The Yards Review: The Understated Richness of James Gray’s Crime Drama

✯✯✯✯½

The Yards is a very personal statement from director James Gray, but it also shows where the American filmmaker’s delicate and painterly style has found itself more fully realized. It’s a personal testament for him, especially in its own setting within the train yards of New York City – but how the backdrop even plays a big factor in allowing something so grand and cathartic to come forward also says a lot for what the filmmaker can be like at his very best. This only being the American filmmaker’s sophomore film, The Yards is a very special sort of crime drama, one whose most beautiful moments have went completely understated, yet there’s always something to be drawn into. If there’s ever a more fitting description for the work of James Gray, you can already feel as if the core of what makes his films so beautiful is there, but maybe it’s not flashy – though I think they’re better off that way. And fittingly enough, I felt convinced enough that I had for the longest time been underestimating his work.

Continue reading →

Network – Review

✯✯✯✯✯

Sidney Lumet’s Network is mad as hell and it won’t take it anymore. The mainstream media is set to do anything in order to boost their ratings, and that’s where Network still runs perfectly true even today. We already recognized the anger within Network‘s satire back when it came out and to this day, it remains one of the most vicious satires ever made, because today, the content which it shows is indeed still as shocking as it was back in 1976. The best way one can imagine a film like Network is to think of it as Sidney Lumet’s equivalent to Stanley Kubrick’s Dr. Strangelove, and instead of the Cold War, place it within the context of television news networks, suddenly you’ll get the brooding cynicism that was presented here. Continue reading →