Jean-Luc Godard – Masculin, féminin: 15 faits précis AKA Masculine Feminine [+extras] (1966)



The story follows a young man in his early twenties named Paul (Jean-Pierre Léaud) who has just gotten out of his required tenure in the French army. He finds himself having difficulty adjusting once more to civilian life, after all, the military was all that he really knew for the last few years of his life. To help find his way back into things, Paul takes up writing and he spends a lot of time putting his thoughts down on paper in a small French café. While killing time in the café one day, by chance Paul meets a beautiful young lady named Madeleine (Chantal Goya) and the two begin talking. As they get to know one another it turns out that she’s an aspiring pop singer who works at a magazine that just so happens to have a use for someone like Paul who is handy with words so she gets him a job. Continue reading

Klaus Kinski – Kinski Paganini [Director’s Cut] (1989)


Klaus Kinski believed that he lived through the same experiences as the legendary “devil violinist” Paganini, who set whole Europe of the 19th century into frenzy and through whose personality Klaus Kinski offers us an incredibly profound and honest insight into his own life; a life of extremities.

The background of this roller coaster ride through the life of Kinski-Paganini is a spectacular concert, at which Paganini as “diabolical vampire with a violin” with his emotionally irresistible music, sets the audience on fire. Thus Kinski-Paganini leads us through segments of his past and, like a diabolical magician, foretells and envisions for us his unavoidable destiny. During the overpower performance of Paganini´s music we relive, through the unchecked mind of the demonical virtuoso, the main episodes of his damned life that was continually dominated by his three great passions: the violin, women and money. Also stars Deborah Caprioglio (Kinski’s wife at the time), Nikolai Kinski & Eva Grimaldi. Continue reading

Costas Zapas – Mikres Eleftheries AKA Minor Freedoms (2008)


One of the most outstanding directors of auteur cinema, Costas Zapas gained international acclaim with Uncut Family (2004) and The Last Porn Movie (2006). With Minor Freedoms his trilogy on the family is complete. Cineuropa: Minor Freedoms is the title of your latest film. However, in the film there is too little freedom. Your characters seem to have no choice. Continue reading

Henri Xhonneux – Marquis (1989)

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From IMDB:
‘Marquis’ is the only film I’ve ever seen by the oddly-named Henri Xhonneux, but it’s so imaginative and entertaining that I’m eager to see more of his work. ‘Marquis’ alleges to be based on incidents in the life and novels of the Marquis de Sade. If you’re seeking a “Cliff Notes” crib-sheet about de Sade or his works, look elsewhere. On its own merits, though, this film is highly enjoyable for those with a taste for the bizarre. Some of the activities of the real-life Marquis de Sade were downright contemptible, but I intensely admire the tremendous efforts he took to write down his prose in prison (where he was forbidden to possess paper or writing implements) and to smuggle his text out of prison for publication. I was intrigued to learn that the Marquis was a prisoner in the Bastille until only a few days before it was captured by the revolutionaries in 1789; it now appears that de Sade actively fomented the riot of Bastille Day, shouting to the people outside that there were weapons and allies within the prison. Continue reading

Andrey Konchalovskiy – Belye nochi pochtalona Alekseya Tryapitsyna AKA The Postman’s White Nights (2014)


The film represents life in a godforsaken Russian village. The only way to reach the mainland is to cross the lake by boat and a postman became the only connection with the outside world. A reserved community has been set up here. Despite the modern technologies and a spaceport nearby the people of the village live the way they would in the Neolithic Era. There is neither government nor social services or jobs. The postman’s beloved woman escapes the village life and moves to the city. Postman’s outboard engine gets stolen and he can no longer deliver mail. His normal pattern of life is disrupted. The postman makes a decision to leave for the city too but returns before long with no certain reason. The script is based on real characters’ stories. People from the village play their own parts in the film. The search for the protagonist lasted for over a year. Continue reading

Henri-Georges Clouzot – La Prisonnière AKA Woman in Chains (1968)


“When instinctive film artists have passed their chronological niche, they either parody themselves or set out for new fields of action at the risk of complete failure … Clouzot goes down swinging.” – Paul Schrader

Synopsis (MIFF 2015)
After a long career making gripping black-and-white thrillers such as Diabolique and Wages of Fear, Henri-Georges Clouzot changed tack completely in the 1960s, turning his hand instead to colourful avant-garde experimentation. His first project from that period, L’Enfer, was famously never completed; but in 1968, Clouzot managed to make one final film: La Prisonnière.

Bored with her mundane existence, an artist’s wife becomes involved with a gallery owner, whose sadomasochistic fantasies both attract and repel her. As their affair deepens, her grip on reality begins to falter, and the film climaxes with an extended dream sequence – a flurry of spellbindingly colourful psychedelia. Continue reading