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    Best Films of 2015 so far (part 2)

    Picking the best movies that come out in any given year is no easy feat. With over 800 movies released theatrically, there’s plenty to digest. As we reach the halfway point of the year, we decided to publish a list of our favourite movies thus far, in hopes that our readers can catch up on […] More

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    Best Films of 2015 so far (part 1)

    Picking the best movies that come out in any given year is no easy feat. With over 800 movies released theatrically, there’s plenty to digest. As we reach the halfway point of the year, we decided to publish a list of our favourite movies thus far, in hopes that our readers can catch up on […] More

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    Disappointing ‘Welcome to New York’ feels like conquered ground for Ferrara

    There are times during Abel Ferrara’s Welcome to New York when you can feel a defiant filmmaker pushing back against the moralizing status quo. When he gives voice to trampled idealism and unapologetic carnality. Those fleeting moments of clarity make the rest of this disjointed, unfocused mess all the more painful. Cinema owes a debt of gratitude to auteurs like Ferrara and Gérard Depardieu, but there’s simply no dramatic necessity for this film to exist. More

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    Abel Ferrara’s R-rated ‘Welcome to New York’ gets a trailer

    Abel Ferrara has long been a filmmaker of transgression and contention, and his latest lewd character study is no exception. Much like a French Wolf of Wall Street, Welcome to New York is based on the life of Dominique Strauss-Kahn, a French Presidential candidate and International Monetary Fund head, in everything but name due to legal […] More

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    NYFF 2014: Artistic Differences – ‘Pasolini’

    The art and the artist are undoubtedly strange bedfellows, and while there is a vast ocean to explore in terms of this relationship, the tempestuousness rarely ever seems to get its time on screen. This is no different for Abel Ferrara’s Pasolini – a biopic about the last days of Pier Paolo Pasolini – where several times the idea is talked about, even spoken about with the same kind of verve that one would use to discuss the lurid sexual details that are illustrated on-screen, but that push and pull is not actually articulated on-screen. Pasolini was certainly a complex man, a Jack-of-all-trades in the art world, and Ferrara does an excellent job talking about this – his role in politics, his poetry, his novels, and, of course, his films – but the director spends little time showing us that influence. The biopic of an artist, I believe, begs the question of that relationship and that influence. “It’s either I kill myself or I do it,” he says about making movies. Though the film is certainly honorific, it’s not completely explorative. More

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    TIFF 2014: ‘Pasolini’ is overambitious but nonetheless compelling

    With the release of two films in 2014, Abel Ferrara has had one of the biggest years in his long and rich career. Welcome to New York, which premiered at the Cannes film festival, was a confrontational splash that divided audiences and critics alike. As the Toronto International Film Festival was underway, the film jumped back into the headlines too, as Ferrara began a media fight over the negotiation of an R-rated cut of the film, which he refused to endorse. This revelation came at a particularly apt moment, as Toronto presented Ferrara’s second film of the year, Pasolini. It seemed only appropriate that, while waging a public battle over censorship, Ferrara’s new film about a man rumoured to have died because of his art would be premiering. More

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    Trailer for Abel Ferrara’s ‘Pasolini’, starring Willem Dafoe

    Independent New York filmmaker Abel Ferrara became best-known for his low-budget, shockingly violent films that explore the roughest neighbourhoods of the Big Apple. From his 1979 Driller Killer, for which Ferrara starred, edited, and wrote the songs – to his more mainstream hits, The King of New York and Bad Lieutenant – to his most […] More

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    Greatest TV Pilots: Crime Story

    Crime Story, Season 1, Episode 1 “Pilot” Directed by Abel Ferrara Written by Chuck Adamson, David J. Burke and Gustave Reiniger Aired 18 September 1986 There are many reasons why the pilot of 1986’s Crime Story may not be great television. The 90+ minute story by series creators Chuck Adamson and Gustave Reininger never gains […] More

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    Without Theatres: ‘Fear City’ is the murky answer to ‘Taxi Driver’

    New York City holds a large cinematic history of being a hotspot for noirish sleaze, a stage for a morally ambiguous society held together by a justice system without empathy or remorse. The playground was manifested in Martin Scorsese’s Taxi Driver as a window to the subversive end to the American Dream, a place underneath the hopeful symbols of the Empire State Building and the Statue of Liberty. The apocalyptic mood of Scorsese’s revelation was transplanted into the works of Abel Ferrara, a Bronx-born local whose early focus on the deep evils of his immediate landscape labeled him a mainstay in exploitative film. After The Driller Killer (1979) and Ms. 45 (1981), Ferrara continued his narrative strength of depicting the consequences of homicidal justice-seekers with Fear City, regarded as a relative failure due to its mainstream compromises without mainstream appeal. Nonetheless, Ferrara’s transitional work still manages to translate, from a mind of schlock-aesthete, an answer to Taxi Driver as well as a foundation to Ferrara’s more self-serious works. More

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    Greatest Sci-fi Horror Films

    The concept of the sci-fi horror genre allows us to address the built-in terrors and tensions developed in society that are difficult, if not impossible, to actualize and confront directly. It has the strengths of sci-fi’s ability to question our potential as a developed species, breaking current conceptions of reality to attain a scenario that […] More

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