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  • L'âge d'or

    L'âge d'or

    At its best when creating a dissonance between visual percepts and actualities, be it on a narrative level (when the male protagonist sees an ad on the wall and visualizes his lover; when the female protagonist sees the sky in her mirror) or on a meta-textual level (the ironic collision of Tchaikovsky and Wagner's compositions and Buñuel's dirty images). I must say that I find myself agreeing with Matsumoto's critique of Buñuel and other early Surrealist filmmakers (Cocteau, for instance),…

  • Your New Pig Is Down the Road

    Your New Pig Is Down the Road

    ★★★★

    Is it wrong of me to say that experimental animator Helen Hill's best film is the one without any animation? Perhaps it is my own minor bias against animation coming into play, but without a doubt, Your New Pig Is Down the Road is her most interesting and structurally curious effort, the one that most thoroughly investigates its own image.

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  • Silence

    Silence

    ★½

    If there's any one thing I truly hate about the West, it's how it always positions itself as the advocate of "free choice" in the face of a totalitarian Other. Countless times, this excuse has been used as a justification for overwhelmingly imperialist action, a sort of ideological bait-and-switch where "freedom" necessarily makes non-Western culture inferior and non-Westerners subordinate to the hegemony of the West.

    I might compare Silence to White Material, in the sense that both are essentially colonist…

  • Close-Up

    Close-Up

    ★★★★★

    Like Birth of a Nation or Breathless before it, Kiarostami's Close-Up is an easy film to take for granted, as the further we get from its original release, the less novel it may appear to be. However, it is also like those two films in that its significance in cinematic history cannot - and should not - be understated. Close-Up is one of the handful of films who have fundamentally reshaped our relationship to the medium. Its legacy is especially…