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AuthorSarah Dillon

Author Archive: Sarah Dillon

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April 3, 2017

Through Twitter, word-on-the-street, and a suitably mysterious Facebook private message, I found myself packed into Unity Books on a Tuesday evening like the proverbial sardine in a tin. For what? I don’t know exactly. As a Twitter acquaintance will later quip, Nicky Hager is one of only a handful of New Zealand writers who could […]

July 24, 2016

This is not a bandwagon. I don’t think that men shouldn’t direct films. I don’t think they direct ‘bad’ films. I do think they direct most films—and I do question why. Last year, a blogger I follow semi-obsessively (she works for Rotten Tomatoes, okay—it’s the dream) undertook a challenge in which she watched and reviewed […]

October 11, 2015

★★★★½ This isn’t a review: I’m too emotionally involved. Here’s the thing about this film. I thought it was going to be a safe watch. I mean, Nancy Meyers, right? She wrote The Holiday, which I unashamedly pronounce my all-time favourite good-bad Christmas film. It started with a male voice-over, and that’s what I was […]

September 20, 2015

★★★★ Amidst the glut of contemporary Hollywood films employing excess and stylishness to produce spectacle—and, all importantly, box office dollars—lies J.C. Chandor’s A Most Violent Year, a thoughtful return to simple storytelling and minimalist aesthetic. It’s slick and stylised, with a muted colour palette and precise clean cinematography, and comes off as a carefully considered […]

July 12, 2015

½ (have half a star for trying, Fontaine) During this film, baker and all-round creepy guy Martin Joubert (Fabrice Luchini) classes Gustave Flaubert’s original novel, Madame Bovary, as “a mundane story told by a genius”. I’m not sure, then, what the rationale behind director Anne Fontaine trying to retell the same story with a contemporary filmic […]

May 17, 2015

★★★★ Parisienne icon; fashion house; luxury goods company; and one of the world-renowned labels that’s spurred countless Chinatown spinoffs—now, it’s director Frédéric Tcheng’s latest in a line-up of documentary homages to beloved fashion figures. Tcheng’s previous work on Valentino and Vreeland has been well regarded, and Dior and I is no exception to the rule, […]

May 3, 2015

★★★ I hate math. One of the best things about this film is that it’s not really about math. X + Y tells the story of Nathan (Asa Butterfield), a young boy with autism and synaesthesia who loses his father in a traumatic car crash, and, as the title suggests, is extraordinarily gifted at mathematics. […]

March 23, 2015

★★★ It’s easy to see why Sony Pictures scooped up Alice from the Toronto Film Festival. There are two key reasons: their names are Julianne Moore and Alec Baldwin, and they propel along a simple, snappy, and surprisingly un-soppy film about illness, family, and (of course) love. Moore plays Alice Howland, a linguistics professor diagnosed […]

March 15, 2015

★★★★ “God is a ruthless bitch.”—Cheryl Strayed Of all the comments Strayed (Reese Witherspoon) leaves in the register books that mark her journey along California’s Pacific Crest Trail, this is the only original one. The rest are apt but ever-so-slightly twee remarks that span pretty much everyone from Shakespeare to Joni Mitchell. Strayed’s own comment […]