Daily Archives: April 9, 2019

My Five Best List for Sight and Sound (2018)

Published in Sight and Sound, January/February 2019. Alas, this list was put together before I saw A Bread Factory, playing in Chicago at the Gene Siskel Film Center this coming weekend. I’ll be introducing the Saturday screening at 2 pm and interviewing Patrick Wang afterwards.  — J.R.

In alphabetical order:

Cold War (Pawel Pawlikowski)


Did You Wonder Who Fired the Gun? (Travis Wilkerson)


The Other Side of the Wind (Orson Welles)


Ray Meets Helen (Alan Rudolph)


Roma (Alfonso Cuarón)


If ties are permitted, I would add The Image Book(best experimental film, Jean-Luc Godard) and First Reformed (best love story, Paul Schrader).



first-reformedRead more »

Metaphysical Pop [THE MUSIC OF CHANCE]

From the Chicago Reader (September 24, 1993). Oddly enough, the version of this piece that’s available on the Reader‘s web site and  (until recently) here is missing the final five paragraphs, which I’ve just restored by copying them from the printed version that I still have in one of my scrapbooks. — J.R.


** (Worth seeing)

Directed by Philip Haas

Written by Philip and Belinda Haas

With Mandy Patinkin, James Spader, M. Emmet Walsh, Charles Durning, Joel Grey, Samantha Mathis, and Christopher Penn.

In an interview included in his nonfiction collection The Art of Hunger, Paul Auster gives an intriguing account of the major influences on his novels — an account that suggests why these novels aren’t well suited to conventional movie adaptation:

“The greatest influence on my work has been fairy tales, the oral tradition of story-telling. The Brothers Grimm, the Thousand and One Nights — the kinds of stories you read out loud to children. These are bare-bone narratives, narratives largely devoid of details, yet enormous amounts of information are communicated in a very short space, with very few words. What fairy tales prove, I think, is that it’s the reader — or the listener — who actually tells the story to himself.… Read more »