Ford On Film

Chronicles of a silver screen addict

Category Archives: Reviews

Modern Masterpieces #7: Mulholland Drive

Some films demand to be scrutinised; intricate films with difficult plots, hidden details, and perception-altering twists are often watched and re-watched constantly by fans desperate to discover the film’s real meaning. On the surface, David Lynch’s 2001 magnum opus Mulholland Drive is such a film. Its dreamlike structure is disorientating, asking audiences to notice subtle hints and …

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The Handmaiden is a twisting, turning revival of the erotic thriller

Sensual isn’t the first word that comes to mind when you think of South Korean auteur Park Chan-wook. After all, this is the director behind such brutal films as Oldboy, Lady Vengeance, and Stoker. It’s surprising, then, to see his latest film The Handmaiden, the story of an orphan sent to work for a mysterious …

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Rebecca Hall should have dominated awards season for her performance in Christine

Should a biopic about Christine Chubbuck exist? Many believe the story of the young news anchor who shot herself live on air in 1974 should never be made, out of respect for the dead. A recent documentary, Kate Plays Christine, focused on the very topic, concluding that making a film about Chubbuck could only be …

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Is T2 Trainspotting a worthy sequel to one of the greatest British films of all time?

No film has been quite as hyped up on this blog as Danny Boyle’s long-awaited sequel to his 1996 classic Trainspotting. Ever since Boyle announced he was reuniting with producer Andrew MacDonald, screenwriter John Hodges, and the original cast to work on the then-unnamed follow-up, I’ve been anticipating its premiere with excitement and minor anxiety. …

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La La Land tells a familiar story in a hugely entertaining way

In just two films, Damien Chazelle has announced himself as one of the boldest, most unashamedly old-fashioned directors of his generation. After achieving Oscar-glory with Whiplash, a blistering thriller set in the unique world of jazz drumming, Chazelle is back with another love letter to jazz that’s sweeping the awards season. A full-blown musical, La …

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Manchester by the Sea might just break your heart

Is there a harder emotion for actors to portray than depression? Even the most acclaimed performances tend to be over-the-top, wailing to heaven above and unleashing floods of tears to show the audience how upset they are (see: Sean Penn in Mystic River, Halle Berry in Monster’s Ball). In Kenneth Lonergan’s incredible Manchester by the …

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Paterson is a hypnotic look into the life of a poet

Jim Jarmusch might be the most relaxed, contemplative filmmaker working in the Western world. From his early deadpan comedies (Stranger Than Paradise, Down By Law) to his take on Westerns (Dead Man), gangsters (Ghost Dog: The Way of the Samurai), and vampires (Only Lovers Left Alive), Jarmusch’s filmography has been typified by a slow pace, …

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Want to see your new favourite film? Try Divines on Netflix

Coming out of nowhere to announce itself as one of 2016’s best films, Camera D’Or-winning French crime drama Divines is a riotous, aggressive shot of adrenaline. Directed by the debuting Houda Benyaina and starring her younger sister Oulaya Amamra, Divines is distributed by Netflix, so there’s no excuse not to watch your new favourite film.

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Arrival will blow your mind and stir your soul

Despite the familial troubles of previous films Incendies and Prisoners, Denis Villeneuve has always felt rather cold, seemingly more interested in twisting plots and violence than emotion. With Arrival, his follow-up to last year’s stunning thriller Sicario, Villeneuve unleashes a powerful, surprising moving sci-fi that offers blockbuster spectacle and small-but devastating drama.

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Nocturnal Animals is all style, no substance

Starting as it means to go on, Nocturnal Animals opens with beautiful, Bernard Hermann-esque strings accompanying abrasive images of obese models posing nude. Mixing the sophisticated with the sleazy, sophomore director Tom Ford (A Single Man) has attempted to create both a classy, emotional arthouse film and a pulpy thriller. Unfortunately, he only succeeds on …

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