Films Indexed

An alphabetical index of films reviewed on Culture Wars, the online review. Choose a letter below to browse by title, and click on any film title below for more information... Or just select one of the five most recent films.

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 Paul Robeson: Portraits Of The Artist (2007)
  • Director: Various directors
  • Year: 2007

A knowing bow

The Emperor Jones is not a great film, and its source play is not a great work of drama, but both are important, and both have small moments of greatness - in the film’s case, mainly through the titanic presence of Robeson subverting some of the well-intended, but ultimately destructive, tendencies of O’Neill’s character portrayal.

Saturday, February 04, 2012

 Wuthering Heights (2011)
  • Director: Andrea Arnold
  • Year: 2011

Far from decorous

Instead of a conscience Catherine and Heathcliff have instinct. They are not overthrown by passion, there is nothing so transcendent as that. What they are to each other is a matter of survival, it is hell without the glamour. Their play is mixed with violence and their tenderness touches on savagery. There is no drama to their desire.

Friday, December 02, 2011

 Amen. (2005)
  • Director: Costa-Gavras
  • Year: 2005

Politics without condescension

The word ‘amen’ is the ending to most prayers, and in its original meaning, in Hebrew, it means ‘as it goes’ or ‘so be it’. The fact that the title also includes the definitive period sets up the tension of the film, which follows the lives of two non-Jewish men in Germany, who try to subvert the Nazi death camp machine. But, as in most little man vs. faceless corporation tales, the two little men are crushed.

Friday, November 11, 2011

 Contagion (2011)
  • Director: Steven Soderbergh
  • Year: 2011

 General Idi Amin Dada - Autoportrait (1974)
  • Director: Barbet Schroeder
  • Year: 1974

One of a kind

When the film premiered, it was actually taken as a comedy, and Amin was furious, and threatened to kill all French citizens living in Uganda unless Schroeder cut requested parts. Schroeder did, but restored the film once Amin went into exile. The whole project was apparently Amin’s idea - a sort of vanity hagiography because he felt he was not respected in the West.

Wednesday, August 31, 2011