Falling for The Love Witch, an interview with Anna Biller

First published by Kino! 28-29. Back in January at International Film Festival Rotterdam, among the hundreds of films screening, a path emerged that lead led this writer to films concerned with womanhood. Nicolette Krebitz’s Wild took the notion of the wild woman archetype literally, playing deviously with female instinct and longing. Elizabeth Subrin’s A Woman, A Part, explored the mid-life crisis of a woman shifting … Continue reading Falling for The Love Witch, an interview with Anna Biller

My week in film: Iberodocs, Green Room and a Captain America movie

After a hiatus shaped like Alchemy Film and Moving Image Festival (which I produced), my viewing journal returns with a typical mix of artistic expression and popcorn nonsense. On Wednesday night the third edition of Iberodocs – Scotland’s only dedicated documentary festival and a celebration of Ibero-American cinema – opened at Filmhouse in Edinburgh to a packed audience. Begun as a way to showcase the … Continue reading My week in film: Iberodocs, Green Room and a Captain America movie

Sex, beauty and role play at IFFR 2016

Last year, I participated in International Film Festival Rotterdam’s Trainee Programme for Young Film Critics. It was my first visit to a film festival outside the UK and it opened up a world of cinema I’d yet to see at that point. Going back this year has been a very different experience, not least of all for navigating the programme without the structure of jury … Continue reading Sex, beauty and role play at IFFR 2016

Aniston of the week: Management

This week, we approached another miss-matched couple with trepidation, but we were delighted to see Aniston playing football! Not only that, producing and starring in a flawed but endearing film. FILM: Management YEAR: 2008 DIRECTOR: Stephen Belber CHARACTER NAME AND PROFESSION: Sue, commercial art dealer PLOT SUMMARY: On a work trip to present to potential clients, Sue stays at a motel owned by Trish (Margo … Continue reading Aniston of the week: Management

My week in film: Beyond the Lights, Brooklyn and Joy

Viewed this week, three films about female lives that in different ways present the difficulties of balancing a personal and professional life. Gina Prince-Blythewood’s Beyond the Lights went without a cinema release in the UK last year, despite its excellent cast (Gugu Mbatha-Raw, Minnie Driver, Danny Glover) and pertinent plot – it concerns a young R&B singer struggling with fame and self-perception – and critics … Continue reading My week in film: Beyond the Lights, Brooklyn and Joy

My week in film: Melissa McCarthy twice plus Tangerine

Pretty soon the viewing habits of this writer will all feature the sight of a Christmas tree, tinsel, presents and/or snow, but for the last week before the festive holidays commence proper, there’s been time to catch some of the year’s lauded comedies and acclaimed dramas. Sean Baker’s Tangerine has been widely praised and discussed since its world premiere at Sundance in January. Shot using … Continue reading My week in film: Melissa McCarthy twice plus Tangerine

Aniston of the Week: Cake

2015 saw the release of a film that showcased what might be thought of as Jennifer Aniston’s most revealing and dramatic role. Ignoring the middling reviews allows an engagement with an understated and powerful performance and a chance for Aniston to take centre stage. FILM: Cake DIRECTOR: Daniel Barnz YEAR: 2014 CHARACTER NAME AND PROFESSION: Claire Bennett, former lawyer PLOT SUMMARY: Claire is recovering from … Continue reading Aniston of the Week: Cake

My week in film: Carol, Sunset Song and more…

As the red curtains are soon to close on 2015, the impetus to catch up on films I’ve missed has set in. It’s also the time for ‘Best of’ lists and for my part I’ve already contributed to one – in early November I was asked to select my ‘preferred five films’ of 2015 for Sight & Sound magazine’s annual poll. Since then I’ve seen … Continue reading My week in film: Carol, Sunset Song and more…

LOCAL/LOCALE season at EFG: Tired Moonlight

The final screening in the mini season LOCAL/LOCALE at Edinburgh Film Guild is the UK premiere of Britni West’s Slamdance award-winning Tired Moonlight. Set and shot in West’s hometown of Kalispell, Montana, Tired Moonlight uses mainly non-professional actors and a ‘documentary’ approach to capture the atmosphere of this simultaneously ordinary and special place. The director went back to Kalispell over the summers of 2012 and … Continue reading LOCAL/LOCALE season at EFG: Tired Moonlight

Aniston of the week: Friends with Money

After the horror of last weeks’ Horrible Bosses, rather than dive right back into that misogynistic pit for the sequel, we look back to one of those ‘serious’ roles where Aniston shows that less is more. Aniston is also in very good company, among a solid cast who all underplay in order to hold up the film’s weighty, worthy theme. FILM: Friends with Money DIRECTOR: … Continue reading Aniston of the week: Friends with Money