BAPFF: Atomic Heart (2015)

If Iranian cinema has a home, it’s the automobile. Like Abbas Kiarostami’s Taste of Cherry and Ten, Jafar Panahi’s Tehran Taxi, Rakhshan Bani-Etemad’s Tales, Ali Ahmadzade’s Atomic Heart is a road movie without any particular destination in mind, drifting idly through Tehran’s twilight streets, through conversations about atomic mothers and dormant dictators. But where those…

BAPFF: Right Now, Wrong Then (2015)

Have you ever struck out on a date because of a careless word or a clumsy gesture? Writer-director, Hong Sang-soo, ponders this quandary in Right Now, Wrong Then, a romantic-drama that plays out like a low-key Groundhog Day. The film benefits from strong performances in the lead roles and, despite some ponderous pacing, the central…

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…

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…

BAPFF Previews Its 2015 Program

The Brisbane Asia Pacific Film Festival – or, if you prefer, BAPFF, announced with the vigour of a 1960s Batman sound effect – is fast approaching, with the full program announcement arriving in less than two weeks (on the 28th of October) and the festival proper kicking off on the 19th of November. For those…

BAPFF: The Postman’s White Nights (2014)

Andrei Konchalovksy’s The Postman’s White Nights consciously blurs the line between documentary and fiction, with an introductory title card noting that the characters are primarily played by residents of the rural community of Lake Kenozero. This presumably positions the film as commentary on contemporary Russia. It sort of is; the film’s strongest stretch is its…