a not-so-comprehensive A-Z of female directors and their highest rated films

In compiling this A-Z of female directors and their films, my measure of their credibility being only their average score from Metacritic's algorithm, problems became manifest: taking the average reception of women's films and summarising it as their critical consensus, as one example. Although this list is intentionally celebratory of women and their art, it… Continue reading a not-so-comprehensive A-Z of female directors and their highest rated films

thelma & louise (1991): redemptive violence, femininity and queering masculine space

[contains spoilers, content warning: rape, sexual violence] This essay weaves together some of the cinematic elements that animate romance, dark comedy, redemptive violence, absurdity, feminism and queer space - tethering them to the centre of the compelling cinematic universe of Thelma & Louise (1991). Callie Khouri's screenplay "I don't remember ever feeling this awake" In writing Thelma… Continue reading thelma & louise (1991): redemptive violence, femininity and queering masculine space

a brief and visual history of the cinematic camera stare

the great train robbery (1903) metropolis (1927) napoleon (1927) steamboat bill jr. (1928) rebecca (1940) lady in the lake (1946) black narcissus (1947) the red shoes (1948) roshomon (1950) rear window (1954) vertigo (1958) the 400 blows (1959) eyes without a face (1960) psycho (1960) the graduate (1967) le samouraï (1967) once upon a time… Continue reading a brief and visual history of the cinematic camera stare

rosemary’s baby (1968): a nightmare of the body

[spoilers and content warning: rape, themes of complications in pregnancy]   Rosemary's Baby (1968) fools us into believing that we are now, fifty years after its production, at a safe distance from its terror. We see a typical young, married couple move into a New York apartment building, into an apartment met with rumours of… Continue reading rosemary’s baby (1968): a nightmare of the body

space, suburbia and architecture: constructing tension in film

“There is a distinct difference between "suspense" and "surprise," and yet many pictures continually confuse the two. I'll explain what I mean. We are now having a very innocent little chat. Let's suppose that there is a bomb underneath this table between us. Nothing happens, and then all of a sudden, "Boom!" There is an… Continue reading space, suburbia and architecture: constructing tension in film

eighteen years on: behind the scenes of almost famous (2000)

18 years on and Cameron Crowe's coming-of-age drama/comedy Almost Famous (2000) still deserves celebration (here, in the form of behind the scenes pictures, as shared by Crowe himself on twitter). Although these photos originally surfaced in 2015, they are still striking for their refusal to extract the viewer out of the universe of the film… Continue reading eighteen years on: behind the scenes of almost famous (2000)

‘a nightmare fairytale etched in neon colour’: suspiria (1977) and its alternative film posters

  An innocent American ballet dancer's excitement at being accepted to a prestigious Berlin dance school turns to terror when she discovers that the institution is a cover for a murderous coven of witches. A nightmare fairytale etched in neon colour, Dario Argento’s witchy shocker Suspiria remains the most famous of all Italian horror movies.… Continue reading ‘a nightmare fairytale etched in neon colour’: suspiria (1977) and its alternative film posters