Favorite films

  • Pyaasa
  • In the Mood for Love
  • Suzaki Paradise: Red Light District
  • Bastards

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  • House

    ★★★

  • My Favourite Fabric

    ★★★½

  • A Bread Factory Part Two: Walk with Me a While

    ★★★★

  • American Girl

    ★★★½

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  • House

    House

    ★★★

    This batty 70s Japanese jokey horror film certainly has its defenders and its detractors, and I imagine it's as much for its off-the-wall anarchic style as anything else, but whatever it really all amounts to -- and I'm not sure what that may be, exactly -- it's at least plenty of fun. Indeed at its heart its a generic exploitation movie, in which a group of teenage girls go to one's aunt's house only to find it's haunted, as they…

  • My Favourite Fabric

    My Favourite Fabric

    ★★★½

    It may not be the most memorable title (despite having just watched it, it took me a while to look it up again), but it showcases the talents of Manal Issa, who held my attention a few years before in Danielle Arbid's Peur de rien (Parisienne), in which she plays a Lebanese-French woman. This film is set in Damascus, though of course not filmed there (a glance at the names in the credits suggests fairly clearly that it was shot…

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  • Urban Rashomon

    Urban Rashomon

    ★★★½

    It seems to me that a lot of photographer/director Khalik Allah's work is about the ethics of documenting poverty. In this short piece we see him capturing images of a street person called Frenchie, while the director reflects in voiceover about his borderline exploitative relationship with his subject. It's a film of beautiful images but also is very upfront about the ways in which representation is manipulation and exploitation, which is refreshing.

  • Vice

    Vice

    ★½

    In some ways, when I watch something like Vice (or indeed, writer/director Adam McKay's last film The Big Short), I think of David O. Russell's American Hustle or even the flashier Martin Scorsese of, say, Wolf of Wall Street, both of which films I broadly liked (although I'm cooling on the Russell over time). I think there's a lot of common ground, as comedic renderings of modern society in all its gaudiness and compromised politics, and perhaps there's a fine…