Author Archive: Mark R. Hasan

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The Russia House and the Anti-Bond

The Russia House and the Anti-Bond

February 23, 2017 | By

Review of John le Carre’s spy thriller and romance The Russia House, released on Blu by Twilight Time, and a fascinating time capsule of glasnost Soviet Russia circa 1990 + some random thoughts on visiting East Berlin in 1989.

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BR: Russia House, The (1990)

BR: Russia House, The (1990)

February 23, 2017 | By

It’s worth pondering whether this particular adaptation of John le Carré’s novel would’ve been produced today, given there is no gunfire, no a single foot chase, car chase, murder, any act of violence, and the hero’s a sixtysomething heavy drinker who describes himself as ‘a disappointment’…

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Jane Birkin for Agnes Varda x2 on Blu

Jane Birkin for Agnes Varda x2 on Blu

February 20, 2017 | By

Review of the Agnes Varda-Jane Birkin diptych, beautifully mastered on Blu by Cinelicious: Jane B. par Agnes V. + King-fu master! (both 1988).

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BR: Jane B. par Agnes V. / Jane B. for Agnes V. (1988) + Kung-fu master! / Le petit amour (1988)

BR: Jane B. par Agnes V. / Jane B. for Agnes V. (1988) + Kung-fu master! / Le petit amour (1988)

February 20, 2017 | By

After the critical and financial success from Vagabond (1985), Agnes Varda’s next project was the genuine diptych Jane B. for Agnes V., a sort-of documentary on actress / singer Jane Birkin, and the drama Kung-fu master! which was shot in the middle of the doc’s production…

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The Eternal Mystique of Cats: Kedi (2016)

The Eternal Mystique of Cats: Kedi (2016)

February 17, 2017 | By

Review of Ceyda Torin’s documentary on Istanbul’s age-old, human-feline history in Kedi / KEDi (2016), starting its run at the Hot Docs Ted Rogers Cinema.

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Film: Kedi / KEDi (2016)

Film: Kedi / KEDi (2016)

February 17, 2017 | By

Short and sweet, Kedi is an extremely well-made portrait of the inseparable relationship between the cats and human living in the portside area of Istanbul, Turkey’s ancient cosmopolitan jewel…

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Exit: Music and Saving Masterpieces of Classical Music

Exit: Music and Saving Masterpieces of Classical Music

February 15, 2017 | By

Review of James Murdoch and Simon Wynberg’s documentary Exit: Music, currently playing at the Hot Docs Ted Rogers Cinema.

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Film: Exit: Music (2016)

Film: Exit: Music (2016)

February 15, 2017 | By

James Murdoch and Simon Wynberg’s documentary on Jewish German composers who fled Nazi Germany could’ve been developed into a multi-part docu-series, but in synthesizing the specific chapters of five unique figures in contemporary music circa WWII…

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The Vice Universe: Band of the Hand (1986)

The Vice Universe: Band of the Hand (1986)

February 11, 2017 | By

Review of the Michael Mann-produced Band of the Hand (1986), new on Blu from Mill Creek.

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BR: Band of the Hand (1986)

BR: Band of the Hand (1986)

February 11, 2017 | By

When Miami Vice became a hit on TV, executive producer Michael Mann realized there were assorted opportunities to exploit the specific visual and aural style of the show in other series, mini-series, and feature films, regardless of the period setting, but while Band of the Hand isn’t tied to any characters of Vice, it’s very much a separate story…

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