4 items from 2013
Nothing Human Loves Forever: Cassavetes’ Feature Debut Gloriously Vintage
Xan Cassavetes joins the family directorial legacy with her feature debut, Kiss of the Damned, a deliciously vintage throwback to the erotic horror output of the Hammer studio heyday. Previously, this Cassavetes was responsible for a 2004 documentary Z Channel: A Magnificent Obsession, and her fiction debut seems considerably removed both from her own work and that of the familial output. A visual feast with a killer sound design, she manages to invoke Stephanie Rothman and Jean Rollin, where naughty immortal creatures from the dark side explore a bloodlust as inextinguishable as their sexual desires.
Djuna (Josephine de La Baume), a beautiful, lovelorn vampire residing in a remote mansion in the Connecticut countryside spends her nights hunting animals in the surrounding woods and watching vintage cinema. The residence belongs to Xenia (Anna Mougalalis), an actress and older, wiser vampire, but the estate »
- Nicholas Bell
Playing sort of like the female version of Steve McQueen’s Shame comes Dutch filmmaker Sacha Polak’s film debut, Hemel, a provocative and, more significantly, non-exploitative exploration of a young woman’s confused search for intimacy through (more often than not) hollow casual sexual encounters. A 2012 Berlin International Film Festival selection, Polak’s film also captures an emotionally potent performance from newcomer Hannah Hoekstra, creating a fascinating and realistic portrait of sexuality, a rare phenomenon even in the heterosexual realm.
We meet the twenty three year old Hemel (Hannah Hoekstra), which means Heaven, in the midst of a hook-up with a man she seems to have little in common with. Exchanging hostile observations supporting hostile gender stereotypes, their banter evolves into a discussion of women shaving pubic hair, which Hemel is opposed to but let’s herself be sheared anyhow. She equates a lack of hair with pre pubescence »
- Nicholas Bell
Have you ever wondered what are the films that inspire the next generation of visionary filmmakers? As part of our monthly Ioncinephile profile (read here), we ask the filmmaker the incredibly arduous task of identifying their top ten list of favorite films. Tim Sutton (Pavilion), provided us with his all time top ten film list (dated: March 2013).
“A film of strung-together moments that make up a whole becomes not only mesmerizing, but truly sublime. I saw Ballast and decided not to give up on making a feature. The fact that people in the industry refer to this film as a cautionary tale rather than as a masterpiece is sad to me.”
“Simply, Clair Denis and Agnes Godard are one of the sweetest director/cinematographer teams in cinema, and this is their masterpiece – effortless in its rhythm and sun-baked imagery, with an ending that makes you think for days. »
- Eric Lavallee
Orson Welles Week! concludes at Trailers from Hell with Tfh creator Joe Dante introducing Welles' 1962 mindbender "The Trial," starring Anthony Perkins, Jeanne Moreau, Romy Schneider and the director himself. Franz Kafka's 1925 novel about an office clerk who is arrested for a crime that is never revealed to him becomes a nightmarish black comedy in Orson Welles' memorable adaptation. Baroque, surreal and graphically striking, it plays like a two hour dream sequence. Essential Welles. The full film can be seen in okay quality here. »
- Trailers From Hell
4 items from 2013
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