Author Archive: Daniel Engelke

Daniel currently resides in New York City working as a freelance writer and director. He is a graduate of the Film and Video department of Columbia College, specializing in Italian Neo-realism and French & British New Wave cinema.

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Pretty Little Liars: The Complete Seventh and Final Season

Pretty Little Liars: The Complete Seventh and Final Season

| July 31, 2017

Well, it happened. After seven seasons, the Liars finally receive their moment of relief after years of terrorizing from “A.” Or did they? Emily, Allison, Hannah and Spencer have seemingly been through it all. Betrayal. Deceit. Violence. Imprisonment. And all between the ages of 16-25. This obviously left fans wondering: just what tricks do the […]

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Bob Roberts

Bob Roberts

| February 7, 2017

Politics is again driving culture in a way unseen in a decade. If not longer. The US has once more elected a perceived outsider to the Presidency. How did he do it? By appealing to the hearts and minds with the promise of change. In 2008, Barack Obama explicitly promised “change.” Now Donald Trump achieved […]

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Accattone

Accattone

| January 1, 2017

Like all of Pier Paolo Pasolini’s work, Accattone is more pensive than entertaining. The film is a cryptic moral tale about a hardboiled pimp, meant to subtly resemble Christ, who faces trials and tribulations in Rome’s poor slums. While this could be ostensibly pleasing, Pasolini seeks to convey, again through murky allusion, the current state […]

Private Property

Private Property

| October 11, 2016

Film-noir is traditionally known for presenting society’s underworld in dark alleys with black hats and Tommy guns. By the 1950s, however, the focus shifted from mobsters to the socially disaffected and alienated drifters. Released in 1960, director Leslie Steven’s Private Property highlights the reason for this change and why, subsequently, society faced the rise of […]

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Kamikaze ’89

Kamikaze ’89

| September 22, 2016

While the work of Rainer W. Fassbinder can certainly be deemed ‘strange’, any single label like this would be too confining. In 13 years, he directed over 40 films, including the 15-hour Berlin Alexannderplatz. Fassbinder also starred in fellow contemporaries work to high regard. Wolf Gremm’s Kamikaze 89, release shortly before Fassbinder’s death at 37, […]

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I Knew Her Well

I Knew Her Well

| February 11, 2016

It is not uncommon for even the biggest foreign films of the past to get lost in the shuffle. Nor for American films, either. The original cut of Orson Welles’ ‘The Magnificent Ambersons’ has sadly been forever lost. With this in mind, it is no surprise that the world is unaware of Italian director Antonio […]

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Full Moon in Paris

Full Moon in Paris

| November 10, 2015

The defining auteur ability of Eric Rohmer is filling a simple tale with a semester’s worth of philosophy. Debates, pensive train rides, obsessions over Blaise Pascal. The director went so far as to conceive a series of ‘Comedies et Proverbs’ which, true to the title, formulated a narrative around philosophical maxims. The line in Full […]

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In the Company of Legends

In the Company of Legends

| May 14, 2015

It’s not every day that the people behind-the-camera get to share their stories. Usually fans interested in ‘the way things were’ during the glory days of Hollywood have to consult memoirs and ‘authorized’ biographies filled with too much nostalgia of remembrance and not enough memory of reality. While In the Company of Legends is full of fond […]

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Map to the Stars

Map to the Stars

| February 27, 2015

‘Shock-jock’: someone who expresses opinions in a deliberately offensive or provocative way. These are my thoughts toward David Cronenberg. Love or hate him, the films of the veteran director are always swathed in controversy. A quick Wikipedia search labels this vehicle as ‘body horror’. As some sort of mutilation or gross-out sequence is featured in nearly all of Cronenberg’s […]

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Laggies

Laggies

| February 22, 2015

How many times have we watched the ‘life journey’ relationship between the adolescent adult-male and mature boy-child play out on screen? Bruce Willis and Spencer Breslin in Disney’s The Kid comes to mind…for some reason. Laggies, starring Keira Knightley and Chloe Grace Moretz, seeks to execute this relationship in the female form. Or is that […]