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  • In the Intense Now

    In the Intense Now

    ★★★

    Ultimately, the key conflict in this movie is between television spectres: between de Gaulle's on-screen fatigue addressing the nation and anarchist Daniel Cohn-Bendit's vitality debating live on-air, a power struggle later flipped on its head. Along with the 16mm China footage dug up from the personal archive of the director's mother, this pictorial face-off is at the heart of Joao Moreira Salles' interest in the mysterious inner life—political and otherwise—of filmed images.

  • Young People

    Young People

    ★★★½

    Even with his great sense of the physical, Dwan was first and foremost a filmmaker of concepts. Like Godard, he begins with the weight of a gesture and ends in the realm of abstraction. In YOUNG PEOPLE, the characters constitute the moving parts in a delicate treatise on young v. old, Democrat v. Republican, progress v. reaction. No Hollywood filmmaker outside of McCarey looked at the politics of small-town traditions with such contempt.

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  • Hit 2 Pass

    Hit 2 Pass

    Walker's is a nerdy, cube-like style: shots of busy knees knocking about a scene; odd angles; oversymmetrical framing; sluggish, distended editing never gunning for an obvious move. It's a film where the forced impositions put upon otherwise unsculpted material stretch our perceptions between extremes; the effect is of observing constant lateral invention and editorial improvisation. There's no either/or in this film. The most contrived, fantastical scenes are shot-through with a simple splash of reality, stretched beyond believability by a refusal…

  • The Ornithologist

    The Ornithologist

    I kept thinking that this should have been directed by John Waters. João Pedro Rodrigues is far too tasteful for any of this to come off; he's a smart filmmaker, but the many provocations only draw attention to the fact that Rodrigues still films everything in good taste art-house tableau—a kind of studied sub-Hitchcock where the actors are pinned down by the weight of the artfully ornamental images, able only to glide sedately around the frame. Perhaps for me the…