Long Live the Cinema: 69th Berlin International Film Festival

It’s been an astonishing programme at the 69th Berlin International Film Festival. It was also the year when Dieter Kosslick bid farewell after a successful 18-year cycle as festival director. But his legacy has marked the festival’s paramount reputation and transparency regarding gender distribution in the Berlinale programme. In 2019 this encompassed direction, production, screenplay,… Continue reading Long Live the Cinema: 69th Berlin International Film Festival

Capernaum: give children the right to speak up

  Director Nadine Labaki, also starring as the 12 year-old Zain’s lawyer, powerfully speaks up and on behalf of children’s rights with her fourth feature Capernaum. Picked up for Best Foreign Language Film Oscar nomination and winner of the Jury Prize at Cannes in 2018, Labaki's Capernaum is an astonishing portrait of children in today’s… Continue reading Capernaum: give children the right to speak up

Jonas Mekas: reflections on avant-garde cinema

Lithuanian-born American filmmaker, poet and curator Jonas Mekas died peacefully on the morning of 23 January, a month after his 96th birthday. He was born in 1922, on Christmas eve. Mekas arrived in New York City with his brother Adolfas in 1949, where he bought his first Bolex camera with borrowed money. In 1954 both… Continue reading Jonas Mekas: reflections on avant-garde cinema

The alternative list of 11 best films of 2018

These filmmakers spoke the truth. You only have to dig out their works and 2019 already looks hopeful. Being Blacker Dir. Molly Dineen A rare portrait of black lives, Molly Dineen’s documentary follows record shop owner, renowned music producer and Brixton’s hero, Blacker Dread. Filmed with the warmth of their friendship, the starting point of… Continue reading The alternative list of 11 best films of 2018

Even When I Fall interview with directors Sky Neal and Kate McLarnon and producer Elhum Shakerifar

Even When I Fall tells the incredible true story of Nepal’s first and only circus set up by survivors of human trafficking. The film’s directors Kate McLarnon and Sky Neal filmed Circus Kathmandu’s journey over 7 years, as two incredible women – survivors of child trafficking – took the bold step of bringing an unrecognised… Continue reading Even When I Fall interview with directors Sky Neal and Kate McLarnon and producer Elhum Shakerifar

Cork Film Festival 2018: teen spirit, 90s energy and graffiti love

After ten days of exploding cinema, Ireland’s premier film festival wrapped a programme packed with cutting-edge films last week. My first but short-length attendance to the festival was a wonderful discovery of, what felt like, one of the most inclusive events in the city of Cork. In its 63rd edition this year, Cork Film Festival… Continue reading Cork Film Festival 2018: teen spirit, 90s energy and graffiti love

The female gaze: 13 women on and off-screen at the 62nd BFI London Film Festival

Suburban Birds (2018) Dir. Qiu Sheng Qiu Sheng’s debut is a treatise on capitalism, an astonishing poem about the loss of nature and eventually the loss of our trust to her. With a superb eye for close-ups, low-angle camera shots and astonishing photography, it’s a raw and at times hypnotic account of two worlds: that… Continue reading The female gaze: 13 women on and off-screen at the 62nd BFI London Film Festival

Carla Simón on her influences and Summer 1993: “What I love about Cria Cuervos is that it really portrays the complex psychology of children”

Two decades following the passing of her mother, writer-director Carla Simón was en route to London to study at the London Film School where she was taught something very special about the way we’re telling stories. A year after her 30th birthday anniversary, Simón polishing off her debut feature, which won her the Berlin Best… Continue reading Carla Simón on her influences and Summer 1993: “What I love about Cria Cuervos is that it really portrays the complex psychology of children”

Another look: 68th Berlin International Film Festival

Argentinian director-screenwriter Alessia Chiesa’s debut feature, The Endless Day, enters the world of children’s play without grown-ups in sight. At first glance it’s life through play, reading stories and walking in the woods with Claa, Tino, Fan and Coco the dog. Careless and throwback days are followed by close-ups and superb cinematography until food supplies… Continue reading Another look: 68th Berlin International Film Festival

Unsane: a psychiatric care horror

Claire Foy confirms her talent as a major actress in Steven Soderbergh’s thriller Unsane. Her extraordinary role as victim Sawyer Valentini who is stalked by a psychokiller (Joshua Leonard) for two years, gradually grows stronger in a mental health system to which she's submitted unwillingly and turns out to be corrupt and full of lies.… Continue reading Unsane: a psychiatric care horror