Articles by John

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  • Big Screen Berkeley: ‘Heartlock’

    This film features numerous elements of the classic prison-break movie, but ultimately strays quite far from the template, instead incorporating a few tried-and-true genre tropes into a satisfying storyline.

  • Big Screen Berkeley: ‘Stan and Ollie’

    The film provides neither dramatic fireworks nor a well-footnoted plod through history. No matter: most viewers will be utterly delighted by its gently humorous approach and the letter-perfect performances of its leads.

  • Big Screen Berkeley: ‘The Golem’ and ‘Not Wanted’

    Head on over to BAMPFA in downtown Berkeley to see one of the gems of Weimar cinema as well as a 1949 film that, according to its prologue, tells a story that is "told one hundred thousand times each year.”

  • Big Screen Berkeley: Favorite films of 2018

    No list and no awards ceremony has a monopoly on good film: cast your net wide enough, and you’ll find something everyone else overlooked. Here are 16 movies that impressed Berkeleyside's film critic this year.

  • Big Screen Berkeley: ‘The Quake’

    Unless you’re a disaster movie obsessive, you can surely find a better use for your time than watching this generic film with its unimpressive, barely adequate CGI effects.

  • Big Screen Berkeley: The films of Jiří Trnka

    Admirers of George Pal’s 'Puppetoons' or the holiday classics of Rankin-Bass will want to check out this Czech animator’s films, screening as a series of five at BAMPFA. Even if you're not, you're in for a treat.

  • Big Screen Berkeley: ‘El Angel’

    One of the better recent crime films concludes with an army of police closing in on its prey. Our protagonist worries not: he’ll meet it with a song in his heart, a spring in his step and bullets in his gun.

  • Big Screen Berkeley: The films of Jean Vigo

    You owe it to yourself to see the immaculate restorations of 'Zéro de conduite' (1933) and 'L’Atalante' (1934), both screening at BAMPFA as part of its 'Jean Vigo Regained’ series.