MVFF36: Elaine Stritch: Shoot Me by Chiemi Karasawa

Chiemi Karasawa, the director of this lively and brisk documentary, is an accomplished film technician; prior to this film, she worked as a script supervisor and producer for over 45 film and television projects. Her experience is evident—she and her creative team have made a confident film without a false note. It opens with a…

Cave of Forgotten Dreams (2010) by Werner Herzog

Fragility, a sense of the sacred, the long passage of time, and that elusive of feelings—awe—permeate this elegant and emotional film about the Chauvet Caves of Pont-d’Arc. Because of the caves’ fragility, Herzog and his crew were given limited and brief access to the caves – an irony considering that the perfectly-preserved caves have been…

Pasolini: A Film Series

On the heels of the retrospective at the MoMA (which was reviewed here) Luce Cinecittà and Fondo Pier Paolo Pasolini/Cineteca di Bologna, in association with Colpa Cinema and the Italian Cultural Institute of San Francisco, present more Pasolini from September 14th through September 15th at the Castro Theatre and the Roxie Theater. The exhibition is…

The Bling Ring by Sofia Coppola

Ms. Coppola has done it again, with this cool, of-the-moment film about privileged Southern California teens and the series of burglaries they successfully pulled off at celebrities’ homes. Ms. Coppola knows this milieu very well. Concisely and subtly she illustrates the amorphous definition of “Hollywood” and its boundaries (who’s in, who’s out, what’s hot, what’s…

SFIFF 56: State of the Cinema by Steven Soderbergh

The prolific and ever-curious Steven Soderbergh has made 28 feature films in his almost 30-year career, most which are critically-acclaimed and/or financially successful films: the Ocean’s trilogy, Traffic, Out of Sight, Contagion, Che, and my favorite, Sex, Lies and Videotape. And yet, in his State of the Cinema address for the 56th annual San Francisco…