Upstream Color

Directed by Shane Carruth (2013) Shane Carruth’s Upstream Color is a film about bodies, noises, colors, identity, agency, science, and violence. It is also a love story between two deeply damaged people, who may also be two pigs. Carruth’s film — which he wrote, directed, produced, scored, photographed, and acted in — is chock full … Continue reading Upstream Color

Circles

Directed by Srdan Golubović (2013) Set during and after the 1992-95 Bosnian war, Srdan Golubović’s Circles (Krugovi) examines the long-term impact of a single act of decency amidst the inhumanity of ethnic violence. Based on a true story, Circles comes across as a sincere effort to grapple with questions of responsibility and justice in the … Continue reading Circles

Jîn

Directed by Reha Erdem (2013) Reha Erdem’s Jîn portrays a teenage girl’s determined efforts to escape the relentless violence of the three-decade conflict between the Turkish government and Kurdish separatist fighters. Set primarily in the unsettled, mountainous wilderness, the film features very little dialogue, forcing viewers to actively interpret images and circumstances as they attempt … Continue reading Jîn

Modest Reception

Directed by Mani Haghighi (2012) Modest Reception (Paziraie sadeh), the latest film by Iranian director Mani Haghighi, is a provocative piece of work that starts out in the realm of dark comedy and progresses in a more serious direction without losing its absurdist edge. Set amidst expansive, desolate scenery and bookended with bursts of experimental … Continue reading Modest Reception

In the Fog

Directed by Sergei Loznitsa (2012) In the Fog (V tumane), the second narrative feature by Sergei Loznitsa, previously known for his documentary work, is a slow, atmospheric meditation on the actions of ordinary people under extreme circumstances. Based on a novel by Vasil Bykov, the film portrays events in a rural area of occupied Belarus … Continue reading In the Fog

Sister

Directed by Ursula Meier (2012) Director Ursula Meier’s last film, Home, was a bit of a farce and a bit of a horror movie about a family whose front yard was suddenly replaced by a freeway. With Sister (L’enfant d’en haut), Meier makes a move in the direction of the Dardenne brothers’ aestheticized social realism while … Continue reading Sister