NEWS

OPINION: What happened to chronology?

Directors resort to the flashback too indulgently, it would seem

Introducing in a narrative flashbacks, fragments of dreams, partially remembered scenes has always been part and parcel of cinema. Examples abound. Look at classic films. The childhood sled scenes in “Citizen Kane” are indispensable. As is the famous flashback explaining the Gregory Peck character’s trauma in “Spellbound." The process works, when it is used within reasonable limits. When repeated ... more >

FESTIVAL NEWS: SBIFF35 will open with the Shelly Love-directed “A bump along the way”

The Santa Barbara International Film Festival (SBIFF) earlier this week announced the lineup for the 35th edition, which will run January 15 to 25, 2020. The festival will feature forty-seven world premieres and seventy-one U.S. premieres from fifty countries. During a press conference SBIFF’s executive director Roger Durling said, “for 35 years, SBIFF has been a reflection of the city that ... more >

BEST OF 2019: Anthony Francis presents his favorite movies

Some honorable mentions given out, too

2019 started out as a bumpy road. By summer I worried that I wouldn’t be able to make a full top ten. By year’s end, however, some fine work started to shine. 1. (an absolute tie of the two most original and cinematically pleasing films of the year!): “The Irishman” (directed by Martin Scorsese) / “Once Upon a Time In Hollywood” (directed by Quentin Tarantino). Both films brought back a ... more >

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BEST OF 2019: “Tel Aviv On Fire,” “This Must Be Heaven” and others make this film critic’s year

"Tel Aviv on Fire" (directed by Sameh Zoabi) (featured image) This Israeli film by Sameh Zoabi, an Arab Israeli, comes to us boasting a number of awards but that doesn’t prepare us for the treat of this thoroughly enjoyable and unpretentious story [...] (full review) "Pain and Glory" (directed by Pedro Almodovar) Antonio Banderas, in one of his most attaching roles ever (Banderas’s American ... more >

SUE LYON (she played Lolita in the Stanley Kubrick film) dead at 73

Sue Lyon was born in Davenport, Iowa. When she was ten months-old her family moved to L.A., hoping that Sue could help support them working as a child model. She got jobs modeling for J.C. Penney and shot a commercial that featured her bleached-blonde hair. Later, she got parts on "Dennis the Menace" (1959) and "The Loretta Young Show" (1953). Stanley Kubrick saw Sue on the show and suggested to ... more >

BEST OF 2019: Michael Apted’s “63 up” tops leaderboard

Runner-ups include, "A thousand miles behind," "Zulu summer" and "Apollo 11"

All week our film critics weigh in on a year that (almost) was by naming their favorite films “63 Up” The filmmaker Michael Apted has been checking in on a group of British folks every seven years since they were children of seven, with the initial mission being to discover both A) if Great Britain still had a class system; and B) if the aphorism “give me a child and I’ll show you the man” still ... more >

BEST OF 2019: “Queen of hearts”

(In these last few days of the year, we go back over the best films of 2019 - ed) The professional relationship between director May el-Toukhy and actress Trin Dyrholm is becoming quite important to world cinema. From their collaboration on the enjoyable relationship film “Long Story Short” to the Bergmanesque brilliance of the Danish series “The Legacy,” the two artists seem to have an ... more >