The Look of Silence

Joshua Oppenheimer’s 2012 masterwork The Act of Killing did not resemble a classic documentary as much as it did Apocalypse Now’s most hallucinogenic moments. That project focused on the little known 1965-66 Indonesian genocide where, with tacit American backing, the Indonesian government utilized death squads to kill approximately 500,000 Indonesian...

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Tame Impala – Currents

When Tame Impala’s first EP came staggering out of the psychedelic wilderness back in 2008, their incendiary riff-rock was either held up as a punky second coming of Cream or (perhaps slightly more accurately) as a punky, total-rip off of Cream. Songs like Half Full Glass of Wine showed a...

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Diary of a teenage girl

Lust in its first teenage flowerings is one of the great unifiers of the human race.  The sudden  rush of teenage hormones and the complete lack of wherewithal to know what to do with them effectively is experienced by everyone (barring asexuals) and there is an uncountable number of movies,...

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Some Like It Hot

Deep at the bottom of the barrel of modern comedy is the cross-dressing comedy. Miserable excuses for entertainment like Norbit or Jack and Jill seemingly created for the benefit of a hypothetical audience of suicidal cinematic masochists (basically any film where an aging comic actor swallows what pride they have...

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LoneLady – Hinterland

Label: Warp Price: £9.99 Describing a record as “an ode to nervous isolation in post-industrial Manchester”’ is really not a good way to hook in prospective casual listeners, but thankfully Julie Campbell’s (aka LoneLady) remarkable second album Hinterland is also one of the best indie-pop albums of 2015, regardless of...

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Mr S

Mr S: My Life with Frank Sinatra George Jacobs & William Stadiem Publisher: HarperEntertainment ISBN: 0060515163   “Summer 1968, the only man in America who was less interested than me in sleeping with Mia Farrow was her husband and my boss, Frank Sinatra” So begins Mr S, a what-the-butler-saw style...

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Touch of Evil

Orson Welles was not supposed to direct Touch of Evil. Initially he was just hired to play “the heavy” in a piece of stunt casting to help prop up what was intended as a B-movie.  A decade from the commercial disappointment of Citizen Kane, Welles was clinging onto his place...

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German Concentration Camp Survey

Whilst documentaries are often rife with noticeable bias or ulterior motives, it’s rare to come across a government funded effort that crosses the line into pure propaganda. However nothing about the unwieldy titled German Concentration Camp Survey is even faintly normal. Frankensteined together from footage shot by military-cameramen on-hand at...

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Magician: The astonishing life and work of Orson Welles

  “Good evening, ladies and gentleman. My name is Orson Welles. I am an actor. I am a writer. I am a producer. I am a director. I am a magician. I appear onstage and on the radio. Why are there so many of me and so few of you?”...

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8 ½

The cliché about 8 ½ is that by 1963 Federico Fellini was so out of ideas that the only topic he could explore was the experience of about being out of ideas. This is manifestly untrue however, whilst Mastroianni’s torpid filmmaker might be suffering from a potentially terminal case of...

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