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The Big Picture Podcast: Lost in America

In this latest episode of The Big Picture podcast, Gabriel and Tom discuss and dissect Albert Brooks’ 1985 cult comedy Lost in America, about a successful but dissatisfied yuppie couple who drop out of the rat race and take to the open road. With his trademark sardonic wit, Brooks’ film takes aim at the false […]

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Features Screengems Uncategorized

Screengem: Otto’s single earring in Repo Man (Alex Cox, 1984)

In Alex Cox’s directorial debut Repo Man (1984), Emilio Estevez’s character Otto Maddox muddies the traditional code of appropriate masculinity with his brazen take on counterculture sartorial expression. His swagger and screw the man credentials are made manifest by his solo earring, seen petulantly swaying from his left ear. There is a nebulous sensuality to […]

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Features Lost Classics Reviews

Lost Classic: The Candidate (Michael Ritchie, 1972)

It’s difficult to pinpoint precisely when the political process finally surrendered to the whim of the media machine and devolved into little more than a playground trade-off centred on bite-sized slogans and soundbites. ‘Playing the game’ has become a damning pre-requisite for those who seek to govern us, as Robert Redford’s idealist-turned-stooge Bill McKay comes […]

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Features Screengems

Screengem: The Crucifix in Life of Brian (Terry Jones, 1979)

As the recent tragic events in Paris demonstrate, religious satire is a dangerous game to play. And yet comedians across the ages have often found organised religion to be a prime target. A great and daring example of this is Life of Brian, which takes on the world of the New Testament, plus contemporary issues […]

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Features Thousand Words

One Sheet: Looking at Lubitsch

The films of Ernst Lubitsch have become synonymous with bright, colourful characters and situations; accordingly, this is reflected in their various posters and promotional material from the time. Most of these posters – the comedies and romances especially – look to feature Lubistch’s central couple, often in some dramatic and red-cheeked pose, backed by festive imagery. Going […]

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Features Four Frames

Four Frames: Ninotchka (Ernst Lubitsch, 1939)

By far the most memorable moment to be found in Ernst Lubitsch’s great Ninotchka arrives mid-way through the film, where Greta Garbo’s eponymous tight-lipped Bolshevik is glumly partaking of some fish soup in a working class Parisian bistro. She is as one with the “common people”, or so she says, but couldn’t look more out of place: her starched clothes, […]

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Features Lost Classics Reviews

Lost Classic: The Rutles – All You Need is Cash (Eric Idle, 1978)

Hardly ones to take themselves too seriously, the Fab Four nevertheless provided the perfect foils for the grandfather of music mockumentaries. Before Rob Reiner’s This is Spinal Tap (1984) there was The Rutles: All You Need is Cash (1978), a Beatles parody given form partly thanks to its lead guitarist George Harrison. Originally conceived as a […]

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Features Thousand Words

Spotlight: Sex and Paranoia – Movies, Satire and the brinks of War

Anyone following the saga that is Sony’s fumbling late 2014 release of The Interview may have thought they were watching a follow up to Barry Levinson’s underrated 1997 satire Wag The Dog. The great movie satires have many commonalities and among them is the discomfort that comes from a story that seems at once utterly […]