Rabah Ameur-Zaïmeche – Wesh wesh, qu’est-ce qui se passe? (2001)

Halfway between documentary and fiction, ’Wesh wesh’ is a take on the everyday life of an immigrant family which is struggling to integrate into France or, rather into the ’Cite des Bosquets’ a low-income housing project in the Parisian suburbs. Like every district, it is a world of its own, with its rules and values. Mousse, the younger brother has understood how it works there. He has integrated a gang, and deals everyday with small time drug trafficking and protects his territory. On the other hand, his older brother who just came back after 2 years in prison, wants to start a normal life and integrate into society. He understands soon enough that it is hard to succeed behind the walls of ‘Les Bosquets’. He tries to find a job, with the help of his family. But without ID papers, and with the police after him, he is stuck in the neighborhood, spending time with the street kids. One day, he finds a fishing rod, and escapes from the city, going fishing in a lake, close to where he lives… Read More »

Daniel Eisenberg – The Unstable Object (2011)

Daniel Eisenberg’s THE UNSTABLE OBJECT juxtaposes the production of luxury automobiles in Dresden, clocks in Chicago and cymbals in a town outside of Istanbul. These detailed observations of modern factories reveal the distance between the creation and consumption of objects within our globalized economy. This results in a rich visual experience made all the more ironic by the fact that the workers in Chicago assembling the clocks are blind (and therefore never experience the scenes which the filmmaker presents). Although clearly referencing early industrial films, Eisenberg cleverly and attentively recorded all the sound entirely on location, creating a heightened esthetic universe all his own. Read More »

Arthur Ripley – Thunder Road (1958)

The preeminent moonshine movie, the 1958 Thunder Road stars Robert Mitchum as a backwoods bootlegger in Tennessee, getting squeezed by both the federal government and organized crime. Mitchum had a big hand in creating this cult favorite (which reportedly played in drive-ins around America for years), writing the script, producing the movie, and even composing and singing the movie’s theme song, which became a radio hit. Directed by longtime cinematographer Arthur Ripley, the film is strong on characters and action, the latter fulfilled by a memorable chase scene at the end. Mitchum was at an artistic peak at this point in his career, and this is really an indispensable movie for his fans. Read More »

Joseph Losey – The Criminal (1960)

Ex-con Johnny (Stanley Baker) used his time in prison wisely – to plan the biggest robbery of his career. The robbery goes smoothly and Johnny goes to bury the money in a field until the heat is off, as agreed with friend and racketeer Mike Carter (Sam Wanamaker) and the rest of the gang. In a moment of weakness, Johnny pockets five hundred odd pounds from the haul. Coupled with a tip-off from his ex-girlfriend (Jill Bennett) this proves to be his undoing and Johnny is soon back in prison. The rest of the gang try in vain to get the location of the money out of him without success until Mike hits upon the idea of a break-out using Johnny’s new love Suzanne (Margit Saad) as bait. Read More »

Zelimir Zilnik – Cosmo Girls (2000)

This is a series of portraits of women from different fields of work who find new occupations and ways to support their families in the transitional period. The following women give us their views of the relationship between men and women – a Chinese woman who owns a beauty salon and hairdresser’s studio; women who work for the first privately owned shoes factory; women who participate at the Erotic Fair in Budapest; a manager of an exclusive fish restaurant and successful business women. Read More »

Yasuo Tsuruhashi – Gosaigyô no Onna AKA Black Widow Business (2016)

A predatory middle-aged woman and her partner prey upon aging older men of a certain wealth. The idea is as old as the history of mankind itself: take the man’s money in exchange for something pretty on his arm’s and a good time (to start). You would think more than half a dozen former husbands may be a red flag and it only becomes when two daughters with their radars up seek to dig deeper into the woman taking their father’s inheritance and wealth. Not that any of this is slowing the scoundrels down. Read More »

E. Max Frye – Amos & Andrew (1993)

Andrew Stirling, a successful black urbanite buys a holiday home in America. On his first night there he is mistaken for a burglar by the police. To cover their tracks they unleash Amos Odell from prison to pretend to take Andrew hostage in return for his freedom. But things get tricky when the press turn up. Read More »