"Discovering how much critical documentation of the occupation existed from very early on led me to the understanding that to try to approach this question I shouldn’t necessarily be looking only at the media or the makers of it, but rather at the eyes that see that media."
The film thrives on translation, communication, and perception. Like the screwball comedies of yore, it revolves around a romantic conflict that its protagonist does not fully comprehend, though here this situation is reduced from the fanciful to the quotidian.
The first thing you should know is that Western is not really a western. Valeska Grisebach draws upon genre iconography and mythos, but to take the comparison further requires wishful, willful thinking, an act of projection that the filmmaker cannily encourages and exploits.
While the New York–set Hermia and Helena carries on the alternately fastidious and freewheeling sensibility of his previous Shakespeare films, it is the first to be set outside Argentina, as well as the only one thus far to engage with the Bard in English.
The implications of executive order Enhancing Security in the Interior of the United States recall the 1970 American independent film Ice, directed by Robert Kramer, dramatizing the resistance of a group of urban radicals in the face of an ascendant fascist government.
The setup of the film works less as narrative than as an inception point for numerous complementary and competing layers of fiction and reality, including the test footage for the film-within-a-film, scenes relating to its production, and footage of life in Tokyo.
Through documentary and fiction, Patricio Guzmán and Jia Zhangke have explored particular ability of film to record history. Scrutinizing their respective nations—Chile and China—with unmistakable seriousness of purpose, each has earned a sort of authority regarding a particular moment in his country’s life.
The plot of The Treasure revolves around people digging for riches in a backyard, lacking the means for more expansive adventures, and much of its humor derives from watching grown men bring their adult self-seriousness and anxiety to what is essentially a childhood pastime.
James Gray’s Two Lovers is an essential Dostoevsky film, engaged with many of the writer’s great themes and, crucially, illustrative of the ways that they must be reworked as they are brought into new settings—including some that would not have thrilled the author himself.