Category Archives: Festivals

Sydney Film Festival Review: Okja (USA/Korea, 2017) delivers an exhilarating, heartfelt ride from a master filmmaker

Okja is a film involving a giant mutated pig. What more do you want? But seriously, in order to understand the hype of the film, you have to know the filmmaker Bong Joon-Ho.... Continue Reading

Sydney Film Festival Review: Song to Song (USA, 2017) is a soulless endurance test with no plot or point

A song is as song except when it’s a Terrence Malick film. The famous director’s latest experimental offering is an absolute waste in that it is all show and no substance. It weaves together cameos from famous A-list creatives and a cast of Hollywood’s finest actors and then it does nothing. Absolutely nothing. For 129 minutes. And not even in that funny Seinfeld brand of nothingness, because at least that sitcom was actually something.... Continue Reading

The Iris names the five best films of the 2017 Sydney Film Festival

The Sydney Film Festival has come to a close for another year – and with it come all the great memories of the films that surprised us, inspired us and left us wishing the event would never end. Alas, it has – but here are five films we’re taking away with us as the best of the festival.... Continue Reading

Sydney Film Festival Review: Final Portrait (UK/USA, 2017) can’t overcome its bland setting

Based on a memoir by American writer James Lord and adapted for the screen by actor Stanley Tucci, Final Portrait is a concise passion project with committed performances and evident production care that sadly doesn’t overcome its bland setting.... Continue Reading

Sydney Film Festival Review: The Young Karl Marx (France, 2017) is a safe bio-pic about the famous philosopher & socialist

The Young Karl Marx (Le jeune Karl Marx) is a bio-pic that feels authentic because it captures the period well in a visual sense. But you also get the feeling that it is only telling a part of the story and not least because it is all about Karl Marx’s youth. This dramatic film is ultimately a nicely-rendered but dry look at the famous revolutionary, which it paints in an overwhelmingly positive light.... Continue Reading

Sydney Film Festival Review: Phantom Boy (France, 2015) is oddly engaging and effortlessly weird

Whilst animation in film has evolved immensely over the last 20 years, there’s something immediately charming about Phantom Boy‘s deliberately flat and simple palleted aesthetic.  It may lack the emotional weight of the technically more refined Pixar offerings, but this film’s distinct look feels organically melded to its somber mentality.... Continue Reading

Sydney Film Festival Review: Call Me By Your Name (Italy/USA, 2017) is a near-flawless picture that celebrates the universality of love

Thoroughly engaging, immensely poignant, and remarkably evocative, Call Me By Your Name functions as both a coming-of-age tale and a love story, likely to surprise viewers as to where it travels on both accounts.... Continue Reading