"The standout of this year’s [New Directors/New Films] fest is So Yong Kim’s Treeless Mountain (pictured), the highly anticipated follow-up to Kim’s debut feature In Between Days, a Sundance and Berlin award winner from 2006. When a mother leaves her two daughters with their aunt in Seoul in order to finalize a divorce, she also leaves them with a piggy bank. When it is full, she tells them, she will return. And so they wait, grilling grasshoppers to sell to local youths, and counting their change. Kim saturates her film with the pregnant stasis of childhood, and her young actors, Hee Yeon Kim and Song Hee Kim, express more depth than any of this year’s leading or supporting Oscar noms."
"Our understanding of pre-World War II Japanese cinema has been limited not merely to those few films in distribution, but to those even in existence. Between unstable nitrate stocks (used for early films), poor preservation and earthquakes —not to mention World War II — most of those films are irrevocably lost to history. Contemporary American audiences’ conceptions, in particular, are formed almost exclusively by Yasujiro Ozu’s playful formalism and Kenji Mizoguchi’s tragic heroines. All of which makes Eclipse Series 15: Travels with Hiroshi Shimizu not only an exciting, long-overdue release, but also a historically redefining moment. For the first time, American audiences will have access to one of the foundational artists of Japanese cinema, whose prolific output between 1924 and 1959 (166 films) well exceeds the combined filmographies of Ozu and Mizoguchi."
Douglas Fairbanks was the king of Hollywood in the silent era. Off-screen, he defined the dapper gentleman that was to be expected of Hollywood stars: his wife and queen was “America’s Sweetheart” Mary Pickford, and their castle was Pickfair, a palace where all of cinema’s royalty gathered. On-screen, though, he was something else all together—he was the embodiment of all the magic that the movies promised to provide.
Cullen Gallagher is a Brooklyn-based writer, musician, and curator whose work has appeared in The Los Angeles Review of Books, The Life Sentence, Moving Image Source, Bright Lights Film Journal, Beat to a Pulp, NoirCon, Crimefactory, Film Comment, The L Magazine, The Brooklyn Rail, Fandor, Not Coming to a Theater Near You, Hammer to Nail, Spinetingler, Between Lavas, Reverse Shot, and Guitar Review. He records instrumental music as Modern Silent Cinema and plays in the hardcore band Night Squad.