Recent Articles

DVD: William S. Burroughs in the Dreamachine (2015)

DVD: William S. Burroughs in the Dreamachine (2015)

July 28, 2015 | By

John Aes-Nihil’s best-known work is the surreal re-enactment film Manson Family Movies (1984), which has its compelling moments and is fairly straightforward in structure, but this current documentary, co-directed with David Woodward…

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DVD: FLicKeR (2008)

DVD: FLicKeR (2008)

July 28, 2015 | By

Based on the book by John Geiger, Nik Sheehan’s documentary presents a pretty thorough examination of inventor Brion Gysin and his trippy gizmo, the dreamachine, a perforated spinning cylinder with an internal light bulb that mimics the sine wave which supposedly induces a dream-like state when one leans close with closed eyes, fully conscious…

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DVD: Contraband / The Smuggler / Luca il contrabbandiere (1980)

DVD: Contraband / The Smuggler / Luca il contrabbandiere (1980)

July 23, 2015 | By

As much as Contraband is affected by weak dubbing (many of the male voices don’t wholly fit the age of the actors) and a sometimes uneven script with odd bouts of humour, there’s much to admire in this rare non-horror effort by Lucio Fulci, especially the film’s semi docu-drama style, with Sergio Salvati’s loose camerawork trained on grungy Naples locales, and Vincenzo Tomassi’s razor sharp editing which keeps the film’s pacing quite tight…

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BR: Night of the Generals, The (1967)

BR: Night of the Generals, The (1967)

July 21, 2015 | By

After the massive international success of Lawrence of Arabia (1962), producer Sam Spiegel took a little longer to find the right material for his next project, and while it took 4 years for the next wave of films to materialize, his next trio of productions – The Chase (1966), The Night of the Generals (1967), and The Happening (1967) – were a mixed bag…

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DVD: Triple Cross (1966)

DVD: Triple Cross (1966)

July 21, 2015 | By

The incredible life of former safe cracker-turned WWII British double agent Eddie Chapman provides enough fertile material for a mini-series, and yet when his biography (co-authored with Frank Owen) was adapted for the big screen, it clearly suffered from the influence of the James Bond spy craze, with director Terence Young arguably responsible for the loose handling of factual material…

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Film: Deep Web (2015)

Film: Deep Web (2015)

July 15, 2015 | By

A kind of companion piece to Alex Winter’s Napster documentary Downloaded (2013), Deep Web refers to the virtual benthic layer of data – financial, private, governmental, and military – which is inaccessible accept to industry personnel or users of Tor, now an open source program originally developed by the U.S. military…

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Film: Downloaded (2013)

Film: Downloaded (2013)

July 15, 2015 | By

The creation of Napster revolutionized the music industry by a) making copyrighted music available for free; b) enabled more than a single generation to grow accustomed to the concept of grabbing commercial art gratis; c) created a peer-to-peer file sharing interface that became commonplace in rival programs; and d) created, as several interview subjects in Alex Winter’s documentary describe, ‘a perfect storm’…

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Film: Yes Men Are Revolting, The (2014)

Film: Yes Men Are Revolting, The (2014)

July 12, 2015 | By

Infamous social activists / pranksters Andy Bichlbaum and Mike Bonnano return in this follow-up to their hit documentary The Yes Men Fix the World (2009), which chronicled their often wacky efforts in mounting elaborate pranks at major international media events to hammer home governmental idiocies, corruption, and blatant hypocrisy…

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Soundtrack Reviews

Soundtrack Reviews

July 10, 2015 | By

Soundtrack reviews of Lorne Balfe’s Blackwood (Lakeshore Records), the late James Horner’s Southpaw (Sony Classics), and Penka Kouneva’s The Woman Astronaut (Varese Sarabande).

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CD: Woman Astronaut, The (2015)

CD: Woman Astronaut, The (2015)

July 10, 2015 | By

Like her prior album, A Warrior’s Odyssey (2012), film and video game composer Penka Kouneva’s The Woman Astronaut is a concept album, this time featuring original music inspired by women who’ve chosen to follow the celestial dream of becoming astronauts…

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