Archive for 'Podcasts'

Yi Yi

As the title to Edward Yang’s masterpiece indicates, Yi Yi is a series of doubles; narrative, thematic, visual and aural, that deliver a subtle family portrait.

Die Hard

What makes a classic film? The plot’s originality, director’s vision, or the star’s magnetism? Paradoxically, any, all, yet none of the above. It’s the audience.

Cries and Whispers

Cries and Whispers was Ingmar Bergman’s fourth colour film but with a palette of just black, white and red, he still painted deep emotions and vivid dreams.

2001: A Space Odyssey

For all of 2001’s groundbreaking special effects and narrative innovation, Stanley Kubrick owes a bit of debt to a romantic fantasy and a Soviet propaganda film.

Battleship Potemkin

Sergei Eisenstein devised montage for black and white and silent film. How have the elements of sound, colour and digital cinema extended his theories?

The Cook the Thief his Wife & her Lover

First seen as an eviscerating critique of Thatcherism, 30 years on it belongs with the MeToo and Time’s Up movements.

The Marriage of Maria Braun

In The Marriage of Maria Braun, Rainer Werner Fassbinder mixed Hollywood melodrama, historical drama and political indictment.

Letter from an Unknown Woman

Max Ophuls’ adaptation of Stefan Zweig’s novella is more than a romance; it explores memory, delusion and the meaning of art.

Investigation of a Citizen above Suspicion

Elio Petri’s bitterly satirical Oscar winner from 1970 cuts a stark picture of today’s political leaders.

McCabe & Mrs. Miller

Released in 1971, critics bracketed Robert Altman’s McCabe and Mrs. Miller as a revisionist western. Truth is, the western has always been revising itself.

Les Diaboliques

Often called the greatest thriller Hitchcock never made, Les Diaboliques is based on a book written to catch the attention of the Master of Suspense.

Peeping Tom

Reviled upon its release and long out of circulation, the influence of Michael Powell’s Peeping Tom is now to be found in the most unexpected places.

Pandora’s Box

There has never been a more iconic and influential hairstyle in all of cinema than ‘the black helmet’ sported by Louise Brooks in Pandora’s Box.

The Ladykillers (1955)

Alec Guinness, Peter Sellers and Herbert Lom may star, yet it is Katie Johnson who gives one of cinema’s greatest ever comedic performances.

Wadjda

Precious few films celebrate the joys of riding a bike. Haifaa Al Mansour’s Wadjda is more than just a celebration; it is a dissection of an entire culture.

Easy Rider

Upon its release, it seemed that Easy Rider typified the spirit of the nineteen-sixties. But it really should be viewed as the first film of the seventies.

Bicycle Thieves

Many films enjoy exaggerated reputations, but it is almost impossible to underestimate the beauty, truth and importance of Vittorio De Sica’s Bicycle Thieves.

Blow Out

Rear Window, Vertigo, Blowup, Weekend, the Zapruder film and The Conversation are all to be seen and heard in Brian De Palma’s Blow Out.

The Gospel According to Matthew

How did a blasphemous, homosexual, Marxist, atheist manage to make the greatest film about the life of Jesus Christ?

Blowup

Originally titled A Girl, a Photographer and a Beautiful April Morning, Michelangelo Antonioni’s Palme d’Or winner is still as enigmatic fifty years on.

Festen

William Shakespeare, Sigmund Freud, Ingmar Bergman and John Cassavetes are just some of the disparate influences on view in Thomas Vinterberg’s masterpiece.

Alien

We are told we watch horror films because they offer a vicariously thrilling, and thus safe experience. I don’t believe that. I believe horror films are instructive.

The Wages of Fear

Described as the most evil film ever made, Henri George Clouzot’s masterpiece resembles Hemingway, Hitchcock, neo-realism and Casablanca.

The Fly (1986)

David Cronenberg’s adaptation of George Langelaan’s short story is appropriately, a fusion of Icarus, Prometheus, Frankenstein and Beauty and the Beast.

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