On Film

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Swing Time: Heaven Can’t Wait
Swing Time: Heaven Can’t Wait

In their most sublime collaboration, Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers perfected a seamless blend of song, dance, and swooning romance.

By Imogen Sara Smith

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Through a Glass Darkly, Winter Light, and The Silence: The Word and the Spirit
Through a Glass Darkly, Winter Light, and The Silence: The Word and the Spirit

In this series of intense chamber dramas influenced by the work of August Strindberg, Ingmar Bergman grapples with Europe’s collective crisis of faith in the modern era.

By Catherine Wheatley

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One Sings, the Other Doesn’t: Bodies and Selves
One Sings, the Other Doesn’t: Bodies and Selves

In one of her most buoyant films, Agnès Varda captured the emotional complexities at the heart of women’s struggle to win autonomy over their own bodies.

By Amy Taubin

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Funny Games: Don’t You Want to See How It Ends?
Funny Games: Don’t You Want to See How It Ends?

With this controversial treatise on violence and media, Michael Haneke created a spectacle that is both intensely watchable and hard to stomach.


By Bilge Ebiri

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The Heiress: A Cruel Inheritance
The Heiress: A Cruel Inheritance

With the help of intense performances by Olivia de Havilland and Montgomery Clift, William Wyler turns the genteel spaces of a Manhattan town house into an emotional battleground.

My Brilliant Career: Unapologetic Women
My Brilliant Career: Unapologetic Women

A celebrated work of Australian cinema, this deeply felt coming-of-age tale is fueled by the independent spirit of three remarkable female artists: novelist Miles Franklin, director Gillian Armstrong, and actor Judy Davis.

By Carrie Rickey

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Police Story and Police Story 2: Law and Disorder
Police Story and Police Story 2: Law and Disorder

With these twin monuments of Hong Kong action filmmaking, Jackie Chan catapulted to international stardom, perfecting a unique blend of athleticism and populism.

By Nick Pinkerton

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A Face in the Crowd: American Character
A Face in the Crowd: American Character

With the current rise of faux-populist demagogues around the globe, this incisive satire of media’s toxic influence on politics is as relevant as it’s ever been.

By April Wolfe

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Diamonds of the Night: Into the Woods
Diamonds of the Night: Into the Woods

Injecting the Czechoslovak New Wave with postmodern rage and formal risk, Jan Němec’s debut feature is a merciless look at human consciousness under siege.

By Michael Atkinson

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Japón: On Seeing Ourselves Seeing
Japón: On Seeing Ourselves Seeing

At a time when Mexican audiences were taught to equate good cinema with foreign cinema, Carlos Reygadas heralded the arrival of something new with his audaciously poetic first feature.

By Valeria Luiselli

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I Wanna Hold Your Hand: All Perfectly Normal
I Wanna Hold Your Hand: All Perfectly Normal

Kicking off a career that would go on to explore the mysteries of pop culture, Robert Zemeckis’s first feature revisits the weekend the Beatles set youth culture ablaze with their American debut.

By Scott Tobias

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Some Detours to Detour
Some Detours to Detour

Obsessed with Edgar G. Ulmer’s B-movie masterpiece from the first time he saw it, writer Robert Polito dives deep into the past to unravel the mysteries surrounding a film that almost never existed.

By Robert Polito

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Wanda: A Miracle
Wanda: A Miracle

In her sole feature-length directorial achievement, Barbara Loden eliminates the boundary between actor and character, crafting a revelatory portrait of a woman without an identity.

By Amy Taubin

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The Kid Brother: Mettle Is Stronger than Muscle
The Kid Brother: Mettle Is Stronger than Muscle

There was more to Harold Lloyd than laughter. In one of his best movies, the silent-film legend deftly balanced elements of action and romance with his signature slapstick set pieces.

By Carrie Rickey

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To Sleep with Anger: You Never Know What’s in the Heart
To Sleep with Anger: You Never Know What’s in the Heart

Steeped in African American folklore, this sublime family portrait finds Charles Burnett departing from the naturalism of his early films and embracing elements of magic realism.

By Ashley Clark

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Death in Venice: Ruinous Infatuation
Death in Venice: Ruinous Infatuation

A master at adapting literary classics for the screen, Luchino Visconti made a bold choice in emphasizing the homoerotic undertones in Thomas Mann’s novella.

By Dennis Lim

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La vérité: Women on Trial
La vérité: Women on Trial

Brigitte Bardot delivers her greatest performance in what would be Henri-Georges Clouzot’s final masterpiece, a stinging indictment of a justice system run by a moralistic patriarchy.

By Ginette Vincendeau

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Shame: Twilight of the Humans
Shame: Twilight of the Humans

In 1968, Ingmar Bergman channeled his anguish over the legacy of World War II and the escalating brutality in Vietnam into the most fiercely political film of his career.

By Michael Sragow

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In the Heat of the Night: The Double Bind
In the Heat of the Night: The Double Bind

Both a landmark film of the civil rights era and a complicated artifact of white liberalism, Norman Jewison’s Oscar-winning crime drama remains a powerful vision of racial tension and intimacy.

By K. Austin Collins

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4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days: Late Term
4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days: Late Term

One of the crowning achievements of the New Romanian Cinema, Cristian Mungiu’s Palme d’Or winner combines rigorous realism with breathtaking suspense in its account of women’s oppression during the era of Ceaușescu.

By Ella Taylor

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Mikey and Nicky: Difficult Men
Mikey and Nicky: Difficult Men

In her long-unsung masterpiece, Elaine May takes an unflinching, darkly comic look at the forces of toxic masculinity that play out in an eroding friendship between two mobsters.

By Nathan Rabin

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Notorious: The Same Hunger
Notorious: The Same Hunger

In this pitch-perfect noir romance, Alfred Hitchcock explores what happens when the masks we wear in the world clash with our innermost desires.

24 Frames: The World Made Visible
24 Frames: The World Made Visible

After years of paring his filmmaking down to the bare essentials, Abbas Kiarostami delivered this gorgeous and boldly minimalist meditation on time, movement, and image-making.

By Bilge Ebiri

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Panique: Panic Attack
Panique: Panic Attack

Upon returning to France after a period of self-exile in Hollywood, Julien Duvivier adapted a Georges Simenon novel into this noirish critique of the dangers of mob mentality during wartime.

By James Quandt

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