Cosmotropia de Xam – Malacreanza: From The Diary Of A Broken Doll (2014)

Cosmotropia de Xam is back with more “arthouse horror” with his latest feature, MALACREANZA: FROM THE DIARY OF A BROKEN DOLL.

JASON COFFMAN wrote:

This film, his follow-up to DIABOLIQUE, is touted as both “arthouse horror” and “experimental giallo,” and while it is similar in tone to DIABOLIQUE, it is even further removed from standard narrative than that film. MALACREANZA only features one actor on screen during its entire running time, and features imagery more traditionally associated with experimental film than narrative features.

Anna (Shivabel) wakes up, nude, near what appears to be an abandoned factory. She wanders around and hears voices that seem to control her. These voices are the only other presences in the film—other than Anna, no actors appear on-screen. The voices taunt and command, as Anna wanders from one bizarre nightmare world to the next, similarly to how the characters in DIABOLIQUE would float from one place to another, but even more abstract in both its narrative structure and visual style. Continue reading

Don Levy – Herostratus (1967) (HD)

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In British director Don Levy’s Herostratus, a young poet, Max (Michael Gothard, The Devils), decides to commit suicide in public as a form of protest. He hires a prestigious marketing company to capture the event and promote it to the masses. As preparations begin, however, Max realizes that his plan might be flawed – he doubts that the company would cover the event as he wishes. With only a few days left, the young rebel is faced with an impossible dilemma – finish what he has started, or abandon his plan and run away.

Herostratus reminded me about two very powerful films: Marco Bellocchio’s Fists in the Pocket (1965) and Bernardo Bertolucci’s Partner (1968). In the former, a young epileptic (Lou Castel), frustrated with the world around him, goes on a family killing spree. In the latter – a film loosely based on Fyodor Dostoevsky’s work The Double – a passionate revolutionary’s (Pier Clementi) plan to commit suicide issuddenly thrown into turmoil when a mysterious double appears. Continue reading

David Thompson – Arena: Nicolas Roeg – It’s About Time (2015)

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The first major profile of the great British film director Nicolas Roeg, examining his very personal vision of cinema as in such films as Don’t Look Now, Performance, Walkabout and The Man Who Fell to Earth. Roeg reflects on his career, which began as a leading cinematographer, and on the themes that have obsessed him, such as our perception of time and the difficulty of human relationships. With contributions from key collaborators, including Julie Christie, Jenny Agutter and Theresa Russell, and directors he has inspired such as Danny Boyle, Mike Figgis, Bernard Rose and Ben Wheatley. Continue reading

Jerzy Skolimowski – Moonlighting (1982)

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Nowak (Irons) leads a small team of Polish building contractors, hired by a wealthy Pole to illegally refurbish his London home. They slip into England under false pretenses and squat in the house as they work on it–but shortly after they arrive, the military take over Poland and declare martial law (this real event happened in December of 1981). Only Nowak speaks English, so only he knows this has happened; fearing that if the others find out, they’ll stop working, he decides not to tell them. As he starts stealing and scamming to stretch their rapidly vanishing money, Nowak grows increasingly paranoid and mentally fragile. Moonlighting is a political allegory and a psychological portrait, but thanks to Irons’ sympathetic performance, the movie is also rivetingly suspenseful. Continue reading

Kenneth Glenaan – Summer (2008)

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Shaun and Daz are vibrant kids, wasted by their experience of education. All they have is their friendship and for Shaun his first love Katy. From the moment Shaun steps into our world he is bound to lose. Labeled as a violent bully he destroys himself and takes Daz with him. Shaun has twelve years to reflect on an intense summer of love, sex and loyalty. But Daz’s imminent death forces Shaun to go on a journey to confront his past. This is the story of a man full of intelligence and promise struggling to reclaim his life. Continue reading