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  • Sparrow

    Sparrow 2008

    Watched 26 May, 2015

    It's late (early really) and I don't have a lot to say about this other than I like it very much but here goes:

    Sparrow finds numerous ways to dramatise sleight of hand - mostly be focusing on the sound and texture of the environments in which the pickpockets work. Oftentimes the snatches seem to be less about clever men and more about the environments they work in: the pop of a juice box under tires, the sheen of a…

  • The Knack... and How to Get It

    The Knack... and How to Get It 1965

    Watched 24 May, 2015

    The Knack steals from everything: There's an impressionistic scene in which Colin's desire to look and is disgust at himself for looking is conveyed through him seeing himself amongst a crowd of lechers; there's a scene that seems directly inspired by Soviet montage in which Colin's state of excited distress is conveyed through a shot of him running out of the house that is repeated three times; and there's a scene with freeze frames might have been inspired by Truffaut.…

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  • Birdman

    Birdman 2014

    Watched 10 Jan, 2015

    Birdman is so in your face that it makes a motif out of characters speaking directly to the camera. It's a manic, propulsive, eager little thing driven by a relentless drum score, a swooping camera and restless actors who talk as though they could burst into flames at any moment. It's populated by caricatures and filled with the kind of passionate nonsense that regularly fills columns exclaiming that Hollywood has run out of ideas, or that theater is a dying…

  • When Animals Dream

    When Animals Dream 2014

    Watched 08 Jan, 2015

    There's a long history of feminist werewolf stories and it's easy to see why: Aside from the terror of big, nasty dogs the horror of the werewolf lies in a loss of control over one's own body. When Animals Dream gets great of mileage out of this subtext. Before the protagonist, Marie, has even begun to wolf out she's subjected to an intrusive doctor's examination and the unwanted attentions of a local boy.

    By the time she's asserting pride in…