Fiction - Commercial - Corporate - Animation - Documentary
This week, we’re all about extreme ideas explored to their fullest potential, and as a case study, we’d like to propose « Goke, Body Snatcher from Hell », an alien-invasion-survival-vampire horror film with, surely, the best title of all time. If your taste-buds are finely tuned to the delights of some of the weirder horror-shlock from the 80s, then you might have just found your cinematic caviar!
Our film of the week is a brutal horror nobody should have to experience, the hugely controversial Men Behind The Sun. If Schindler’s List is too much for you, stay clear of this baffling depiction of Japanese POW camps in the run-up to WWII. Call it bad taste, call it propaganda, this denunciation of cruelty on an unprecedented scale is a meaner film than you’ve probably ever seen, and helps remember human tragedies that should never be forgotten. Warning: not for the faint of heart!
As the Dark Knight and Man of Steel duke it out onscreen, we celebrate our favorite film outing of either superhero: Tim Burton’s magnum opus. The totally bonkers gothic fairytale that is his Batman Returns dared to go way beyond the conventions of even its tortured title character. Yes, the Bat is almost a supporting character, but his antagonists, all beautiful freaks, are beyond iconic. Burton, his cast and composer Danny Elfman have never been better than here.
This time our film of the week needs little introduction, underground legend that it is. A labyrinth-plotted, legally-dodgy rip-off of unprecedented dimensions, « Turkish Star Wars » as it is often referred to, steals its score from Indiana Jones, entire sequences from Star Wars, and ties it all together with insane pseudo-Rambo VS Power Ranger alien action whose level of stupidity rivals anything in Monty Python’s catalogue. As you drain the blood from your eyes you’ll find it impossible to decide whether this is the worst or best film ever made.
With its lush design and iconic villain, Walt Disney’s Sleeping Beauty is without a doubt the most visually stunning of the studio’s golden age classics. Drawing on a rich range of Renaissance art and a score adapted from Tchaikovsky eponymous ballet, the first animated feature in super-70 widescreen has barely aged a day, and we invite you to rediscover it as soon as you can.
Our film of the week is a very subtle breed of revolutionary, turning all the common expectations one has from a documentary on their head: it’s subjective, it’s got one point of view, and is uniquely cinematic. Filmmaker Errol Morris grills US Defense Secretary (Japan firebombing and Vietnam War architect) Robert McNamara and the result is spellbinding. A must-see!
Back in 1982, a seminal, character-based sci-fi film came out and marked a generation – no, it’s not ET: it’s John Carpenter’s The Thing! One of the very best, meanest and smartest horror films in memory, it takes it time building up meticulously, and then it goes apeshit, unleashing Rob Bottin’s horrific practical effects that endure to this day. For all that, though, the real genius is in the oppressive mood and that haunting opening and closing theme.
Our mov… no, our FILM of the week is the majestic Leopard, the most beautiful, mostly-interior bound 70mm epic ever made (sorry Tarantino!): though the film throws a few fine Sicilian ones at us, who needs landscapes when you have the faces of Burt Lancaster, Alain Delon and Claudia Cardinale?
Our film of the week is a subtle masterpiece: in Jean-Pierre Melville’s « Silence de la Mer », an old man and his niece have to share their home with an occupying German officer. They express their protest through a vow of silence. With a lot less blood but more complex emotions, it does for WWII films what « Hateful Eight » did for Westerns, and revealed a new great talent of world cinema, already a virtuoso in his startling debut.
While The Revenant tears through screens across the world, it’s time to rediscover the virtuoso man-against-nature classic Letter Never Sent, the apotheosis of Mikhail (Soy Cuba!) Kalatozov’s career. Handheld, long-take wide-angle cinematography has rarely, if ever, been this stunning!