A Drama/Thriller Written by Wolfgang Fischer and Ika Künzel Directed by Wolfgang Fischer You can find a lot of movies about a vacation gone wrong, where the protagonist (or protagonists) must fight for their lives and the lives of those they love. But Wolfgang Fischer does something much more interesting in Styx. Aside from one … Continue reading Styx: How many can you save?
B+ Crime thriller Written by Fred Berger, Phil Hay, & Matt Manfredi Directed by Karyn Kusama Crime and grime penetrate Los Angeles in this very dark noir. The deeply dense plot works mostly as a structure for presenting atmosphere and character. But then, in the last few minutes, that plot suddenly becomes clear and everything … Continue reading Destroyer: Nicole Kidman as one tough dame
The last weeks of the year become a film festival desert in the Bay Area. 2018's last fest, Another Hole in the Head, closed December 12. But with the new year come new festivals. At least two will open in January. For Your Consideration Rafael, January 4 - 10 All sorts of rules control what … Continue reading Foreign Films & Crime-Soaked Movies: The first film festivals of 2019
Note: I updated this article on January 9. Sorry, but I have been asked to take down this review. When I viewed Destroyer in a press screening months ago, I was told that the film would open on Christmas day. So I set up my review to go live on December 20. I've just discovered Weeks later, … Continue reading Destroyer: Nicole Kidman as one tough dame
B+ Heist thriller Written by Manuel Alcalá, Alonso Ruizpalacios (as Alonso Ruiz Palacios) Directed by Alonso Ruizpalacios You know how this kind of movie works. The protagonist, never working alone, plans and executes a brilliant crime and, at least initially, gets away with it. Then everything falls apart because crime doesn't pay. That's pretty much … Continue reading Museo: Another heist gone wrong – but in a good way
Tuesday evening, my wife and I attended a special Tribute to Spike Lee at the Castro. First, David Thomson interviewed Lee on the Castro stage. Then, after an intermission, they screened Lee's latest film, BlacKkKlansman. As so often happens at these big events, a huge chunk of the house was reserved. If you're not some … Continue reading Spike Lee and BlacKkKlansman at the Castro
"God never wrote a good play in his life" - Kurt Vonnegut. When a movie has actors reciting dialog written by a screenwriter, it's a work of fiction. It can't be anything else, even if it was based on something that really happened. Life doesn't work like a well-told story. If you want facts, watch … Continue reading BlacKkKlansman: Truth vs. Art (spoiler: Art wins)