John Gilling – The Pirates of Blood River [+commentary] (1962)

A group of ruthless pirates attack a seventeenth century Huguenot settlement on the Isle of Devon in search of treasure and will stop at nothing to obtain it. Read More »

Oliver Schmitz – Life, Above All (2010)

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Just after the death of her newly born sister, Chanda (12) learns of a rumour spreading through her small village near Johannesburg. It destroys her family and forces her mother to flee. Chanda leaves home and school in search of her mother – and the truth. Life, Above All is an emotional and universal drama about a young girl (stunningly performed by first-time-actress Khomotso Manyaka) who fights the fear and shame that have poisoned her community. The film captures the enduring strength of loyalty and a courage powered by the heart. Directed by South African filmmaker Oliver Schmitz (Mapantsula, Paris, je t-aime), it is based on the international award winning novel ‘Chanda’s Secrets’ by Allan Stratton. Read More »

Werner Herzog & Clive Oppenheimer – Fireball: Visitors from Darker Worlds (2020)

Quote:
If you don’t think that much about meteors, you have a whole universe to discover in Fireball: Visitors from Darker Worlds. Werner Herzog reunites with University of Cambridge professor Clive Oppenheimer, with whom he explored volcanoes for Into the Inferno. They travel the world hunting for meteors, revealing connections between science, history, and mythology. On camera, Oppenheimer interviews specialists with wonder and a dry wit, covering freak accidents, apocalyptic scenarios, and the mysteries of the cosmos. Herzog narrates in his distinct Bavarian accent. His phrasing remains unparalleled, even in his simple description of a Mexican beach resort “so godforsaken it makes you want to cry.” Read More »

Amanda Rubin – Roland Barthes: 21st Century Mythologies (2020)

BBC Four Website Description
Art historian Professor Richard Clay explores how Mythologies, written in 1957 by French philosopher Roland Barthes, laid bare the myth-making at the heart of popular culture. Now, following in Barthes’s footsteps, Richard Clay dissects some of the everyday myths we still take for granted in the 21st century, revealing the hidden meanings in everything from money, Wi-Fi and race to the Madonna. Read More »

Elio Petri – Buone notizie AKA Good News (1979)

“Only for those abnormal” (an IMDB review by RodrigAndrisani)

The music for this film is composed by the greatest composer of film music of all time, Ennio Morricone. But it’s almost nonexistent and as little as it is, it’s not great. Deliberately maybe, because the subject itself, with capital M, is Madness, The Madness of Humanity. Place of the action: the crazy world we live in, a world where those who do not kill, do not use drugs, etc., are abnormal. Here’s what the director Elio Petri himself says, in his book “The adventurous history of Italian cinema”: “It’s a film about the société du spectacle. In the society of the spectacle it’s not the spectacle of life, there is only the show that gives you the impression that you live, while you don’t live from long time ago. Read More »

S. William Hinzman – The Majorettes (1987)

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1987’s The Majorettes is not for everyone. Most modern moviegoers will recoil at the bargain bin acting, gratuitous nudity, badly choreographed action, and overall mess of a plot. For the more adventurous among us, however, there’s something at its core that can’t be replicated in today’s cinematic climate; the pure, unbridled camp of a lost era Read More »

Asif Kapadia – Diego Maradona [+ Commentary] (2019)

Constructed from over 500 hours of never-before-seen footage, this documentary centers on the career of celebrated football player Diego Armando Maradona, who played for S.S.C. Napoli in the 1980s. Read More »