Review no 110: film A Screaming Man (Chad)

NORTH AFRICA (In French and Arabic with English subtitles) This October, during Black History Month in the UK, Africa in Motion (Scotland), Afrika Eye (Bristol), the Cambridge African Film Festival (CAFF), Film Africa (London) and Watch-Africa Cymru (Wales) have all come together to provide an opportunity to watch some of the best African films of the past […]

Review no 83: Syrian feature documentary ‘For Sama’

I watched For Sama (2019) on All 4, knowing only that it was an Oscar-nominated film about the Syrian conflict, dedicated to the baby daughter of the journalist and film maker Waad al-Kateab (and co-directed by Edward Watts). I expected it to be harrowing, but I was unprepared for how gripping and powerful the film […]

Review no 82: The Great Beauty (La Grande Bellezza): a film by Paolo Sorrentino (Italy)

EUROPE “To this question, as kids, my friends always gave the same answer. “Pussy.” Whereas I answered, “the smell of old people’s houses”. The question was: “What do you like most, really, in life?” I was destined for sensibility. I was destined to become a writer. I was destined to become Jep Gambardella.“ The Great […]

Review no 76: Loveless (Russian film)

EUROPE Loveless (2017) is a relentlessly bleak Russian film, directed and co-written by Andrei Zvyagintsev. It’s a bit like a Mike Leigh film, but imagine one devoid of humour or any base-level sense of human connection and goodness. Warring couple Zhelya and Boris are breaking up, with little consideration for their 12-year-old son, who they […]

Review no 72: Gloria: film by Sebastián Lelio (Chile)

AMERICAS AND THE CARIBBEAN Gloria was released in 2013, and is co-written and directed by Sebastián Lelio. The movie tells the story of a late middle-aged woman who embarks on a conflicted romance with an older man. She’s feeling lonely – her children are independent, although you have the sense that their lives are not […]