Yorgos Lanthimos’ The Lobster is about the dangers of a society obsessed with compatibility. Despite its tense tone, Lanthimos manages to make it refreshing with dark humor. David (Colin Farrell) navigates the aftermath of a marital affair in a society which requires everyone to find a compatible partner, or be turned into an animal. On this journey he comes across The Short-Sighted Woman (Rachel Weisz) and together they rebel against the pressures of society.
Although The Lobster can be hard to watch, those familiar with Lanthimos’ body of work will find his penchant for dark humor similar to recent works of his, such as The Favourite. Lanthimos excels at constructing the dystopian universe housed within the film, creating an atmosphere of constant fear and desperation through its characters. Colin Farrell is unrecognizable in his role as a divorced husband in unfamiliar territory, while Rachel Weisz serves as a stoic narrator for the first half of the film. The remainder of the cast does well to present the idea that this is an unpleasant society to live in. Continue reading The Lobster: A Dark Take On Compatibility→
Ironically enough, a film about the clown prince of crime is director Todd Phillips’ first dive into drama. His recent lineup of work is comprised of comedies like The Hangover franchise and War Dogs, but looking back at his earliest work, it’s obvious that Phillips has merely come full circle. Phillips kicked off his film career with a documentary about GG Allin, a notoriously controversial punk artist, and having seen Joker it becomes apparent that he has a fascination with violent men. Joker is a character study focused on Arthur Fleck’s (Joaquin Phoenix) miserable descent into becoming the iconic villain. It checks all the award season boxes — incredible lead actor, score, and cinematography. However, it’s difficult to praise Joker without acknowledging that the plot is a victim of its obsession with glorifying the actions of its main character.
Kenny Riches’s A Name Without a Place is about grief, a weird recluse millionaire, and porn. But this exciting premise is also the film’s problem — it tries to be too much. Gordon Grafton (Bryan Burton) is struggling with the loss of his twin brother and dealing with his overbearing, much older, aging starlet girlfriend (Elizabeth McGovern). As a result, he decides to take a solo trip to the Florida Keys and along the way meets aspiring porn star Emma Lee (Charlotte Best) before the two ultimately crash their car into an eccentric’s (Patrick Fugit) secret estate.
Ad Astra won’t be this year’s big sci-fi space adventure but that doesn’t mean it’s not powerful. More space drama than space adventure, Brad Pitt’s emotional journey to the furthest reaches of our solar system as a blue collar astronaut will leave you in awe.
For My Sister, the formally ambitious micro-budget debut feature from Miami-based filmmaker Gabriel Rhenals, tackles the stigma related to mental illness with aplomb. Rhenals (who wrote, directed, shot, and edited the picture) navigates emotionally dense terrain with a gentle hand and light touch, providing a film that is both socially useful and surprisingly fun.
Released in 1968, George A. Romero’s Night of the Living Dead film revolutionized zombies from menacing and mythic servants à la Halperin to the cannibalistic harbingers of the apocalypse that trudge across screens today.
On April 6, 1993, a seventeen-year-old Zairian immigrant, Makome M’Bowole, was killed while unarmed and handcuffed to a radiator in police custody in Paris, France. What the French police would go on to call an “accident” became another incident in a widespread problem in France at the time, where over three hundred detained and unarmed people had been killed in police custody since the early 80s. Riots were commonplace after these killings in the communities of the victims, which were impoverished and comprised of racial and ethnic minorities as well as immigrants.