The UCLA Festival of Preservation doesn't have a motto, but if it did it might be "Give me your tired films, your huddled masses of forgotten and decaying cinema, and I will breathe fire into them and set them free." Really.
Documentary director Kirby Dick and producer Amy Ziering can often be found in the eye of a hurricane. Three years ago, they teamed up on "The Invisible War," and now they are back with the equally devastating "The Hunting Ground."
An incendiary film that takes off like a house afire, "'71" is a tense thriller from Britain that so adroitly joins physical intensity, emotional authenticity and political acuity that you may find yourself forgetting to take a breath.
The Nobel Prize-winning novelist Isaac Bashevis Singer used to say he liked writing for children because they didn't read the New York Times Book Review, they just liked what they liked. The same can be said for Oscar voters: They don't care about what the cottage industry of predictors says...
I ran into a director I know at Sundance a few weeks ago, and he had a bone to pick with me, and not the expected one, about my recent book "Not to Be Missed: 54 Favorites From a Lifetime of Film."
Celebrating its 70th anniversary, "Rome, Open City" is a world cinema landmark, but that dusty, respectful word does not do justice to a film that has not lost its power to surprise and even shock.
An unapologetically inspirational Disney sports movie, "McFarland, USA" certainly sounds familiar, and to a certain extent it is. But a canny combination of elements unites with an unlikely true story to make this more effective than you might be expecting.
Silent films are always a pleasure to experience, and two new DVD releases -- one of an acknowledged classic, the other of a film that is not as well known as it should be -- are especially worth savoring.