The Current

A magazine of film culture past and present, with new articles, interviews, and videos published every day

Bobby Womack Turns Up the Heat and the Soul in Fish Tank

Songbook

Bobby Womack Turns Up the Heat and the Soul in Fish Tank

Heard three times in Andrea Arnold’s coming-of-age drama, the R&B legend’s cover of “California Dreamin’ ” highlights the teenage heroine’s yearning for connection and escape.

By Rebecca Bengal

The Story of Temple Drake: Notorious
The Story of Temple Drake: Notorious

Often credited with inciting full enforcement of the Hays Code, this harrowing melodrama is one of the few Faulkner adaptations that successfully evokes the writer’s distinctive ambience and unsettling contradictions.

By Geoffrey O’Brien

All About Mankiewicz
All About Mankiewicz

One of the most celebrated Hollywood writer-directors of his time, Joseph L. Mankiewicz offers a window into the way he sees his characters in this illuminating clip from an archival interview.

Mother Monster: Gladys Cooper in Now, Voyager

Performances

Mother Monster: Gladys Cooper in Now, Voyager

Played with icy restraint, the bully at the heart of Irving Rapper’s classic woman’s picture is a prime example of how Hollywood melodramas shaped the archetype of the villainous mother.

By Ella Taylor

A Bounty of Bette
A Bounty of Bette

No star ever burned more brightly than Hollywood icon Bette Davis, who takes the spotlight this week in an eighteen-film retrospective on the Criterion Channel.

Among Friends: A Chat with the Directors of Feast of the Epiphany
Among Friends: A Chat with the Directors of Feast of the Epiphany

A thought-provoking experiment in cinematic form, the new film by Michael Koresky, Jeff Reichert, and Farihah Zaman meditates on the power of food and community through an innovative mix of truth and fiction.

By Andrew Chan

The Criterion Channel’s December 2019 Lineup
The Criterion Channel’s December 2019 Lineup

Check out what’s in store next month on our streaming service!

Leslie Harris’s Closet Picks
Leslie Harris’s Closet Picks

With her groundbreaking debut film, Just Another Girl on the I.R.T., now on the Criterion Channel, the director stopped by to talk about the movies that loom large in her personal canon.

All About Eve: Upstage, Downstage
All About Eve: Upstage, Downstage

Full of booze, bons mots, and backstabbing, Joseph L. Mankiewicz’s impeccably crafted showbiz drama is the rare movie where—as its star, Bette Davis, once put it—“it all came out right.”

By Terrence Rafferty

Now, Voyager: We Have the Stars
Now, Voyager: We Have the Stars

Perhaps the quintessential woman’s film of its era, this saga of self-discovery captures Bette Davis at the height of her reign at Warner Bros.

By Patricia White

Karyn Kusama Explores the Allure of Cinematic Fear
Karyn Kusama Explores the Allure of Cinematic Fear

In the latest episode of Adventures in Moviegoing, the director of Destroyer traces the roots of her fascination with genre films and the sociopolitical anxieties they often grapple with.

Charisma to Burn: Béatrice Dalle’s Incandescent Debut in Betty Blue
Charisma to Burn: Béatrice Dalle’s Incandescent Debut in Betty Blue

The young French actor didn’t require much direction for her first screen role. As the film’s director and cinematographer recall, she quickly proved herself to be a born star.

Video

John Sayles’s Closet Picks
Inside Criterion  – 4 Nov 2019