FILM REVIEW: DESTROYER

  Cops are tops. But if you’re Erin Bell in Destroyer you’re less tops and more likely to be drinking hops. Nicole Kidman plays a bedraggled and unrecognisable detective in this noir. While there are some moments where it is thrilling, most of it is far too slow-burning and perfunctory to really cut through. This film isn’t a neat…

FILM REVIEW: SHOW ME THE PICTURE: THE STORY OF JIM MARSHALL

  Imagine the photo shoot for Bob Dylan’s Freewheelin’ or concerts like: Woodstock, Johnny Cash’s gigs at Folsom and San Quentin, and The Beatles’s last official show at Candlestick Park. Most of us would trade our left hands to have been there. But if you were Jim Marshall, you could boast that you went and shot it! The late…

FILM REVIEW: RAISE HELL

  The Titanic had the Unsinkable Molly Brown. Texas meanwhile, had the unstoppable Molly Ivins. This tall, flame-haired woman was an outspoken, political commentator with a razor-sharp wit. Raise Hell is a documentary that covers every inch of this larger-than-life character. This film is the first documentary to be made about this formidable subject. It’s hard to see why,…

FILM REVIEW: HUMAN NATURE

  At SXSW 2017, American biochemist, Jennifer Doudna was telling everybody about CRISPR. Allow me one last Human Nature reference… Doudna was telling the last ones to know about a new technology that has the potential to alter genes. Human Nature is a documentary that takes a deep dive into this fascinating scientific world, and chronicles both its incredible…

FILM REVIEW: SOMETIMES ALWAYS NEVER

  Sometimes Always Never proves its only words. This UK dramedy is about a father and son’s complex relationship. It has an English sensibility and a profound love for the Scrabble board game. The result is a quirky and whimsical character study that feels like it pans out in real-time. This film at first was a…

FILM REVIEW: JEAN PAUL GAULTIER: FREAK & CHIC

  Models are cool people. Beautiful glamazons. You don’t think of them as freaks unless you’re Jean Paul Gaultier. The French designer dedicated an entire show to just this. Freak & Chic is a feature documentary that shows us this crazy world, as well as the hard work and creativity that went into shaping this wild party. Gautier is…

FILM REVIEW: WINE CALLING

  It is not uncommon to see reviewers describe a film as “Like a love letter” to something. In the case of French documentary, Wine Calling this is also true, but given the subject matter a toast seems more appropriate. This film is a deep dive into the worlds inhabited by a group of passionate and organic…

FILM REVIEW: CELEBRATION: YVES SAINT LAURENT

  Most people have seen Yves Saint Laurent’s creations but how many have wondered what is going on beneath the covers? The documentary, Celebration: Yves Saint Laurent, should answer some of these questions. This French film is shot in cinéma vérité style and gives a behind-the-scenes look at the fashion legend and his army of…

FILM REVIEW: STAN & OLLIE

  Some acts come as a package deal. Bert and Ernie. Batman and Robin. Tom and Jerry. Stan Laurel and Oliver Hardy AKA comedy duo, Laurel & Hardy, can be added to this list. The two comedians made over 100 silent and talking films. They entertained audiences with their funny antics and slapstick for decades. The biopic, Stan & Ollie is a celebration…

FILM REVIEW: MARIA BY CALLAS

  Maria Callas is a legendary opera singer whose life often resembled a Greek tragedy. The documentary, Maria by Callas, captures some of this sadness and heartbreak in its two-hour runtime. This film is a complex and detailed one about an infamous prima donna that should appeal to opera aficionados. This documentary is directed by…