Browsing All Posts filed under »Cinema: Foreign«

On the 25th death anniversary of Kōbō Abe, a look at his most famous book-to-film, ‘Woman in the Dunes’

July 19, 2018


Read the full article on Firstpost, here: From the opening shot of Hiroshi Teshigahara’s Woman in the Dunes (1964), we know we’re in for something unusual, something special. Over the credits, we have already sensed some of this strangeness – atonal music, with percussion that sounds like knocks on a door (or the noise […]

On ‘King of Peking’, now on Netflix, and its director’s decision to find his audience online

July 12, 2018


Read the full article on Firstpost, here: A few readers asked if I could – at times – write about foreign films that are more easily available than something that plays at film festivals. One obvious solution is to look at streaming platforms, but the foreign films there are hard to find. Take Netflix. […]

With the ultra-success of ‘Sanju’, a look at biopics that were off the mainstream

July 4, 2018


Read the full article on Firstpost, here: With Sanju proving to be a monster crowd-pleaser, I thought I’d write about more eccentric biopics this week. Biography in cinema isn’t easy. A biographical book, like Irving Stone’s The Agony and the Ecstasy, chronicling the life of Michelangelo, lets us know how the protagonist really feels […]

In the last week of Pride month, a look at what defines gay cinema

June 25, 2018


Read the full article on Firstpost, here: On June 29, 1969, the New York Daily News, like many other newspapers, wrote about a “predawn police raid on a reputed Greenwich Village homosexual hangout, the second raid within a week, [which] touched off a two-hour melee yesterday as customers and villagers swarmed over the plainclothes […]

It’s not just ‘Race 3’, even the films of Renoir, Bergman, Fellini, et al have been thoroughly trashed

June 18, 2018


Read the full article on Firstpost, here: The release of Race 3 has unleashed a series of savage reviews – and deservedly so. There’s always the criticism that filmmaking is such a complex effort, involving so much Hard Work, and it’s unfair to dismiss all this in a snarky summation. But when so many […]

Baradwaj Rangan, let’s talk about bias!

June 14, 2018


Read the full article on Film Companion, here: Because it’s impossible to have a proper conversation on Twitter, I imagine a chat with critics of my ‘Kaala’ review and argue why form is important and why ‘Mani Ratnam’ isn’t a bad word. There may be spoilers ahead if you haven’t seen ‘Kaala’. So you’re […]

With the release of ‘Kaala’, here’s a quick tour of political cinema from around the world

June 11, 2018


Read the full article on Firstpost, here: The release of Pa Ranjith’s Kaala, starring Rajinikanth, has brought politics back into filmmaking. The film isn’t entirely successful, but its most incendiary passages made me wonder if there is another instance, anywhere in the world, of a famous star being used to convey the director’s ideology. […]

On mood-over-plot films like ‘The Wonders’ and female filmmakers like Alice Rohrwacher

June 4, 2018


Read the full article on Firstpost, here: <a href=” Alice Rohrwacher won the Best Screenplay award at Cannes, this year, for Lazzaro Felice (Happy as Lazaro). Her earlier feature, Le Meraviglie (The Wonders), won the Grand Prix at Cannes, in 2014. But she seems fairly unknown outside the hard-core cinephile crowd – which is what […]

Is the ‘golden age’ of international art-house cinema over?

May 29, 2018


Read the full article on Firstpost, here: I was watching a video on Facebook, about the arduous restoration of the Apu trilogy, and Peter Becker, President, The Criterion Collection, had this to say: “Ray is one of the essential figures in the golden age of international art-house cinema.” Is that right? Are we past […]

Readers Write In #41: A Commoner in Cannes

May 26, 2018


I have been going to film festivals here and there over the past few years. Devouring movies in jam-packed schedules – three a day on average, eight my highest – while cramming in dark halls with droves of people, scavenging on cheap fast food, sleeping on questionable beds, and almost always falling ill after is […]

From Hitchcock to Michelangelo Antonioni to Asghar Farhadi, similar plots work in different ways

