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There’s no end to the pleasures and horrors the streaming services offer and this fortnight’s additions are no exception, pulling you from both ends of the spectrum. Just remember to mind the gap.
By far the nicest of this week’s additions is Aisling Walsh’s Maud Lewis biopic Maudie (bizarrely re-titled as Maudie, My Love for the streaming giant). Sally Hawkins plays the fragile painter and Ethan Hawke her grumpy husband, both excellent in their respective roles. It struggles at times to justify its 2 hour run time as it breezes through the Nova Scotia landscape, but it’s a softly shot whisper of a film that pleases and saddens in equal measure.
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Not so much a recommendation as a raising of awareness: Lars von Trier’s The House That Jack Built is now available on Prime. Polarising when it first screened in Cannes the controversial Danish director’s latest film isn’t for the faint of heart or mind. Jack (Matt Dillon) is a serial killer recounting five killings throughout his life, detailing the graphic nature of his crimes and his thought process behind each one. At times Jack’s insistence on the nature of murder being art can feel incessant but its commentary isn’t void of intellect. It genuinely and sometimes sincerely questions man’s attitudes towards women and how to choose to separate artist from art.
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With In Fabric recently arriving in cinemas a double bill of Peter Strickland’s Berberian Sound Studio and The Duke of Burgundy are now up on MUBI. Both films show the horror and seduction that Strickland is so adept to capturing. With their nods to giallo horror and a sense of unreality you’re sure to be kept on your toes. If you planning on seeing In Fabric soon then I definitely suggest you make the most of MUBI’s offering.
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You’ve been gifted the opportunity to watch one the best documentaries of the year for a whole five months with Minding the Gap on iPlayer. Bing Liu’s study of his and his friend’s lives as skaters in Rockford, Illinois is a surprisingly tender and soul-searching piece of work. He delves deep into the personal lives of his friends and how skateboarding can act as a physical metaphor for falling down and getting up and constantly overcoming obstacles in life. It also serves as a catharsis to all of life’s troubles where you can physically play out your emotions. From the off it tries to tackle masculinity and how men’s masculinity is shaped for them and how we can both fall prey to its restrictions and break free from them.
BBC iPlayer can be accessed for free by any TV license holders here.
Ildikó Enyedi’s stunning and playful My 20th Century is a treasure of second wave feminist film-making. Twin sisters Lila and Dora are separated in childhood but they cross paths once again on the Orient Express on the eve of the 20th century. Now, with the two living very different lives (one an anarchist and one living the high life taking advantage of rich older men) we get a sumptuous love letter to light and cinema. With a slapstick sensibility and shot in black and white it beautifully evokes the feeling of early moving pictures.
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Featured image: Minding the Gap
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Long and incompetent man who is being allowed to write about films you can watch from your bed.