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  • Battleship Potemkin

    Battleship Potemkin


    Three quick shots featuring three different marble statues of a lion gain new meaning when placed in continuity. First it’s shown sleeping, then awake and finally alert. Though multiple statues, shown in sequence, they register as one. The context is an attack by the Battleship Potemkin on the Czarist forces in Odessa in response to a brutal massacre of innocent civilians on the Russian city’s famous staircase in 1905. The lions represent an awakening of the revolutionary zeal. The shots…

  • Near Death

    Near Death


    So, who wants to see a six-hour documentary about end of life decisions in a hospital intensive care unit? I thought not. If I told you that Near Death is one of the most moving, intense and enlightening films I’ve ever seen, maybe just a few might reconsider, but not many. It might help to know that the filmmaker is Frederick Wiseman and those familiar with his other works may rightly assume that he brings the highest levels of observational…

Popular reviews

  • Vertigo



    How often have you heard a film described as “manipulative’ by way of criticism? I think what’s really meant by that is a failure to manipulate the viewer successfully, because its an apt description of what Alfred Hitchcock does in most of his best works and very particularly in Vertigo.

    Vertigo is a twist movie, but rather than the surprise being a clever function of plot or a cool reveal (though it’s that too), it is instead an admission that…

  • Star Wars

    Star Wars


    Star Wars was not the first movie I ever saw. If memory serves (and it probably doesn’t) it was possibly Snow White & the Seven Dwarves, Charlotte’s Web, Benji, Snoopy Come Home or some similar children’s film. In any case I was too young to process them as anything more than instant gratification or appreciate them in any lasting way.

    No, it was Star Wars that introduced me to the movies. My lifelong love of film is a direct result of…