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Film Reviews

Here you’ll find all film reviews.

Cannes Review: Mads Mikkelsen burns up the screen in icy ‘Arctic’

Survival films can go either way: they can be engaging viewing experiences that expand their scope beyond their basic premise or can be slogs that never rise above the level of average survival stories. ARCTIC falls somewhere in between: it doesn’t fully engage compared to better survival films but doesn’t fall completely flat either. But watching the film, we couldn’t …

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Cannes Review: Pawel Pawlikowski’s bleak and beautiful ‘Cold War’

Pawel Pawlikowski’s COLD WAR is one of those films that you can respect but not outright love. Beautifully made but far more slight and bleaker than expected, the film features a fantastic central performance and a narrative that may appeal to European crowds and arthouse film lovers who fall for bleak films such as this one. The story is quite …

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Cannes Review: Paul Dano’s assured directorial debut ‘Wildlife’ starring Carey Mulligan and Jake Gyllenhaal

The fracturing of an American family in 1960 is at the center of Wildlife (based on the novel by Richard Ford), the superbly crafted and assured directorial debut of actor Paul Dano. While it would have been easy for the first-timer to fall prey to the pratfalls of many actor-turned-directors to overstate, underline and bold emotions and feelings, Dano’s restraint …

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Cannes Review: Kirill Serebrennikov’s arthouse crowdpleaser ‘Leto’

Kirill Serebrennikov’s LETO is a tribute to music, dreams of youth and the power – and beauty of ambition. Despite a masterful and at times stunning musical sequences, an aspect rarely seen in Russian cinema, the film scores low on characterization while impressing visually with Kirill Serebrennikov’s inventive eye and fantastic production design work. The story is strangely underdeveloped and …

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Cannes Review: A.B. Shawky’s gripping and emotional debut ‘Yomeddine’

Rarely do debut features play in competition at Cannes. In fact, of the debut features that played in the festival’s most prolific sections in its 71-year history, only two have made the cut in recent years. First was SON OF SAUL and now YOMEDDINE, an emotional roller-coaster that engages, touches and grips its audience with its genuine approach. An ode …

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Cannes Review: Wanuri Kahiu’s touching if familiar lesbian romance ‘Rafiki’

Kena, short for Makena (played by Samantha Mugatsia) lives in the Slopes district of Nairobi, Kenya with her at-home mom and politician father (Jimmy Gathu). He’s running for public office in their small area with the slogan “The People’s Choice.” She’s best friends with Blacksta (Neville Misati), a motorcycle-riding tough guy with a thing for Kena. He’s always trying to …

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2018 Cannes at a Glance

The 2018 Cannes Film Festival is this week and this page will be your updated Cannes at a Glance featuring links to reviews from myself and Mina Takla, videos, podcasts, interviews, press conferences and more. You can check out pre-festival Cannes coverage here. Follow me on Twitter and Instagram for live thoughts and reactions. One of the more interesting things …

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