The must-see list is long at Short Shorts film fest

May 21, 2015

The must-see list is long at Short Shorts film fest

When it comes to getting a movie fix these days, more people opt for their computer screens than venturing outside to a theater. Hollywood has countered this trend with a slew of 3-D blockbusters and cinematic largesse, but how does the short film fare? ...

Danish filmmaker's emotional, queasy 'Second Chance'

May 20, 2015

Danish filmmaker's emotional, queasy 'Second Chance'

Scandinavian countries consistently come out tops on the happiness index but Danish filmmaker Susanne Bier (“Love is All You Need”) continues in her apparent quest to dig up the darkest muck in the river bed of the human soul. If you’re familiar with Bier’s ...

Blomkamp's sentimental 'Chappie' comes alive

May 20, 2015

Blomkamp's sentimental 'Chappie' comes alive

‘Chappie” could almost be described as “Three Thugs and a Baby Bot.” Though the story raises Isaac Asimov-like issues of good vs. evil in the context of robot technology and its human creators, philosophy takes a back seat as family sentiments sashay to center ...

Urban planning

| May 20, 2015

Urban planning

“Inside Architecture — Dare mo Shiranai Kenchiku no Hanashi” is a fascinating look at the relationship between money and city planning, economy and architecture. The filmmaker behind this formidable documentary is 38-year-old Tomomi Ishiyama, a Fulbright scholar who studied at New York City University ...

As Geki×Cine raises its game, Amami goes into battle for her man

May 13, 2015

As Geki×Cine raises its game, Amami goes into battle for her man

Geki×Cine isn’t really film and it isn’t theater, but rather an intriguing blend of the two. With geki meaning “stage,” and “cine” representing film, the finished productions are shown on the big screen. So are they stage-to-screen adaptations? Most certainly not. More accurately, they ...

'Ao no Ran' is a riproaring rhapsody in blue

May 13, 2015

'Ao no Ran' is a riproaring rhapsody in blue

“Ao no Ran” is the latest in the popular Geki×Cine series. To cut a long story short, Geki×Cine is a filmed stage production, but one done so meticulously that not a single moment of relevance or emotion is lost in the translating process. What ...

Acting brings magic to otherwise flat script

May 7, 2015

Acting brings magic to otherwise flat script

“Horns” is a stewing, blood-infused cauldron of atmospheric horror — and you can expect no less from director Alexandre Aja whose track record so far is frightening (“Piranha 3D,” “High Tension”). With “Horns,” however, Aja has ventured into adaptation territory (up till now, he ...