Antitrust (US, 2001)

Great premise: Bill Gates is force for evil and open source should rule OK. And wrap up the message in a thriller format then you’ve a winner except this isn’t very thrilling. Phillipe’s lightweight (better in Crash) and the direction’s lacklustre. Robbins is suitably charming-evil but he does get his comeuppance to tad easily (handcuffs!?). (DVD)

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Dumplings (Hong Kong, 2004)

I’m not sure why I didn’t like this more. Great premise delivered in a suitably understated way (well, mostly). Somehow didn’t convince me.  (DVD)

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House of Sand and Fog (US, 2003)

Interesting premise but loses itself in a overblown (I know it is a melodrama but…). Good performances; maybe it’d’ve been more convincing if we had more of Connelly’s back story. (OAR)

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3 Iron (Korea, 2004)

This director (Ki-duk Kim) is brilliantly because he does strange things (the protagonists don’t speak in this film!) and makes it work brilliantly. (DVD)

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Memories of Murder (Korea, 2003)

Brilliant deconstruction of the cop genre (two contrasting cops (town & country) investigating a serial killing) that mixes black comedy, slapstick humour and beautiful compositions. (DVD)

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Cradle Will Rock (US, 1999)

American politics can be despairing (unless you’re a right wing ideologue) but films like this show there is hope. The right wing idea of the Land of the Free is a joke (it’s a myth for capitalists to exploit) and Robbins’ film brilliantly evokes the tensions engendered during the Great Depression by yoking an all-star cast to an all-big name historical characters narrative.

Socialist, also, in its ensemble way of telling the story. Genius. (DVD, 2)

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Very Bad Things (US, 1998)

Brilliant and subversive movie. Christian Slater reprising a Heathers-type role; he slowly unhinges brilliantly. And the way the narrative incorporates the Cameron Diaz character into the madness is brilliant. An attack on America(n mores). DVD, 2

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