The delirious cinematic dreamscape world of Guy Maddin's 'The Forbidden Room'

‘The Forbidden Room’ on Netflix, Amazon Prime, and Fandor

Canadian iconoclast Guy Maddin has been making strange, surreal films that evoke the images and storytelling traditions of silent movies for decades. The Forbidden Room (2015), which he co-directed with his former student Evan Johnson, is like a compendium of his obsessions and cinematic fetishes. It opens on a mock-instructional film on “How to Take […]

Teyonah Parris stars in Spike Lee's 'Chi-Raq.'

Spike Lee’s ‘Chi-Raq’ on Amazon Prime

Spike Lee weaves a familiar call through Chi-Raq (2015), his polarizing portrait of violence on Chicago’s South Side. Wake up. It’s been a cry and a plea since his first studio feature, School Daze (1998), and it’s particularly resonant in a film about black-on-black gang violence in Chicago, where more Americans have been murdered in […]

Franco Nero stars in Sergio Corbucci’s 'Django'

‘Django,’ ‘Keoma,’ and other great spaghetti westerns on VOD

The rich, brutal, cynical culture of Italian westerns (aka spaghetti westerns) is dominated by Sergio Leone’s great movies and especially The Good, the Bad and the Ugly (1966), arguably the definitive spaghetti western. But there is a whole legacy of cynical, hard-edged, and even politically daring Italian westerns of the sixties and seventies. You can […]

Laura Linney and Bill Murray in 'Hyde Park on Hudson,' directed by Roger Michell

Bill Murray is FDR in ‘Hyde Park on Hudson’ on Netflix

Hyde Park on Hudson (2012) stars Bill Murray as Franklin Delano Roosevelt and Laura Linney as his distant cousin Margaret “Daisy” Suckley, who is invited to the Roosevelt vacation manor to be a companion and confidante while the president hosts the King and Queen of England (Samuel West and Olivia Colman)—the first ever American visit […]