May 21, 2018


Read the full article on Firstpost, here: A great film essay can really change the way you look at a movie, and I experienced this recently when I read Geoffrey Nowell-Smith’s (editor of The Oxford History of World Cinema; a co-editor of The British Film Institute, the Government and Film Culture, 1933– 2000) thoughts […]

Caught @ Cannes: Ceylan, Terry Gilliam’s ‘Don Quixote’ movie, closing ceremony notes

May 20, 2018


Read the full article on Film Companion, here: Sinan (Aydin Doğu Demirkol) — the protagonist of Nuri Bilge Ceylan’s Ahlat Agaci (The Wild Pear Tree; Turkish) — comes home after college. It’s a big thing in his smallish town. Sinan wants to be a writer, but he wants, even more, to escape these “narrow-minded people.” […]

Caught @ Cannes: Jafar Panahi, Ulrich Köhler, a ‘Kaaka Muttai’ from Lebanon  

May 19, 2018


Read the full article on Film Companion, here: From its opening scene of a girl’s (possible) suicide, Jafar Panahi’s Se Rokh (3 Faces, in Farsi and Azeri) is filled with women. A young girl named Marziyeh (Marziyeh Rezaei) wants to pursue acting, but her family won’t let her — hence this drastic step, which […]

Caught @ Cannes: Jia Zhang-Ke, Christophe Honoré, Kubrick’s ‘2001’

May 17, 2018


Read the full article on Film Companion, here: Jacques (Pierre Deladonchamps) is a writer — which means he’s also writerly. When on a call with Arthur (Vincent LaCoste), a man he likes but can’t quite commit to, he imagines Arthur is by his side — we see them both together, the way the scene […]

Truffaut/Hitchcock, and 50 years of ‘The Bride Wore Black’ (aka the ‘Kill Bill’ of its generation)

May 14, 2018


Read the full article on Firstpost, here: François Truffaut’s The Bride Wore Black, starring Jeanne Moreau, turned 50 this April. Today, the film better is known as the film Quentin Tarantino claimed not to have seen when he made his two Kill Bill movies, despite the absurd similarities in plot (a bride is widowed […]

Caught @ Cannes: Caught at Cannes: Orson Welles, Pawel Pawlikowski, an Arctic survival drama

May 13, 2018


Read the full article on Film Companion, here: It was a clash between Yomeddine, the Egyptian Competition entry about a man cured of leprosy, and The Eyes of Orson Welles, the latest documentary from Mark Cousins — and after a bit of conscience wrangling  (Am I avoiding potentially disturbing subject matter for something aesthetically… […]

Caught @ Cannes: Bollywood in Poland, Dhanush, troubles at the Russia-Ukraine border

May 11, 2018


Read the full article on Film Companion, here: On the shuttle from Nice airport to Cannes, the man seated next to me had his laptop open, and I caught sight of a couple of files on his desktop named “Dil Dhadakne Do” and “God Tussi Great Ho”. I thought they were music files, and […]

Caught @ Cannes: Asghar Farhadi, Cate Blanchett, and a kimono

May 9, 2018


Read the full article on Film Companion, here: The jury press conference got off to a dullish start when the president, Cate Blanchett, began to answer the question: “What is a good Palme d’Or?” She said it was all things — writing, performances, mise en scène. But when the question was passed around to […]

A journalist’s view of the Cannes Film Festival and its touching commitment to cinema

May 7, 2018


Read the full article on Firstpost, here: The Cannes Film Festival is a curious beast. There’s no doubt it’s more snobbish than, say, the Berlinale – but this aloofness is part of the attraction. The old Groucho Marx quip (later appropriated by Woody Allen in Annie Hall) comes to mind: “I don’t care to […]

The Taviani brothers, Pauline Kael, Mouna Raagam, and the persistence of movie memories

April 30, 2018


Read the full article on Firstpost, here: When Vittorio Taviani died, on April 15, there was no great swell of sorrow beyond the usual obituaries – and perhaps this isn’t much of a surprise. Some art film makers become brand names. I recall how the Internet exploded with tributes when Ingmar Bergman and Michelangelo […]