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  • That Most Important Thing: Love

    That Most Important Thing: Love

    After Quiberon I thought I should watch more Romy Schneider films. Unfortunately I chose this interminable, offensive bore-fest. Like being stuck at a DramSoc house party in a third-rate university town. Not even Klaus Kinski regurgitating the scenery as Richard III can prop the eyelids open. It does end, though. Some striking compositions and musical cues (is that the score from Le Mepris they’re playing with?) but a terribly wasted cast.

  • The Workshop

    The Workshop

    ★★★½

    As someone who teaches a lot of creative writing workshops, this was laced with tension and horror that had nothing to do with the wider social issues that are discussed here.

    Altogether excellent, I thought, but it seems to run out of film/story/insights about two-thirds of the way in. I'm glad the denouement was different from the expected. I liked the ending a lot. Well worth signing up for the workshop.


    Afterthought: is ‘granular’ really a long, difficult, old-fashioned word? Non.

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  • Suspiria

    Suspiria

    ★★★½

    Who would dare tangle with Argento and Nicolodi's Suspiria? For me it feels like a World Heritage Site of Natural Cinematic Beauty, a Grade I listed building: one of the jewels in the crown of film history. Madness. But the film is particularly open to, and encourages, madness.

    And of course it's not really a remake: it's an homage, a 'cover version' (Tilda Swinton at the gala screening at the London Film Festival last night), a re-imagining – or maybe…

  • The Dead Nation

    The Dead Nation

    ★★★★

    The Dead Nation (Romania, dir. Radu Jude) is an extraordinary documentary that maps out Romania's sure and steady slide into nationalism, anti-Semitism, fascism, and the Holocaust. The form and structure make it so extraordinary. It is basically 83 minutes of still photographs (from a photographic studio in a small rural Romanian town, taken between 1938 and 1946) set against readings from the contemporary diary of a local Jewish doctor, interspersed with news broadcasts and state propaganda.

    Radu Jude introduced the…