05/26/17

Love And Marriage? Or … Lovers And Marriage?

Marriage Bared, José Reyes Guillén, 2007.

I almost abandoned The Lovers at the AMC Loews Cinema when I learned I had to choose a designated seat. I stared at the offerings on the screen the ticket-seller swiveled at me. How would I know, I asked him, if the seat I chose was not behind the woman with big hair, or next to the guy smacking down a tub of popcorn, or in front of the ladies offering continuous commentary on the action? He looked at me blankly.

Choose! I had to choose! Is nothing left to chance? To his relief, I chose Seat B3 and headed up the escalator. I told the friendly girl who looked like she would have preferred any option to ripping tickets on a sunny afternoon in New York City, that if I’d known this was a seat-assignment theatre I wouldn’t have come here and I was never coming back. Read more . . .

04/28/17
Photo: TheSultanette

100 Reasons To Love Jane

Photo: TheSultanette

Up Fifth Avenue from the Washington Square Park Arch

How have your last hundred days been? No doubt you’ve been engaged in peaceful reflection if not bored out of your mind from the lack of controversy, acrimony, and world turmoil.

No?

Well just in case you’re looking for a story about little guys giving creeps their due, The Sultanette has a film for you.

Citizen Jane: Battle for the City is the story of a woman’s fight for urban preservation but its most stunning scene celebrates destruction. Spoiler: The bad guys get obliterated.

The slow motion collapse of failed housing projects reflects the filmic elegance of director Matt Tyrnauer (Valentino: The Last Emperor). But in this latest documentary, to watch these massive structures crumple in nuclear clouds of dust and grime is to celebrate the fall of the Titans. Goliath unhinged. Money, arrogance, power … poof! Read more . . .

01/24/17

Intimacy With Strangers

Beijing Chaoyang Park, 2008, drnan tu.

Open on woman alone in cozy living room. A sudden shattering of glass breaks the stillness as a man bursts through French doors behind her. He is hooded, all in black. He throws her to the ground. She thrashes back. Vases crash. He takes her violently and disappears.

I almost left Elle after Isabelle Huppert’s first rape scene, already skittish at the thought of returning to my New York apartment, alone with the image. Yes, I did say “first rape scene” and yes, I’m glad I stayed. Because after its brutal introduction the film, this year’s Golden Globe Award for Best Foreign Film, takes an even more kinky but intriguing turn. Read more . . .