Sunday Streams — FACES PLACES

I have Varda on the mind. And not just because she passed away earlier this year at the age of 90. Or that I just wrote about one of her best films, Vagabond. Or that the Alamo Drafthouse Sloans Lake’s Femme Club is dedicating their July screenings to the great filmmaker; I have Varda on the mind because few filmmakers have occupied my mental real estate quite like the diminutive Belgian. Her final film, Varda by Agnès, has yet to make it to U.S. theaters, but I still think of her 2106 documentary, Faces Places (Visages Villages) as the perfect swan song. … Continue reading Sunday Streams — FACES PLACES

This week in Film — VAGABOND, Studio Ghibli Fest 2019, and more

Her first film, La Pointe Courte debuted in 1955; her final, Varda by Agnès, has yet to make its U.S. release, and in between, the incomparable Agnès Varda re-envisioned what cinema could do and say. She has several masterworks under her belt, none more so than her 1985 story of a drifter, Vagabond. For those in the Denver metropolitan area, Vagabond will screen on Wednesday, July 3, 7:15 p.m. at the Alamo Drafthouse Sloans Lake. For those of you with subscriptions to The Criterion Channel, Vagabond is currently streaming alongside a bevy of Varda features and shorts. And speaking of masters, GKIDS and … Continue reading This week in Film — VAGABOND, Studio Ghibli Fest 2019, and more


Yesterday is a trifle of a movie: a light, sugary sweet confection that is delicious and satisfying. It’s kind of like an early era Beatles song: bouncy, energetic, and consumed by puppy dog love. Sure, The Beatles also wrote “Don’t Let Me Down” and “A Day in the Life,” but Yesterday — written by Richard Curtis and directed by Danny Boyle — isn’t concerned with the entirety of the Fab Four’s discography, just the silly love songs they need to tell their story. And to tell it well. The premise is as preposterous as it is magical: Jack Malik (Himesh … Continue reading YESTERDAY


“You may think you know my story,” Ophelia (Daisy Ridley) tells us. And for most of us, we think we do. She is Ophelia, daughter of Polonius (Dominic Mafham), brother of Laertes (Tom Felton), and girlfriend to Hamlet (George MacKay). But, as her ominous line suggests, we do not know the whole story. Ophelia, based on the novel by Lisa Klein, recasts Shakespeare’s mad adolescent as one of the more cunning characters in a play populated by madness. Here, Ophelia is the favorite maiden of the Queen (Naomi Watts in a dual role) and Hamlet’s secret bride. Deceit is rampant, … Continue reading OPHELIA

Sunday Streams — MAMMA ROMA

It’s funny how some movies make their way to the screen. Or don’t, as the case may be. Take Pasolini, the 84-minute biopic about notorious Italian filmmaker Pier Paolo Pasolini; directed by an equally notorious filmmaker, Abel Ferrara and starring Willem Dafoe as the titular filmmaker, Pasolini debuted at the Venice International Film Festival and Toronto International Film Festival in 2014. Then it disappeared, for nearly five years, before being dumped in theaters at the beginning of June 2019. But Pasolini is no hidden gem. The movie is sluggish and slow, provides little insight into the man and his works, and lacks … Continue reading Sunday Streams — MAMMA ROMA

This week in Film — TOY STORY 4

Funny thing, movies. Some of them hit you right up front, but then fizzle out in your mind quicker than flat soda. Others, quietly crawl into bed with you, curl up, and stay awhile. For me, Toy Story 4 is firmly in the latter. Watching it was enjoyable and, at times, quite moving. But, the past two weeks since I’ve seen it have been kind. What seemed understated at the time now seems quietly profound. Its development is deep, its ideas are full, and I’m eager to re-visit it again. Until then, this review will have to do. Naturally, I discussed … Continue reading This week in Film — TOY STORY 4


Christo Vladimirov Javacheff, known simply as Christo, is an 83-year-old environmental artist. Along with his wife, Jeanne-Claude, who died in 2009, Christo found notoriety in large-scale temporary art projects. They wrapped Paris’ Pont Neuf Bridge in 450,000 square feet of sandstone fabric; they shrouded Berlin’s Reichstag in silvery textiles; and they constructed an 18-foot high, 24.5-mile long fence in Sonoma, California out of nylon and steel cables. Art critic David Bourdon called it, “revelation through concealment.” But the passing of Jeanne-Claude brought Christo’s work to a halt. Like all artists, the number of unrealized projects was numerous, and, for a … Continue reading WALKING ON WATER


Life isn’t about finding yourself. Life is about creating yourself. —Bob Dylan Rolling Thunder Revue is Scorsese’s second documentary about the singer/songwriter from Duluth, Minnesota. His first, No Direction Home from 2005, covered Dylan’s early years up to his motorcycle accident in 1966. Less concerned with documentation than myth-making, No Direction Home is partly how Robert Allen Zimmerman became Bob Dylan, and partly how Bob Dylan now remembers Robert Allen Zimmerman. Rolling Thunder Revue, currently streaming on Netflix, picks up ten years later, in the streets of New York City during America’s Bicentennial. What does this have to do with … Continue reading Sunday Streams — ROLLING THUNDER REVUE: A BOB DYLAN STORY BY MARTIN SCORSESE