Tag Archives: Four Stars

SXSW Film Review: Boots Riley holds no punches in kafkaesque comedy Sorry to Bother You (USA, 2018)

Boots Riley has over two decades of powerful, biting and important work behind him as emcee of The Coup, so Sorry for Bothering You, his directorial debut, isn’t as big of a leap as it appears to be for the artist. Well, it’s not big in the sense that smart political satire is anything new for Boots, and there’s no doubt that his work with the seminal rap band has given him a unique approach to the film world. That approach is translated into this multifaceted comedy-drama which aggressively tugs on the threads of institutionalised racism, power structures and forced-labour and watches them all fall into a surreal, mind-warping dystopia of anthropomorphism, cocaine and orgies. It’s as weird and lovingly unique as it sounds.... Continue Reading

SXSW Film Review: Brothers’ Nest (Australia, 2018) is dark, twisted and completely unpredictable

If you thought the family in Animal Kingdom had problems, wait until you meet Australia’s newest dysfunctional family. In the new film from Director Clayton Jacobson, starring both himself and his brother Shane Jacobson, we spend some time getting to know the real life brothers as they play fictional brothers Jeff and Terry – reuniting the pair 11 years after their hit film Kenny.... Continue Reading

Film Review: Netflix’s Annihilation (USA, 2018) is a seriously intelligent, visually stunning picture

Rousing its fair share of controversy over Paramount Studios’ decision to release it to streaming service Netflix the world over (save for North America and China) instead of in cinemas for which it was initially intended, Alex Garland‘s ambitious Annihilation is certainly a unique production for such a risk-adverse studio.... Continue Reading

Alliance Francaise French Film Festival Review: Double Lover is a surreal, sensuous and salacious experience

There are two pleasures in life that without them, we living things would never exist: gastronomy and sexuality. And there are many talented people out there that try their best to portray their interest for it on many artistic endeavours, especially in cinema.... Continue Reading

Alliance Francaise French Film Festival Review: Ava takes the coming-of-age genre to heights of grittiness and surrealism

Coming-of-age films are really coming along nicely (I know, that was lame) over the past few years, with many great films that understand what makes the genre such a well-liked genre. We have plenty of stand-out entries like Kelly Fremon Craig‘s Edge of Seventeen, Greta Gerwig‘s Lady Bird and Marielle Heller‘s The Diary of a Teenage Girl.... Continue Reading

Film Review: Lady Bird (USA, 2017) is the most tender and genuine coming-of-age story in years

There’s something incredibly sweet about Lady Bird, without having the film push into over-sentimental territory. That in itself is a remarkable achievement for Greta Gerwig, who in her directorial debut has turned in an endearing and sincere coming-of-age story that, although quite monotone, springs to life with particularly powerful performances from two female actors of very different generations. As director and writer, Gerwig is at her observant best, penning what is seemingly a tender love letter addressed to both her parents and her hometown of Sacramento, but in doing so is careful to present characters which are complex and naturalistic enough so audiences around the world can find something they relate to, irrespective of gender.... Continue Reading

Film Review: Gurrumul (Australia, 2018) is a striking portrait of an enigmatic and impressive Australian musical talent

With Gurrumul, director Paul Damien Williams has created a striking and emotive portrait of one of Australia’s greatest musical talents – Geoffrey Gurrumul Yunupingu. But more than that, Gurrumul also affords us all a glimpse into the cultural life and traditions of the Yolngu people in North Eastern Arnhem Land, in what are some of the most visually striking moments of the film.... Continue Reading

Film Review: Molly’s Game (USA, 2017) is as sophisticated as it is entertaining

Known for his rapid-fire flair for dialogue, writer Aaron Sorkin proves ideally suited to tackling the true story of Molly Bloom.  Bloom, a former professional skier, earned her stripes working under one of the co-owners of the infamous Viper Room as she recruited high-profile talent to take part in secretive poker games in the club’s basement.... Continue Reading

Film Review: I, Tonya (USA, 2017) showcases Margot Robbie in the role of her career (so far)

To think that a notorious figure like Tonya Harding could be, in any way, made out to be sympathetic is no mean feat, yet screenwriter Steven Rogers, director Craig Gillespie, and star Margot Robbie (also serving as one of the film’s producers) have achieved just that in I, Tonya.... Continue Reading