Cinema

​Triet Dissects the Life and Death of a Marriage in “Anatomy of a Fall”

January 18th, 2024

Now playing at the Fargo Theatre.

By Greg Carlson

gregcarlson1@gmail.com

Palme d’Or recipient “Anatomy of a Fall” is now enjoying an award-season victory tour, recently picking up Golden Globe wins for both screenplay and foreign language film as well as the National Board of Review’s prize for Best International Film. Oscar nominations should be forthcoming. Filmmaker Justine Triet, who wrote the script with partner and collaborator Arthur Harari, expertly uses the framework of…

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‘Tuesday’ Heartbreak: Pusić Contemplates the End

June 17th, 2024

Daina Pusić’s feature narrative debut “Tuesday” premiered at the 2023 Telluride Film Festival last September. A joint production of A24, BBC Film and the British Film Institute, the movie stars Julia Louis-Dreyfus and Lola Petticrew as mother and child on a journey toward the death of the latter from a terminal illness. In an unorthodox bit of character design, the principal performers are joined by the manifestation of Death as a CGI-enhanced macaw voiced with a gravelly rasp by…

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Schoenbrun finds the signal in ‘I Saw the TV Glow’

June 17th, 2024

By Greg Carlson

gregcarlson1@gmail.com

In their previous feature, the 2021 Sundance Film Festival Next selection “We’re All Going to the World’s Fair,” director Jane Schoenbrun shaped the raw materials of electronically-mediated internet communication to explore thresholds, boundaries, and the construction of identities. “I Saw the TV Glow,” while no less raw and unsettling, marks a significant step in the filmmaker’s evolution, shifting from the more directly participatory…

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​Idea Man: Howard Makes Rainbow Connection to Icon Jim Henson

June 3rd, 2024

By Greg Carlson

gregcarlson1@gmail.com

A more than serviceable portrait of the beloved artist, “Jim Henson: Idea Man” debuts on Disney+ this weekend. As organized by director Ron Howard, the documentary presents a primarily chronological overview of career highlights mixed with behind-the-scenes considerations of children and marriage. While the latter component is sanitized — predictably, given the full participation and cooperation of the Henson family — Howard circles the…

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​Adlon Looks for Pregnant Laughs in Feature Directorial Debut ‘Babes’

June 1st, 2024

By Greg Carlson

gregcarlson1@gmail.com

Ilana Glazer is the co-writer and co-star of director Pamela Adlon’s comedy “Babes,” an appealing, if familiar, buddy movie that builds around the ups and downs of an unexpected pregnancy. The busy Glazer, best known for “Broad City,” returns to the general thematic territory she explored in the 2021 horror film “False Positive” (for which she also served as performer and co-screenwriter), trading the dread – if not the anxiety –…

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​‘Handling the Undead’: Hvistendahl Debuts With Elevated Horror

May 20th, 2024

By Greg Carlson

gregcarlson1@gmail.com

Horror fans who loved director Tomas Alfredson’s terrific 2008 adaptation of John Ajvide Lindkvist’s vampire novel “Let the Right One In” will find much to appreciate about “Handling the Undead.” Based on Lindkvist’s second book, Norwegian filmmaker Thea Hvistendahl’s movie reimagines the slow zombie premise with a seemingly contradictory blend of the elegant and the macabre. An instant classic right at home within the popular…

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Rohrwacher Excavates ‘La Chimera’

May 15th, 2024

By Greg Carlson

gregcarlson1@gmail.com

Now available to stream following a quiet and disappointing North American theatrical release, filmmaker Alice Rohrwacher’s “La Chimera” should not be missed. Josh O’Connor, whose recent work for another Italian director in “Challengers” has been more widely seen, gives an equally compelling performance alongside a supporting cast worthy of Fellini. Expanding the remarkably personal storytelling developed since feature narrative debut…

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It’s a Death Defyin’ Life: ‘The Fall Guy’

May 6th, 2024

The undeniable chemistry between stars Emily Blunt and Ryan Gosling in David Leitch’s “The Fall Guy” is a significant selling point in what is surely one of the most heavily marketed movies of the year. A mashup of the rom-com and the action/crime thriller, Leitch’s latest is an inside-baseball wink and a frisky and frolicsome spree that gets a lot of mileage from its additional genre status as a movie-quoting Hollywood metanarrative. Loosely based on the 1981 to 1986 ABC series…

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​I told ya: Guadagnino Serves Up ‘Challengers’

April 30th, 2024

By Greg Carlson

gregcarlson1@gmail.com

“I’m not a homewrecker,” insists Zendaya’s Tashi Duncan as she prematurely ends a three-way encounter involving doubles partners and best pals Art Donaldson (Mike Faist) and Patrick Zweig (Josh O’Connor). Tashi’s instincts will hold serve throughout Luca Guadagnino’s sweaty, sexy, and ridiculously entertaining “Challengers.” Guadagnino’s fascinating, enviable filmography is stocked with triumphs large and small. From 2009…

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​‘Sasquatch Sunset’ glows with the witty touch of the Zellner brothers

April 22nd, 2024

By Greg Carlson

gregcarlson1@gmail.com

Surely one of the year’s unlikeliest and most wondrous theatrical experiences, “Sasquatch Sunset,” from beloved indie storytellers David and Nathan Zellner, premiered at the Sundance Film Festival to a range of critical responses that match the breadth of the film’s own expansive agenda. Following a quartet of hairy hominids — of the familiar bipedal cryptid sort that has fueled legends of Bigfoot and Yeti in cultures around the world — …

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