Tag Archives: Cinema

Five DVD labels who consistently push good films

When you walk into a videostore or check up on your Netflix queue, it’s generally a crapshoot finding new movies you haven’t heard much about. Here at The Filmsmith, we’ve made a habit of letting you in on some of the underground releases every week, movies you might not have heard of otherwise. But we typically can only get to one a week, and there are dozens of others making their way to home video, some for the first time. Here’s a list of a few DVD companies who have consistently put out good films – to such a degree that if you see something released by them, you can bet it’s probably top notch stuff. Continue reading

Videogames: Fun, but no story.

When Halo:Reach was a released back in September  2010 it made almost 200 million dollars in a day.  Over an extended weekend (Wednesday-Sunday), the biggest blockbuster can only muster $125 million.  These figures, combined with growing attempts by the video game industry to become more accessible to the general public (Wii, Xbox 360’s Kinect), make it a medium on the rise.  The only problem is we have yet to see a truly great story told by this technology. Continue reading

Mercy for Monsters: Humanizing child killers and Nazis in M and Inglourious Basterds

Next to Metropolis, Fritz Lang’s M is one of his most famous films. The film’s narrative (police and criminals alike searching for a child killer), the noir lighting, its breakthroughs in sound (introduced a mere four years prior), and Peter Lorre’s infamous monologue all cement M as a classic, even nearly a century after its release.  Meanwhile, Quentin Tarantino’s Inglourious Basterds is unjustly infamous for its manipulation of history. What I find most fascinating about the two films is how they treat their respective monsters (child killers and Nazis) and how their stories reflect attitudes toward societal ills.

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Black Swan Aronofsky’s weakest

Anyone who has seen a film by Darren Aronofsky is not likely to describe it as a completely pleasurable experience.  My first experience with Aronofsky’s work was seeing Requiem for a Dream on the big screen.  It was good – but I avoided it for the next two years because of its intensity.

For Aronofsky is it not enough to show us the hardships of a protagonist. He has to actually make us feel the experiences of our protagonists.  In Black Swan Aronofsky continues to force us to suffer with our onscreen hero – and this time around you’ll be hard pressed to figure out why you should care. Continue reading

Trailer released for Terrance Malick’s Tree of Life

Director Terrance Malick (The Thin Red Line, The New World) has a new film being released in 2011, The Tree of Life.  Previously only attached to screenings of Black Swan, the trailer for Tree of Life was released online yesterday. Continue reading

The Tourist lacks spark

Just look at this poster for The Tourist (right).  Angelina Jolie and Johnny Depp’s faces take up 2/3 of the space.  You see those faces and you’re supposed to start sweating money for the studios – even when it’s not worth it. Continue reading

15 Films of Christmas (December Movie Preview)

In order for a film to qualify for the Academy Awards, it must be released theatrically before December 31st of a given year.  So December is when the drama train comes through after the pipe bomb explosion of summer blockbusters.  This year in particular, there is a lot to look forward to.

:note: Films listed as limited are those being released in New York City, L.A., and possibly Chicago.  This allows the film to receive exposure in the major markets and if it does well, get rolled out to other cities. Continue reading