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There are film directors, there are great film directors and then there is Sir David Lean. More than any director, his career helped to define and propel cinema throughout the 20th Century. Like James Cameron today, David Lean showed the world with each new film what other filmmakers could only imagine – he took audiences to places outside the realm… Read more »

26 August 2014 | Features, Film Lists

Beginning centuries ago with the writings and exploits of the Marquis de Sade, France has had a long and unique love affair with horror. Drawing influences from years of surrealist paintings and deviant literature and influenced by the brutality of modern American horror films, a pack of new filmmakers has made themselves known with a new generation of definitively French… Read more »

24 August 2014 | Features, Film Lists

Iconoclast. Hellraiser. Lunatic. These adjectives and more can be used to describe the one and only Dennis Hopper (1937-2010). A true all-rounder, he was not only an actor, but a writer, director, artist and photographer. His was a truly unique life, at times incredibly fraught and self-destructive. Stories of his alcohol and drug abuse are legendary. Like Keith Richards, he… Read more »

24 August 2014 | Features, Film Lists

A debut feature can add a lot of pressure to up-and-coming directors, who not only have to navigate the treacherous waters of the entertainment industry, but must also capture an audience’s attention (although some directors are more interested in creating displeasure rather than pleasure). A successful debut feature can open doors for new directors, helping them to begin illustrious careers… Read more »

23 August 2014 | Features, Film Lists

Comedian, actor, writer, director Mike Nichols is truly a man of many talents. In regards to his career in cinema, with the odd exception here and there (1986’s “Heartburn” springs to mind), he is a director that you can on the whole trust to provide entertaining and, in some cases, enlightening cinema. Born in 1931, Nichols made his name on… Read more »

23 August 2014 | Features, Film Lists

Federico Fellini ranks amongst the filmmakers held in the highest of regards within the world of cinema. So much so, that adjectives like “Fellinian” and “Fellinieque” have been devised to describe certain characteristics closely associated with the Italian master, both in cinema as well as in art in general. He has won five Academy Awards throughout his career and holds… Read more »

22 August 2014 | Features, Film Lists

The Greeks are renowned for influencing Western Civilization in every aspect of politics, philosophy, art, literature, and theatre. After many centuries, Greece is back to creating classics—this time through film. Although over these years, many components of Greek cinema has changed, one fact remains the same: the unique charm of Grecian movies. The emergence of the Grecian financial crisis has… Read more »

22 August 2014 | Features, Film Lists

Actors and actresses come and go. Some make an impression. Some do not. In relation to the machine that is Hollywood, this is the nature of the beast, the whole ethos of ‘this year’s model’ and all that. Totally flying in the face of that attitude and philosophy, there is and will ever be only one Jack Nicholson. Born in… Read more »

21 August 2014 | Features, Film Lists

The Seventies were a golden age for American Cinema. Directors such as Francis Ford Coppola, Martin Scorsese, Steven Spielberg and George Lucas really changed the game with regards to how films were made and how audiences ‘watched’ cinema. Amongst those greats was one particular director who was incredibly prolific and, more often than not, hit the target continually in that… Read more »

21 August 2014 | Features, Film Lists

With a few notable exceptions, such as Walt Disney, The Termite Terrace from Warner Bros., Tex Avery and the duo of Joseph Hanna and Joe Barbera, animation has historically been an art with very little respect from the audience to its creators. Seen for many decades as mere children’s entertainment, animators from around the world and from very different trends… Read more »

21 August 2014 | Features, People Lists

Stanley Kubrick’s strong persona and confident directing style was so impressive and functional he carefully managed to transcend the limitations of the studio system and delivered most of his cinematic propositions just the way he meant do to them. Throughout his filmography, he had a few setbacks, the most famous being the unrealized biopic of Napoleon, but consistently succeeded in… Read more »

20 August 2014 | Features, Film Lists

When Roman Polanski’s first American film, Rosemary’s Baby, made its way onto the silver screen in 1968, the country itself was in a mass of political and social turmoil. This era of unrest did not exclude Hollywood. Driven by the growing youth counterculture that made a calling card out of outspoken defiance of the order and reason of the previous… Read more »

20 August 2014 | Features, Reviews

There was an excellent documentary a few years ago about Australian cinema called “Not Quite Hollywood”. Directed by Mark Hartley, what made this doco unique is that it didn’t address the ‘new wave’ of Australian cinema that included films such as “Picnic At Hanging Rock” and “My Brilliant Career”. It did something wildly different. “Not Quite Hollywood” looked at what… Read more »

19 August 2014 | Features, Film Lists

When the 1940s and World War II ended, Europe began to go through a regeneration—not just through its landscapes and cities, but via cinema, and the films produced throughout the continent. As the 1950s thrived, the world watched a transformed Europe where “New Wave” had begun in France, Germany, Czechoslovakia, and—in this case—Britain. Out of these New Wave movements, however,… Read more »

19 August 2014 | Features, Film Lists

What is it with cinephiles and independent cinema? A quick look at any respected critics best of the year list or, indeed, participation in conversation with any good film buff will quickly lead one to realise that indie films are generally more favoured and acclaimed than blockbusters. Why? Because, generally, they are made without the financial expectations if a big… Read more »

18 August 2014 | Features, Film Lists

Master of visual storytelling, Wes Anderson is an American film director and screenwriter whose films are known for his unique artistic sensibilities. The geometric concept, meticulous color schemes, quirky characters and dialogue, dead-pan comedy and camera movements are basic elements to help the audience recognize any Anderson film. There are other elements worth mentioning that bring attention to his work… Read more »

18 August 2014 | Features, Other Lists

Every profound story contains an effective back story, and Stephen King’s narratives are exceptional. The prolific “master storyteller” provides just enough information to allow the readers to sink their teeth into the scenario. Though many literary scholars may disagree, King is comparable to nineteenth existentialists such Fyodor Dostoevsky or Franz Kafka, and is aptly admired by countless adorned fans because… Read more »

17 August 2014 | Features, Film Lists

At this time more so than any other in film history, it is easy to be overwhelmed with film viewing choices. With the flood of new releases available to audiences in both cinemas and especially at home, it is now easier than ever for excellent horror, crime and suspense thriller films to slip through the cracks. The 16 films discussed… Read more »

16 August 2014 | Features, Film Lists

For over five decades, no other filmmaker has shaped the history of film and film craft as Francis Ford Coppola. Hardly any other career has been traversed in such a unique way from glorious, commercial success to financial disasters. After several years of working with major studio systems, Coppola stepped into the independent film business and founded the movie studio American Zoetrope… Read more »

16 August 2014 | Features, Film Lists