by Lawrence Garcia

#KickingtheCanon by Lawrence Garcia Film

All That Jazz | Bob Fosse

“This is the feverish, painful expression of a man who lives in mortal fear of his own mediocrity,” concludes Dave Kehr’s negative Chicago Reader review of All That Jazz, Bob Fosse’s penultimate directorial feature. And it certainly is — that’s what makes it so glorious.…

January 19, 2019
#BlockbusterBeat by Lawrence Garcia Film

Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse

Tired of superhero origin stories? Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse is here to fix that. The film’s nominal hero is Brooklyn teenager Miles Morales (Shameik Moore), who’s bitten one day by a radioactive spider and, well, you know the rest. Or at least you think you do.…

December 20, 2018
#StreamingScene by Lawrence Garcia Film

Dovlatov | Alexey German Jr.

Dovlatov observes six days in the life of the eponymous Russian writer (here played by Milan Marić), beginning on November 1, 1971. That compressed timeline suggests a film of granular detail, a work attuned to the quotidian ins and outs of Sergei Dovlatov’s daily…

December 3, 2018
#StreamingScene by Lawrence Garcia Film

The Wild Boys | Bertrand Mandico

The Wild Boys opens with a shimmering black-and-white title card, an homage to Kenneth Anger’s Fireworks, and voiceover that soon takes the viewer back to the violent origin of this delirious, gender-bending tale. Fueled by an impulse dubbed only “TREVOR” (which may stand in…

November 19, 2018
by Lawrence Garcia Retrospective

Hotel by the River | Hong Sang-soo

Even for a career with no discernable lack of winter pictures (cf. The Day He Arrives, The Day After), Hotel by the River stands out as Hong Sang-soo’s coldest film to date. Set in a curiously unfrequented hotel by the Han River, in the…

October 26, 2018
by Lawrence Garcia Retrospective

List | Hong Sang-soo

For Hong Sang-soo, whose working method and steady output has been, and continues to be, (relatively) unburdened by production constraints, the notion of artistic freedom has never been much in question. And so it is with 2011’s List, a half-hour short film about a…

October 19, 2018
by Lawrence Garcia Retrospective

Hahaha | Hong Sang-soo

True to its title, 2010’s Hahaha is very funny — amusing in ways that might even cloak its generous, searching ambition. The film follows two skirt-chasing, barely-employed Korean men: Joong-sik (Yoo Jun-sang), a depressed film critic pursuing an extramarital affair, and Moon-kyung (Kim Sang-kyung), a director…

October 19, 2018
#BlockbusterBeat by Lawrence Garcia Film

Unfriended: Dark Web | Stephen Susco

It could be that Stephen Susco, the first-time director of improbable horror-sequel Unfriended: Dark Web, is just a previously-undistinguished virtuoso, here aided by a team of tech wizards. More likely, it’s that the film’s text (i.e., the “dark web” of the Internet) is so…

July 20, 2018
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