BAPFF Melodrama: Early Winter, The Daughter and Floating Clouds

I had a melodramatic couple of days at the Brisbane Asia Pacific Film Festival. Starting with Michael Rowe’s Canadian/Australian drama Early Winter, through Simon Stone’s The Daughter and concluding with a retrospective screening of Mikio Naruse’s classic Floating Clouds, my weekend was dominated by the infidelities and dark secrets that define the much-maligned genre of…

BAPFF: Tehran Taxi (2015)

Intellectually and artistically, Tehran Taxi is intimidatingly dense. The third in a very loose trilogy from Jahar Panahi – following the Iranian director’s twenty-year ban from filmmaking in 2010 – we spend the entirety of the film in Panahi’s taxi, observing his passenger’s conversations about cinema, censorship and justice through a handful of digital cameras…

The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 2 (2015)

If you’re looking for an action-packed, entertaining blockbuster, you won’t find it in the final Hunger Games instalment. The atmosphere here is dour and soaked in dread; fitting, really, given we’re observing the final days of a bloody revolution. Constricted by the expectations of her role as an icon – much like the actress playing…

Eleven Days of Cinema: What to see at BAPFF 2015

The Brisbane Asia Pacific Film Festival (BAPFF) hits Brisbane tomorrow night, and any self-respecting cinephile has plenty to look forward to at the sophomore appearance of Brisbane’s annual, Asia-Pacific-centric replacement for the dearly departed BIFF. We’ll be covering the festival over the next two weeks – and you can expect to see more coverage from…

Secret in Their Eyes (2015)

Argentinian film The Secret in Their Eyes has been idling sloshing around my watchlist for a couple years now, buoyed by strong word of mouth and an Oscar win for Best Foreign Language Film. But I decided to hold off after hearing of the impending American remake starring the likes of Julia Roberts, Chiwetel Ejiofor…

Knight of Cups (2015)

It’s easy, and not entirely inaccurate, to regard Knight of Cups as the apotheosis of “Malickian.” Terrence Malick’s latest film, centring on the idle thoughts and innumerable conquests of Christian Bale’s Hollywood A-lister (think Coppola’s Somewhere – Los Angeles as purgatory), has all the easily-parodied tropes that have come to define the director’s work. The…