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  • Alan Clarke: Director

    Alan Clarke: Director

    ★★★

    Very no frills, but a good overview of Clarke's art. But also a valorisation of directors being fucking assholes, e.g. his use of agitation to get people physically violent against each other on screen. So all up I think both a bit more and less of Clarke as a result, perhaps not the intention.

  • Becoming John Ford

    Becoming John Ford

    ★★

    This is kind of weirdly incompetent? Covering up people talking with people not talking? A few good stories and maybe if I was a bit more of a Ford-head I'd be on its wavelength. But I'm not, and it just seemed overly desperate to make not much seem like a lot.

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  • La La Land

    La La Land

    ★★★★

    Saw this weeks ago but been under NZ embargo, and suspect my reaction would be even more positive if I had written a review at the time and/or hadn't been worn down by the haters, who are legion and seem to take enormous pride in their position. I sincerely get that there are flaws in this film, and I have zero issue with someone filing their "not for me" review and moving on, but I also fully believe that there…

  • The Long Day Closes

    The Long Day Closes

    ★★★★½

    Perhaps you're like me, and haven't seen much Davies, but you've seen enough Loach and Leigh to feel like you've got the measure of things when it comes to British kitchen-sink miserablism, and autobiographical coming of age stories have no special appeal for you, and you saw THE HOUSE OF MIRTH sixteen years ago and it quickly faded into a miasma of costume dramas, bubbling between THE END OF THE AFFAIR and AN IDEAL HUSBAND and a passel of Austen…