Girlhood: The Changing Face Of French Cinema – An interview with Céline Sciamma and Karidja Touré

By Miranda Schiller @mirandadadada Karidja Touré, the celebrated star of Céline Sciamma's Girlhood, looks small in the big hotel room armchair where she sits doing back-to-back interviews all day. She looks small, but not lost. She is visibly really enjoying this, soaking in every minute of this new part of her life, being an actress. She was literally cast off the street for Girlhood, but she did secretly always dream of being an actress. Karidja explained: “Sometimes when people ask...

Timbuktu – Film Review

Miranda Schiller @mirandadadada Abderramahne Sissako revisits the country of his childhood, Mali, in his powerful outcry of a film. Timbuktu and the surrounding desert region were under jihadist control for about a year from 2012 to 2013. The new leaders, for the most part coming from different countries, ride around town on motorbikes and in jeeps, announcing their laws with megaphones. Football and music is forbidden, women must cover up and wear gloves, it is forbidden to smoke, to sit...

Girlhood – Film Review

by Miranda Schiller @mirandadadada Girlhood is the story of Marième's journey from obedient child to defiant girl gang member to young adult fending for herself. It is a story of black female teenagers in the suburbs of Paris. It is a story of female friendship. It is a story of strength, of finding your way out. Marième grows up with many restrictions. Her mother is mostly at work, leaving her to look after her two younger sisters. Her older brother...

Exit – Film Review

By Miranda Schiller @mirandadadada  The title is misleading. There is no exit for Ling, a lonely, middle-aged woman whom this film follows around her incredibly depressing day-to-day life. Since she rarely speaks to anyone, there is hardly any dialogue, and scenes of her trying to fix the peeling wallpaper of her flat with sello-tape, going to the toilet or staring into space are drawn out exactly as long as they take in real life, on a particularly listless day. Exit...

A Pigeon Sat On A Branch Reflecting On Existence – Film Review

By Stephen Mayne @finalreel Roy Andersson’s films are so uniquely his own it’s hard to reconcile them with the world around us. Yet were anyone to venture into the idiosyncratic Swedish director’s head, I strongly suspect they would reveal themselves as a weirdly precise form of documentary filmmaking. A Pigeon Sat on a Branch Reflecting on Existence, the third in his loosely connected “living” trilogy, resembles a world watched from afar by a viewer not completely familiar with the ways...

The Emperor’s New Clothes – Film Review

By Dr Katy Shaw ‘There is nothing in this film you don’t already know’ declares Russell Brand in the opening scene of Michael Winterbottom’s new movie about the 2007-8 financial crisis Emperor’s New Clothes. A joint project between heavy-weights of the directing and comedy worlds, the movie’s main focus is the financial crash of 2007-8 and its consequences, from bankers’ bonuses at HSBC and Citibank, to the Occupy movement, corporate tax-dodging by Vodaphone and Apple, the privatisation of housing and zero hours contracts....

Stones For The Rampart – Film Review/Interview with Director Robert Glinski

By Miranda Schiller @mirandadadada Zoska is a boyscout, part of Szare Szeregi (the Grey Ranks), a scouting organisation fighting against the Nazi occupation in Warsaw. They mainly do acts of so-called “minor sabotage”, like tearing down a Nazi flag from a public building. With sharp editing and an upbeat electronic rock sound, these scenes evoke classic coming-of-age film boy pranks. But this is quickly contrasted by showing the real danger of these acts. Even tearing down a flag could cost...

Force Majeure – Film Review

By Stephen Mayne @finalreel What happens when you discover you’re not who you’re meant to be? In that fine Scandinavian tradition, Force Majeure ruthlessly picks apart familial relationships by teasing out a thread and pulling until everything unravels. That it’s done against a beautifully rendered postcard setting and with a wicked streak of dark humour is all to director/writer Ruben Östlund’s credit. The cinema of our northern European friends is particularly good at finding emotional weak points and exploiting them...

Listen Up Philip : Film Review

By Emma Silverthorn @HouseOf_Gazelle On paper the trajectory of novelist Phillip’s career is every writers dream. With the publication of his second book Philip (Jason Schwartzman) is put on The New Yorker’s five under thirty five list, is taken under the wing of his literary idol Ike Zimmerman (Jonathan Pryce) and is offered unlimited residence at Zimmerman’s summerhouse retreat. The films premise lying in Philip’s strong desire to eschew toxic, urban life in order to find creative solitude and peace...

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