Bong Joon Ho’s rampaging metaphors – a video essay
“It’s so metaphorical,” reckons the protagonist of Parasite. Director Bong Joon Ho, the man who cast US-Korean relations as a giant mutant tadpole, is a master of movie metaphors – but does he prefer them controlled, or running wild? Luís Azevedo investigates.
Wednesday 12 February 2020
Gotta film dance! The evolution of the movie musical – a video essay
How has the tango of dancer and camera played out over the years, with changing tunes and the increasing suppleness of film language? Leigh Singer looks at the history of how cinema has visualised dance.
Friday 13 December 2019
Video essay: Maurice Pialat – three steps to magic
How Maurice Pialat forged his searing emotional dramas across three stages of artistic alchemy. A video essay by Cristina Álvarez López and Adrian Martin.
Friday 6 December 2019
A horror in the breach: Claire Denis’s Trouble Every Day
Long before she boldly journeyed to the far side of sci-fi with High Life, Claire Denis had already clawed at the inner limits of cinema with her Vincent Gallo-Beatrice Dalle horror foray Trouble Every Day. Jessica McGoff explores Denis’s violation of genre in pursuit of the inexpressible.
Friday 10 May 2019
Blackface, whitewashing and the grey zone – a two-part video inquiry
Who gets to play who on screen – and how? In this two-part video essay, Leigh Singer looks at Hollywood’s shifting but stubborn history of racial blacklisting and white privilege, then turns to the ongoing ambiguities of satire and power and today’s prevailing controversies of cultural elision and appropriation.
Friday 5 April 2019
Three Colours Silver: Europe 25 years after Kieslowski’s trilogy – a video essay
A quarter century on from Krzysztof Kieślowski’s post-Cold War arthouse landmark, how has time distilled the insights of Three Colours Blue, White and Red, asks Leigh Singer.
Wednesday 12 September 2018
Deep focus: The other side of 80s America
Amid the 1980s’ ‘Morning in America’ reckoning, the ‘high concept’ spectacles, cartoonish action and the bottom line, some filmmakers who persisted in making personal, often overlooked films that revealed the other side of Reaganism’s patriotic bluster and hollow optimism. Nick Pinkerton explores the flipside of 1980s American cinema, with a video essay by Sierra Pettengill.
Monday 28 May 2018
Women on a Bergman screen – a video essay
Swedish master Ingmar Bergman’s fascination with female experience and emotions underpinned one of the cinema’s greatest virtual communities of women on screen. In this video study Leigh Singer invites Bergman’s talented actresses and their creations into closest possible correspondence.
Friday 2 February 2018
In her eyes: notes on Gloria Grahame (a video essay)
With a curl of her lip and an arch of her eyebrow, Gloria Grahame was the actress who stood up to both Humphrey Bogart and Lee Marvin in their most violent roles. In this video essay, Serena Bramble explores the burn mark Grahame left on the silver screen.
Friday 24 November 2017
Wrapped in plasticity: Twin Peaks’ myriad Laura Palmers
Cristina Álvarez López and Adrian Martin conduct a forensic examination of the slippages at play in David Lynch and Mark Frost’s surrealistic investigative series.
Friday 28 April 2017
Hollywood icon/oclast: the art of Jack Nicholson
From New Hollywood rebel to arch Hollywood devil, Jack Nicholson has been our gold-standard baby boomer, on the run from his demons even as he upends the world – and hounds down the last laugh. As he turns 80, Leigh Singer looks back at the art of Jack.
Friday 21 April 2017
Video: Scorsese NYC
It’s complicated: Martin Scorsese’s irresistible passion for the mean streets of his hometown show us not just the psyche of a city, but the soul of a nation, says Leigh Singer.
Friday 3 February 2017
The superhero movies of 2016: brawl without end?
In the year of Batman v Superman v Captain America v Iron Man et al, snarky Deadpool, self-parodying X-Men: Apocalypse and super-grim Suicide Squad, could Doctor Strange show us the door to a better world – or at least a richer class of superhero film? A video essay by Leigh Singer.
