Over Britain’s documentary and film commentary sectors, Mark Cousins exerts something like an inexorable influence. Such recognisability means he’s a favourite of film festivals, such as Sheffield Doc/Fest, where his latest, THE STORY OF LOOKING, premiered as the closing night film.
ALL LIGHT, EVERYWHERE succeeds as a primer on visual literacy, always questioning its images, asking what they omit, how they are structured, how the form makes claims on the visual information it contains.
In THE EDGE OF DEMOCRACY, director Petra Costa’s camera flows through the sleek and spacious rooms of the Palácio da Alvorada, Brazil’s presidential residence designed by modernist architect Oscar Niemeyer, in slow travelling shots. As the camera traipses around the empty, noiseless halls and doorways, it becomes clear that the stillness and quietude of these … Continue reading Alvorada
SUMMER OF SOUL assumes a natural position alongside a group of the essential American music documentaries.
Taking a decidedly more casual approach to its noirish stylings than Diao Yi’nan’s THE WILD GOOSE LAKE (or even the second chapter of Jia Zhang-ke’s ASH IS PUREST WHITE), Li Xiaofeng’s BACK TO THE WHARF has a quality that could trip a viewer up on occasion.
Beneath the documentary textures of BLOODY NOSE, EMPTY POCKETS, its vérité camerawork and calm but quick editing schemes, something planned and constructed is at work. The Ross brothers transform a concocted scenario into a space full of what seems like extempore feeling and lived-in experience. Marc Nelson reviews.
That the story behind THE CHESS GAME OF THE WIND’s premiering, banning, rediscovery, and eventual restoration isn’t more extraordinary than the film itself should emphasise the exceptional nature of director Mohammad Reza Aslani’s achievement.
By comparison with Chaitanya Tamhane’s debut, COURT, the direction in THE DISCIPLE is more insistent and the style less static, which are both to the film’s benefit, and, at times, not.
The Maxi Trial, which took place between 1986 and 1992 and saw the prosecution of nearly 350 members of the Cosa Nostra, remains an abiding fascination in contemporary Italian history – and, naturally enough, in Italian cinema too.
The films Pedro Costa has made since 1997 are all testaments to a method of collaborative production. Marc Nelson reviews his latest.