To look at the collected paintings of Pierre-Auguste Renoir is to see all possible colors and textures made more rich and tactile by the light. Gilles Bourdos’ evocative Renoir is less a comprehensive biography than a portrait of the man in his golden years (played with astonishing physical accuracy by Michel Bouquet) when his output is hardly dented at all by his physical impairments.
It takes great skill to make a movie that balances potentially incongruous tones of brutality, comedy and hope. With the marvelous new movie The Angels’ Share, director Ken Loach demonstrates that he is gifted enough to do that.
As stories about sons and fathers go, they can range from the Biblical to mythological - where patricide was the norm - to the searing contemporary take on fatherhood in the new movie The Place Beyond the Pines by Blue Valentine director Derek Cianfrance.
Made three years ago but only now seeing the light of day - though there’s nary a shaft of light in it – 6 Souls is from the Swedish directing team Måns Mårlind and Björn Stein. At times preposterous and blatantly derivative of films like Paranormal Activity and The Exorcist, it’s an effectively creepy psychological thriller that knows how to twist its plot threads around viewers’ necks, and it draws you in in spite of itself.
Being happy is relative and subjective, meaning different things for different people in different parts of the world. And that's certainly the case for the resilient villagers profiled in Werner Herzog's and Dmitry Vasyukov's documentary Happy People: A Year in the Taiga, which tracks all four seasons among a scrappy group who live where few could.