Hilton Lacerda’s film debut is a lively take on the conflict between the straight establishment and the gay avant garde in late ’70s Brazil, and won a clutch of awards at the recent Rio festival.
The spirit of Fassbinder lives on in Hilton Lacerda’s Tattoo, at once an homage to the anarchist theater scene in late 1970s Brazil, a portrait of a society on the edge of change, and a punchy critique of Latin American homophobia. As drama, Tattoo tells an often-told story, but it does achieve a distinctive air of controlled chaos, managing to be both bouncy and thought-provoking in an unsubtle kind of way. Having picked up several awards in Rio, Tattoo should go on to leave its mark at festivals where the gay and the political meet. Its five Rio awards included best actor and best supporting actor. Continue reading
In first century Rome, two student friends, Encolpio and Ascilto, argue about ownership of the boy Gitone, divide their belongings and split up. The boy, allowed to choose who he goes with, chooses Ascilto. Only a sudden earthquake saves Encolpio from suicide. We follow Encolpio through a series of adventures, where he is eventually reunited with Ascilto, and which culminates in them helping a man kidnap a hermaphrodite demi-god from a temple. The god dies, and as punishment Encolpio becomes impotent. We then follow them in search of a cure. The film is loosely based on the book Satyricon by Gaius Petronius Arbiter, the “Arbiter of Elegance” in the court of Nero. The book has only survived in fragments, and the film reflects this by being very fragmentary itself, even stopping in mid-sentence.
The first colour film by Czech master director František Vlácil ADELHEID is an emotional tale of two lovers trapped in the march of history.
In the aftermath of WWII, a Czech airman returns home from his tour of duty with the British RAF, intending to claim a German factory located in the Sudetenland along the Czech-German border. There he meets the beautiful Adelheid, the former owner’s daughter who once lived in the estate but is now reduced to servitude. The Czech airman falls in love with Adelheid, but lingering resentment and bitter political strife stand in the way of their happiness. (-Second Run) Continue reading
Some movies are watched. “The Strange Color Of Your Body’s Tears” is a movie you live inside. This new film from directors Helene Cattet and Bruno Forzani touches you repeatedly, inappropriately, from the front and, delightfully, from the rear. To synopsize the film is folly, though it will be fun to see viewers try. This is the magic that Cattet and Forzani have weaved from their debut effort “Amer,” a hypnotic trip down the giallo rabbit hole. Very few filmmakers today are working with a radical new vocabulary, but Cattet and Forzani are using genre of the past to toss us, shouting, into the future. Continue reading
Tsai Ming-Liang follows his trademark ‘pondering static camera’ (“Rebels of the Neon God”, “The River”, “The Hole” and “Vive L’Amour” ) with his fifth feature film, “What Time is it There?”. His unconventional style will deter many cinema goers who might envisage something more easily penetrable, perhaps requiring less speculation. In a pure minimalist vein, Tsai uses no music (aside from “The 400 Blows” theme played sparingly). There is no cinematographic panning shots… no camera movement for each take. Each scene is a single static shot. There are almost no close-ups. There are extremely long stretches without any dialogue. Hopefully, this does not send you running in the other direction because it is indeed a wonderful viewing experience touching upon many important modern emotional themes.
The New York Times review, Published: October 16, 1972
Roger Greenspun wrote:
“Fellini’s Roma” is perhaps three-quarters Fellini and one-quarter Rome; a very good proportion for a movie. Although an appreciation of the city informs every part of the movie, Rome is not so much the subject as the occasion for a film that is not quite fiction and surely not fact, but rather the celebration of an imaginative collaboration full of love and awe, suspicion, admiration, exasperation and a measure of well-qualified respect.
It is also, for me, the most enjoyable Fellini in a dozen years, the most surprising, the most exuberant, the most beautiful, the most extravagantly theatrical. The audience I saw it with kept interrupting the film with applause. This isn’t something you normally do at the movies, but it seems proper enough for “Fellini’s Roma.”
Jonathan Glazer‘s film is a gorgeous piece of film-making that leaves the narrative heavy-lifting to the viewers as it eschews a traditional setup and instead relies on visuals to clue us in as the story progresses. Expect complaints similar to those hurled at Upstream Color, that the story is unclear or convoluted, but such accusations are as baseless here as they were with Shane Carruth’s film. The details may be elusive, but the steadily engrossing narrative is clear. Continue reading