla (1954)” proved a worthy film with critics and audiences alike. It was enormous, boasted outstanding special effects for its time, and most of all – it was terrifying. American audiences perhaps did not see the importance this monster held in Japan. They saw a… Read more »

18 May 2014 | Features, Reviews

Quentin Tarantino is one of the biggest names in Hollywood. He started off as an Indie darling and has risen through the upper echelon of the business where when he speaks (and he will, at great length), people listen. He’s gotten to the point where anything he touches can just about get greenlit, and has the ability to pick and… Read more »

17 May 2014 | Features, Other Lists

So, it should be no news to you that Zack Snyder has revealed The Batfleck in all of his muscle-bound glory by now, and regardless of what position you take on whether Ben Affleck will bomb or succeed under the cowl of The Dark Knight, one thing is perfectly clear: He looks freakin’ awesome. I’m a huge Batman fan, and… Read more »

17 May 2014 | Features, Other Lists

American cinema can roughly be divided in four major periods: the silent era, the classical Hollywood cinema or golden age of Hollywood, New Hollywood (also known as post-classical Hollywood or the Hollywood New Wave) and the contemporary modern “blockbuster” era. Of these periods New Hollywood is the shortest one, roughly spanning a decade, with its early beginnings in the late… Read more »

16 May 2014 | Features, Film Lists

France and the United States have always had an interesting history and relationship with each other, not only as countries, but also with film. There has always been kind of a fascinating back and forth between the two basically since the beginning of cinema (which, as a reminder, was actually created in France). If it weren’t for the First World… Read more »

15 May 2014 | Features, Film Lists

Billy Wilder was born in Austria in 1906 and after a brief career in Berlin as a journalist, he began to work as a scriptwriter in the active German film community of the 1920’s. As many others did, the Jewish Wilder emigrated to America in 1933 when Adolph Hitler came to power, and he arrived in Hollywood in 1934 unable… Read more »

15 May 2014 | Features, Film Lists

Editing is a selection process. Sometimes hundreds of hours of footage are captured, and we only end up seeing around two hours of it. It’s also a language that has rules. When done badly it can cause boredom or, even worse, confusion. The importance of editing cannot be underestimated. According to acclaimed film writers David Bordwell and Kristin Thompson, the… Read more »

14 May 2014 | Features, Other Lists

Austrian film director and screenwriter, Michael Haneke is one of Europe’s most prominent and controversial auteurs working today. He began his career in television and theatre and it wasn’t until late in his career at the age of 33 that he began working in film, with his 1989 cinematic debut Der siebente Kontinent [The Seventh Continent]. From then on his… Read more »

14 May 2014 | Features, Film Lists

Mario Bava (b. 1914—d. 1980) was an Italian filmmaker whose work has influenced that of Martin Scorsese, Quentin Tarantino, and Francis Ford Coppola, among a score of others. He’s also credited with indirectly spawning the slasher film craze of the ’80’s. Sort of a jack-of-all-trades in the Italian film industry, working as a cinematographer and special effects designer as well… Read more »

13 May 2014 | Features, Film Lists

Tim Burton has become the poster boy for all things gothic and weird in modern cinema. If one really looks into his body of work, there is a sort of formula within the majority of his films that he abides by, and it goes something like this: an oddball, misfit character is somehow thrown into new territory. This oddball, misfit… Read more »

12 May 2014 | Features, Film Lists