Facing Trauma in Raed Andoni’s “Ghost Hunting”

Raed Andoni’s “Ghost Hunting” is one of the most underrated documentaries out there, and the only reason it’s underrated is because it’s underseen. We have Second Run, the UK-based boutique label, to thank for re-releasing this beautiful work of humanitarian cinema on physical media. In the film, the Palestinian director experiments with re-enactment to allowContinue reading “Facing Trauma in Raed Andoni’s “Ghost Hunting””

Man’s Hunger for Power in “Witchhammer”

⁣ Throughout the history of motion pictures, the witch trials of the 17th century have often been portrayed as an allegory of life under totalitarian rule. Films like Benjamin Christensen’s “Häxan”, Carl Theodor Dreyer’s “Day of Wrath”, and Ken Russell’s “The Devils” used these horrific tales to criticize the political climate of their time. “Häxan”Continue reading “Man’s Hunger for Power in “Witchhammer””

Film Analysis: “Do the Right Thing”

On May 25, 2020, a video surfaced on the internet of George Floyd being choked to death by cops during an arrest in Minneapolis. His death caused global outrage, with chants of “I can’t breathe” heard from demonstrators everywhere. When I first watched the distressing footage, it filled me with anger, and frustration. It wasContinue reading “Film Analysis: “Do the Right Thing””

Exposing the Ugly Truth in “Z”

Costa-Garvas opens his polarizing political masterpiece with an arresting statement that sets the tone for the rest of the film: “any resemblance to real events, to persons living or dead, is not accidental. It is DELIBERATE.” Right from the outset, you find yourself hooked and drawn into one of the most thrilling explorations of politicalContinue reading “Exposing the Ugly Truth in “Z””

The Monstrosity of War in “Come and See”

Few films capture the monstrosity of war like Elem Klimov’s prolific masterpiece, “Come and See”. It is a war film that doesn’t interest itself in showcasing combat. It features no adrenaline-charged battle scenes or action sequences. Instead, Klimov exposes some of the most disturbing and traumatizing human behavior ever recorded in history, the systematic persecutionContinue reading “The Monstrosity of War in “Come and See””

The Simple Pleasures of Life in Abbas Kiarostami’s “Taste of Cherry”

Abbas Kiarostami fascinates me. He is a poet, humanitarian, and a master when it comes to blurring the line between art and reality. With his Palm D’or winning work, “Taste of Cherry”, the Iranian director challenges us to look at the forbidden subject of suicide in an Islamic state. It is a small independent filmContinue reading “The Simple Pleasures of Life in Abbas Kiarostami’s “Taste of Cherry””

Film Analysis: “The Emperor’s Naked Army Marches On”

It took Kazuo Hara five years to get “The Emperor’s Naked Army Marches On” made, and it took me even longer than that to finally see it. For the longest time, this masterpiece was only available to watch in extremely low-resolution video or by purchasing a pricy out of print DVD that would occasionally popContinue reading “Film Analysis: “The Emperor’s Naked Army Marches On””

A Look at “The Exterminating Angel” During Times of Crisis

It is not surprising that during these surreal times we live in, I find myself incredibly drawn to the work of Luis Buñuel, father of Surrealist cinema. Watching his 1962 masterpiece, “The Exterminating Angel” in the context of a nationwide quarantine has given this film a whole new meaning. Almost sixty years after it wasContinue reading “A Look at “The Exterminating Angel” During Times of Crisis”

Domestic Turmoil in John Cassavetes’ “A Woman Under the Influence”

John Cassavetes’ most revered film, “A Woman Under the Influence”, is one of cinema’s exemplary works of realism. The title refers to an urban housewife who is gradually losing her sanity. As this intense film unfolds, Cassavetes slowly shifts his focus to the eccentric husband. This subtle switch of the viewer’s gaze is absolute genius.Continue reading “Domestic Turmoil in John Cassavetes’ “A Woman Under the Influence””

Paranoia in John Carpenter’s “The Thing”

⁣“Man is the warmest place to hide.” “The Thing” is John Carpenter’s greatest work; it is also a strong contender for the most entertaining horror film ever made. The film takes place on a remote base camp stationed in Antarctica. Life gets disrupted when the scientists spot a helicopter chasing and attempting to shoot aContinue reading “Paranoia in John Carpenter’s “The Thing””