Film Review

Live by the sword

Tsui Hark -- director of the awesome new Flying Swords of Dragon Gate -- talks 3D, IMAX, and returning to Dragon Gate Inn

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cheryl@sfbg.com

FILM The wuxia film is as integral to China's cinema as the Western is to America's — though the tradition of the "martial hero" in literature and other art forms dates back well before Clint Eastwood ever donned a serape. Still, the two genres have some notable similarities, a fact acknowledged by Tsui Hark's Flying Swords of Dragon Gate, which adopts "the good, the bad, and the ugly" as a tagline in the splashy trailer for its American release.Read more »

The trouble with demons

First-run Asian films bring sexy spirits and sad samurai to town

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cheryl@sfbg.com

FILM Suspended between the deluge of superhero flicks and awards-show fodder (speaking of, check back next week for the Guardian's fall movie preview), mid-to-late August is an outstanding time to go to your local art house, rep theater, underground cinema, or movie night in the park.Read more »

Fangs, but no fangs

Mary Harron's 'The Moth Diaries' offers a mild take on the vampire drama

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When in Venice

An author struggles with his relationships in André Téchiné's casually intense 'Unforgivable'
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Foolin'

'The Imposter' meshes different perspectives to tell one incredible true story

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The Friedkin connection

The veteran director re-teams with Tracy Letts for NC-17 howler 'Killer Joe'
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arts@sfbg.com

FILM Like many directors who emerged in the 1960s, William Friedkin started out in television before trying his luck on the big screen. Between 1967 and 1970 he directed four films from which it was difficult to perceive anything beyond a rather wild flexibility.Read more »

Do not disturb

Todd Solondz's latest, the slight 'Dark Horse,' is not his greatest

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arts@sfbg.com

FILM Todd Solondz elicits a variety of responses, nearly all of them extreme, and nearly all reasonable enough. You can look at his work and find it brilliant, savage, challenging; or show-offy, contrived, fraudulent. The circles of interpersonal (especially familial) hell he describes are simultaneously brutal, banal, and baroque.Read more »

Delta delight

Believe the hype: Beasts of the Southern Wild is poetic and enchanting

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Midnight in Woodyland

Try as it might, Allen's latest is hardly a Roman holiday

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arts@sfbg.com

FILM Woody Allen's film legacy is not like anybody else's — his imitators don't count — and is likely to grow ever more interesting in retrospect, as it becomes clear how even his (by now many) bad or indifferent movies still provided some idiosyncratic diversity in American comedy. (For the most part his few straight dramas are, face it, only really interesting as digressions from his strengths.)Read more »

Apocalypse meh

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