Currency | The Blacks (Goran Dević and Zvonimir Jurić, Croatia)

By Christoph Huber / June 22, 2010

While Edgar Allan Poe’s black cat cries its way out of a walled-in-tomb, the one quietly meowing while feeding its offspring at the beginning of Goran Dević and Zvonimir Jurić’s impressive war drama The Blacks (Crnci, 2009) remains in the centre of a trap. Quite literally—a typical offhanded reveal late in the film makes shockingly…

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Web Only | This Movie Is Broken (Bruce McDonald, Canada)

By John Semley / June 18, 2010

Like a father who dusts off his Led Zeppelin IV LP in a pathetic attempt to relate to the Black Flag pounding behind his son’s bedroom door, CanCon mainstay Bruce McDonald’s latest pitch n’ toss at the zeitgeist, This Movie Is Broken, profoundly misapprehends the youth culture it so attempts to valourize—a particularly damning indictment…

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Columns | Deaths of Cinema – But Farewell: Werner Schroeter

By Olaf Moller / June 18, 2010

By Olaf Möller In the end, Werner Schroeter’s demise on April 12 did in fact come as a surprise. Over the last few years one had seen him so often so close to death only to regenerate (it seemed) splendidly, and one began to believe that somehow things could and would go on like this,…

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Columns | Global Discoveries on DVD: Two Updates, 20 Additions, Several Extras

By Jonathan Rosenbaum / June 18, 2010

By Jonathan Rosenbaum First, a couple of updates to my last column in Cinema Scope 42: Until or unless the Ukrainian Ministry of Culture finds a way of making its awesome ten-disc Alexander Dovzheno box set available to more than a handful of Ukrainian diplomats, the Mr. Bongo edition of Earth (1930) on PAL (go…

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Spotlight | Poetry (Lee Chang-dong, South Korea)

By Robert Koehler / June 18, 2010

By Robert Koehler Lee Chang-dong’s Poetry asks no less remarkable a question than this: Can the onset of a person’s loss of language also be the beginning of a new state of consciousness? If poetry can be termed as the elimination of all but the most essential words to convey the most perceptive thoughts, then…

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Currency | MacGruber (Jorma Taccone, US)

By Jocelyn Geddie / June 18, 2010

In one of the many incarnations of “MacGruber”—a recurring Saturday Night Live sketch in which the rubber-faced Will Forte plays a hotshot operative whose attempts to defuse a bomb are always derailed by his rank incompetence (or reflexive racism)—the titular character undergoes plastic surgery to compensate for his anxieties about aging. Turning to the camera…

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Spotlight | Les amours imaginaires (Xavier Dolan, Canada)

By Jason Anderson / June 18, 2010

By Jason Anderson Though Justin Bieber beats out all other contenders when it comes to starting riots at shopping malls, Canada has developed a surprising new forte for producing well-coiffed young media sensations who seem to travel everywhere accompanied by adoring crowds. Alas, the Canadian reporters who eagerly disseminated the news of the lusty response…

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Features | The Poetics of Departure: Kurosawa at 100

By Andrew Tracy / June 18, 2010

By Andrew Tracy Gauging an artist’s relevance is always a highly subjective affair, particularly as there are any number of ways in which such measurement can be made. The lure of the new—or rather, the previously undiscovered or underappreciated—has been a potent force in cinephilia over the last several years, yielding up scores of hosanna-ready…

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Interviews | Watching the Detectives: Aaron Katz’s Cold Weather

By Adam Nayman / June 18, 2010

By Adam Nayman Aaron Katz’s films are marked by a quality that’s unusual in American cinema: his characters really always seem to be listening to each other. This sense of information sincerely conveyed and received is central to the Portland native’s debut Dance Party, USA (2006), which pivots on an extended monologue delivered by teenaged…

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Spotlight | Ghost in the Machine: Apichatpong Weerasethakul’s Letter to Cinema

By Mark Peranson / June 18, 2010

By Mark Peranson and Kong Rithdee CINEMA SCOPE: Let’s begin by contextualizing Uncle Boonmee within the multi-platform Primitive project. The project seemed to be moving you in a more explicitly political direction. Even if in Uncle Boonmee, one can—and I do—argue that the politics is always there in the background, that the communists are always…

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Spotlight | Des hommes et des dieux (Xavier Beauvois, France)

By Christoph Huber / June 18, 2010

By Christoph Huber Of the handful of promising filmmakers to emerge from France in the ‘90s, not many have withstood the test of time. While quite a few contenders seemed to disappear from view during the last decade, the star of Xavier Beauvois, who debuted in 1991 with the impressive semiautobiographical family drama Nord, has…

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Spotlight | Film Socialisme (Jean-Luc Godard, Switzerland/France)

By Andrea Picard / June 18, 2010

By Andréa Picard “The triumph of the demagogies is fleeting. Ruins are eternal.” —Charles Péguy “What appears before us is an impossible story; we are confronting a sort of zero.”—Film Socialisme “It takes strength and courage in order to think.”—Film Socialisme LIBÉRER FÉDÉRER Those words, in big, blocky white letters, lingered with me three weeks…

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Columns | Editor’s Note

By Mark Peranson / June 18, 2010

Editor’s Note Oh, the burdens of following up “Stupid, Adjective….” Once again, the time has come for me to admit that “summarizing” Cannes is a bit of a pointless task at this time of year, when I’d be rather watching soccer than thinking about what went on a few weeks ago in that dinky fishing…

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Spotlight | Certified Copy (Abbas Kiarostami, France/Italy)

By Richard Porton / June 18, 2010

By Richard Porton The lukewarm critical reception accorded Abbas Kiarostami’s Cannes Competition entry, Certified Copy, can be attributed to several factors. Some critics appeared taken aback by Kiarostami’s recasting of some of the themes featured in sober, melancholy films such as Close-up (1990) and The Wind Will Carry Us (1999) in what doubtless appeared to…

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Spotlight | Cannes 2010: The Year We Made Contact

By Mark Peranson / June 18, 2010

By Mark Peranson As violent 30–foot waves were crashing along the shores of Nice and Cannes, destroying fancy beach-side restaurants and flooding the streets, the Icelandic volcano continued to spew airplane-averting ash into the lower atmosphere, wind gusts blowing the cloud closer and closer towards southwestern Europe; this oddsmaker listed Eyjafjallajokull as the early favourite…

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Features | Listen to Britain: On the Outskirts with Ben Rivers

By Michael Sicinski / June 18, 2010

By Michael Sicinski The cinema of Ben Rivers is one of the most bracing, refreshing new developments to occur in the experimental film world in recent years. This seems rather incontestable. Rivers’ work has been showcased by major international festivals such as Rotterdam, Oberhausen, Jeonju, and the Viennale, and in Film Comment’s recent poll of…

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