Friday 20 January 2017
Video: A tour through French noir
What makes French film noir French? Dive down to the lowest depths with Cristina Álvarez López and Adrian Martin’s video abstract, charting six key Gallic characteristics of cinema’s most alluringly brooding genre.
Friday 4 November 2016
Hex appeal: how witches charmed the cinema
Witches are not just for Halloween, or for horror movies. Charlotte Richardson Andrews celebrates the screen’s sexier, more sisterly sorceresses: symbols of divine feminine magic and healing rather than bloodthirsty she-devils. With video by Leigh Singer.
Friday 28 October 2016
Kirk Douglas: Hollywood champ
As Kirk Douglas reaches his 100th birthday, we celebrate the dimpled one with a survey of his extraordinary career, plus a video tribute to his host of classic roles playing ruthless villains, morally ambiguous mavericks and self-interested sharks.
Friday 2 September 2016
Video: Haunted memories – the cinema of Víctor Erice
Adrian Martin and Cristina Álvarez López explore the joy and regret of nostalgia with one of the cinema’s great, spare poets of sense-memory.
Friday 2 September 2016
Video: A speck in the cosmos – the inner frontiers of Raoul Walsh’s Pursued
Tag Gallagher offers a psychological reading of Raoul Walsh’s 1947 Robert Mitchum starrer Pursued, perhaps Hollywood’s first psychological western and certainly one of its weirdest.
Monday 9 May 2016
Video: Barbaric poetry – can we really film the Holocaust?
As László Nemes’s award-winning Son of Saul forges a new way of dramatising an Auschwitz-like death camp, Leigh Singer revisits the ethical arguments around the art of the abyss.
Friday 29 April 2016
Video essay: Lines of resistance – Anne-Marie Miéville’s The Book of Mary
Counterpointing Godard: Cristina Álvarez López and Adrian Martin offer a taste of Anne-Marie Miéville’s cinema, and a look at the patterns at play in her prologue to her partner’s Hail Mary.
Friday 26 February 2016
Video essay: Kicking against the chick flicks – reclaiming the Hollywood romcom
Homogenised, segregated and stupefied, the mainstream romantic comedy has never been less sexy. Leigh Singer on how to get its freak back on.
Friday 18 December 2015
Video: Southern Gothic
What makes for Southern Gothic? Robert Greene can tell you some tales…
Friday 10 April 2015
What was documentary? An elegy for Robert Gardner
Is it time to put away this mirage of ‘nonfiction’ cinema, asks Kevin B. Lee?
Thursday 28 August 2014
Video: the art of nonfiction
Robert Greene essays a love letter to the “magical imitation of reality”.
Thursday 7 August 2014
Dear John Grierson: A Postscript to The Story of Film (rough cut)
All aboard the good train cinephilia, as Mark Cousins conducts us to lesser-visited stations around the documentary globe.
Friday 1 August 2014
The long conversation: Richard Linklater on cinema and time
kogonada looks time in the eye with the maker of Before Sunrise, Sunset and Midnight.
Monday 4 November 2013
Video essay: The essay film – some thoughts of discontent
In a world bedazzled by intractable images, do we need the essay film now more than ever? Kevin B. Lee weighs up this distinctively self-aware, searching form of cinema through both video and text.
Tuesday 16 July 2013
Video essay: What is neorealism?
kogonada pits the director of The Bicycle Thieves against the producer of Gone with the Wind on the same movie material.
Friday 17 May 2013
Video: The world according to Koreeda
kogonada on how Japan’s modern master revives our taste for everyday life.
Friday 8 February 2013
Video essay: The animal menagerie of Rhythm and Hues
Kevin B. Lee considers the digital circus mastery of Hollywood’s leading computer-generated-animal engineers.
Friday 21 December 2012
Video: Steadicam progress – the career of Paul Thomas Anderson in five shots
Tracking a journey of camera journeys from Hard Eight to There Will Be Blood, Kevin B. Lee wonders if the director has put away showy things.
Friday 16 November 2012