Pompei (2019): Fractured Adolescence within a Desolate Community

In the words of co-director Anna Falguères, “If history is always written by the victorious, Pompei is a marvellous counterexample.” She was, of course, referring to the lost city and its immortalization through a natural disaster, but her words apply just as well to the microcosm (of a time and Continue Reading

Heimat is a Space in Time (2019) ‘TIFF’ Review – Seeking Shelter within Memory while Exorcising Ghosts of the Past

Thomas Heise’s sprawling epic, Heimat is a Space in Time, charts the progress and gradual disintegration of a family spanning over three generations, which is juxtaposed against nearly 100-years of bloody German history. Through a series of meticulously narrated letters and diary entries ― set against gorgeous black-and-white imagery of Continue Reading

The County (2019) Review – Engrossing Drama About A Woman’s Lone Rebellion

Grímur Hákonarson’s sensitive drama The County is the tale of one woman’s determined fight against capitalist corruption threatening the social and economic freedom of their locality. Gorgeously shot by Mart Taniel (The Temptation of St. Tony, November), the film is bookended by wide Ceylanesque frames of the vast Icelandic mountains Continue Reading

Antigone (2019) Review – Refreshingly Moving Drama On Familial Sacrifice

“Freely adapted” from Sophocles’ Greek tragedy of the same name, Antigone is a vibrant and heartbreaking account of a teenager’s self-sacrificial journey through the Canadian criminal justice system to save her family from falling apart. Banking on an extraordinary lead performance from Nahéma Ricci (and her piercing green eyes) and Continue Reading

Fire Will Come (2019) Review – Fiery Visuals Fuel A Slow-Burn Narrative

Winner of the Un Certain Regard Jury Prize at Cannes, Oliver Laxe’s Fire Will Come ―set in rural Galicia ― is a quiet rumination on mankind’s place within the vast, untamed lap of nature. Through a minimalistic plot and restrained performances, it examines the symbiotic relationship between the human and Continue Reading

Jonaki (2018) ‘KIFF’ Review — A Kaleidoscopic Theatre Of Dreams

Crumbling walls. Broken stairwells. Damp floors covered with overgrowth and rot. Such is the haunting world of decaying memories which the 80-year-old Jonaki returns to in her sleep, perhaps searching for some sort of closure to her lifelong unfulfilled hopes, dreams, and desires. Aditya Vikram Sengupta’s astounding sophomore effort Jonaki Continue Reading

Island of the Hungry Ghosts (2018) ‘MAMI’ Review – A Horrific Story Of Shame For Australia

In one very heart-wrenching scene of Gabrielle Brady’s Island of the Hungry Ghosts, one of the refugees says “I think Hell is not just fire. Hell is somewhere you see suffering, you see your families suffering, you see your friends suffering. You can’t do anything”. It is this hell that Continue Reading

Hotel By The River (2018) ‘TIFF’ Review – A Delicately Told Family Drama

In his latest creative venture Hotel By The River, renowned Korean director Hong Sang-Soo presents us with a simple and endearing slice-of-life that is stylistically one among his more austere works to date. Primarily set in and around a riverside hotel, it juxtaposes an awkward family meeting between a poet Continue Reading

The Third Wife (2018) ‘TIFF’ Review – A mix of visual poetry with social commentary in this gorgeous debut

Ash Mayfair’s feminist film The Third Wife is most definitely going to evoke feels of Park Chan-wook’s The Handmaiden throughout due to how tonally similar the films are. The majestic cinematography of both the films along with the concept of exploring female sexuality also evokes similar feelings. That being said, Mayfair makes Continue Reading

Phoenix (2018) ‘TIFF’ Review — A Powerful and Moody Coming-of-Age Drama

Phoenix is a decidedly dark and mature examination of the psyche of a teenage girl, who is forced to grow up too quickly in order to keep her family together. In the process of dealing with a mentally unstable mother and a father who’s never around, the 14-year-old Jill Vogler Continue Reading