Uncut Gems: “Taking It to the Rack”
The Safdie brothers explore money, basketball, and racial tensions in this manic tale of a New York City jewelry dealer’s existential meltdown.
The War of the Worlds: Sky on Fire
The first and most influential film adaptation of H. G. Wells’s sci-fi classic, this brilliantly imagined vision of apocalypse captured American anxieties at the height of the Cold War.
General Idi Amin Dada: A Self-Portrait: A Tyrant for Our Times
Rififi: A Global Caper
Jules Dassin’s atmospheric, genre-defining heist thriller combines American virtuosity with French cool.
The Organizer: Description of a Struggle
Godzilla: Poetry After the A-Bomb
Kiss Me Deadly: The Thriller of Tomorrow
Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas:A Pint of Raw Ether and Three Reels of Film
Hunter S. Thompson’s journalistic prose poem Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas used a lost weekend in Las Vegas as a metaphor for America’s season in hell. Dispatched by a national magazine to cover a cross-country motorcycle race, Thompson filed a…
One Big Real Place: BBS From Head to Hearts
Made in U.S.A: The Long Goodbye
Downtown With Jeanne Dielman
White Dog: Sam Fuller Unmuzzled
Opening Pandora’s Box
Welles Amazed: The Lives of Mr. Arkadin
Another movie, another cause célèbre: Orson Welles’s Mr. Arkadin has been dismissed as a disaster and hailed as a masterpiece. In 1958, Cahiers du cinéma declared it one of the twelve greatest films ever made—unaware that its intricate series…
Tout va bien Revisited
The first, fantastically inventive stage of Jean-Luc Godard’s career ended with the flaming apocalypse of Weekend (1967) and the events of May ’68, in which he participated both as a demonstrator and (anonymous) filmmaker. Over the next five year…
A Woman Is a Woman
The kind of aesthete who could fashion a religion out of the old National Enquirer, Shohei Imamura has a passion for everything that’s kinky, lowlife, or irrational in Japanese culture. He populates his films with murderers, hillbillies, shamans, a…
The Firemen’s Ball
The last, best, and funniest movie Milos Forman would make in his native Czechoslovakia, The Firemen’s Ball is a deceptively simple miniature. This 73-minute movie, its premise scarcely more than an anecdote, finds an entire universe in the benefit…
Ivan the Terrible, Parts I and II
A majestic synthesis of disparate forms, Sergei Eisenstein’s final film seems to be as much a ballet or an opera or a moving painting (or a mutant kabuki show) as it is a movie. As elaborately scored by the distinguished composer Sergei Prokofiev,…
Andrei Rublev: An Icon Emerges
This epic reimagining of medieval Russia was the most historically audacious production made in the twenty-odd years after Sergei Eisenstein’s Ivan the Terrible.