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  • Afternoon

    Afternoon

    ★★★½

    Based on the three works I’ve viewed so far, I would suggest that Schanelec is among the most thoughtful and purposeful composers of images working today. So much is stated about her elliptical editing and play with duration – whether these choices are praised or wholly dismissed as oblique or empty – but her organization/construction of profilmic images is as much or even more responsible for the singular tone and experience of her films.

    Specifically, her aperture framing, especially when…

  • A Film Like Any Other

    A Film Like Any Other

    ★★★

    Many have historicized A Film Like Any Other as a turning point toward a certain mode of increasingly non-narrative and overtly political filmmaking in Godard's career. Based on the time I've spent with the director's work over the years (which has never involved a chronological journey through his complex filmography), this common description of the film-as-transition seems to fit.

    That said, A Film Like Any Other seems most intriguing based on its historical specificity within the broader political situation, rather…

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  • Quintet

    Quintet

    ★★★★½

    "Has it occurred to you that what you are doing is disruptive? You will never understand the scheme until you're part of the scheme."

    From its opening shot, hypnotically and slowly tracking across a desolate landscape of snow, Quintet commits to its much-maligned style.

    As our culture becomes more eager to speak about movies as "so bad they're good," ambitious films like Quintet are lost in the shuffle. Those who do take the time to watch this universally panned film…

  • Early Summer

    Early Summer

    ★★★★★

    Few (read: no) filmmakers have ever matched Yasujiro Ozu's ability to portray the multiple stages of familial struggles, and Early Summer is one of the most successful explorations of what it means to relate to family members across generational lines.

    Tokyo Twilight is the most immediate entry in his filmography for me today, because its probing of the difficult balance of 20-something life with familial expectations is unparalleled. Now that I'm a dad to a little boy, the male childhood…