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The Dark Backward
You've got to hand it to first-time director Rifkin: if nothing else, The Dark Backward is a rabidly Nineties type of film. It's as though, instead of utilizing lights and...
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Film Review  February 14, 1992, by Marc Savlov
"...Starring: Judd Nelson, Bill Paxton, Wayne Newton, Lara Flynn Boyle, James Caan and Rob Lowe. You've got to hand it to first-time director Rifkin: if nothing else, The Dark Backward is a rabidly Nineties type of film..."

The Long and the Short of It
It's an uphill battle securing a future for a short film
Screens Story  October 19, 2012, by Dan Solomon
"..."That's exactly what I wanted, and I was worried that maybe it was just my weird sense of humor that found this so funny, and maybe no one else would. It was super scary to see it with an audience, but it was thrilling – they were all super into the exact same dark laugh."..."

Billy Friedkin Kills It
Extended Q&A with the man behind 'The Exorcist,' 'French Connection'
DAILY Screens  August 2, 2012, by Marjorie Baumgarten
"...William Friedkin: I had seen him in a couple of his early films, like Frailty, for example, which is much darker. But then what got me really interested in him , just around the time I starting to cast Killer Joe and was thinking about certain other let’s say grubbier actors, grisly old men, I saw him on an interview – it was either Larry King or Charlie Rose..."

Texas in Bold, Dark Strokes
Artist/Historian Jack Jackson
Books Story  November 15, 1996, by Jesse Sublett
"...And I wonder what those future custodians of the past will say when they come across things like Los Tejanos, Comanche Moon and Nits Make Lice -- especially when they compare them to the shallow and shadowy versions of the historical record that preceded them. I have a feeling that Jackson's passion and commitment to tell the story of Texas in bold, dark strokes will burn just as brightly over the gulf of years as it does today..."

How Sweet It Is
Austin Honey Company to host beekeeping workshop at Springdale Farm
DAILY Food  February 14, 2014, by Anna Toon
"... The intensity and duration of rainfall will change the color and taste of the honey from season to season and year to year. Typically, lighter honeys are spring honey and the honey grows darker and bolder as the seasons progress culminating in a dark molasses like fall honey with a bold and herbal taste..."

It Came From Beyond
"I saw my first cadaver when I was about five years old. I saw my first rotting corpse at 10." Now, at 35, Guillermo del Toro is probably the world's most promising horror film director.
Screens Story  July 21, 2000, by Cary L. Roberts
"...But even away from the theatres, del Toro's education in humanity's dark side continued. "When I was an altar boy," he explains, "we would rehearse in the crypts and look for an open crypt, and one of them contained a guy, mummified!" Later, he worked at an insane asylum around the corner from a "fantastic cemetery" in his hometown..."

Short and Sweet With Other Worlds Austin
Three micro-stories at the SF film fest
DAILY Screens  December 3, 2016, by Richard Whittaker
"..."Special Forces" screens in the Alpha Theater, Sunday, 4:50pm, before Dark Star...."

Intimate Relations
Intimate Relations is a dark, depressingly off-kilter black comedy based on “a true story.” In a small village outside of London in 1954, lodger Harold Guppy (Graves) has come to...
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Film Review  October 10, 1997, by Marc Savlov
"...Starring: Julie Walters, Rupert Graves, Matthew Walker, Laura Sadler, Holly Aird and Les Dennis. Intimate Relations is a dark, depressingly off-kilter black comedy based on “a true story.” In a small village outside of London in 1954, lodger Harold Guppy (Graves) has come to live in the Beasley household, a strict, prim, and altogether proper family unit lorded over by the dour and utterly practical Marjorie Beasley (Walters)..."

Other Worlds Austin Adds Owen Egerton's Latest
Plus sci-fi fest's closing night title, and shorts
DAILY Screens  November 28, 2016, by Richard Whittaker
"..."Blight" D: Briane Deane, Ireland, 15 min. (US Premiere) A young priest travels to an isolated island community to face a dark supernatural force that has consumed a young woman...."

The Mist
There's "something in the mist," and it's not only the beasts that bite but also the dark things that reside within.
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Film Review  November 23, 2007, by Marjorie Baumgarten
"...shores, he would shoot her himself before the Nazis ever had a chance to capture her. Some comfort, but the lesson she learned lasted a lifetime: Fear the monsters, but also beware the dark impulses the monsters provoke..."

To Live and Die in Tsimshatsui
Following his own Return to a Better Tomorrow, this is director Wong Jing's second production to speedily cash in on the current trend of gangster pictures in Hong Kong, as...
Film Review  November 4, 1994, by Joey O'Bryan
"...However, as he goes deeper and deeper into gang life, he slowly finds his loyalties torn between the police he is working for and the gangsters he has sworn to arrest. As his identity grows more and more confused, Cheung must battle both the cops and the Triads, and, in the process, discover what's most important: the law or friendship? The melodramatic plot looks to provide pop singer Cheung with his best role since the aforementioned John Woo film, and Jing's stylish direction seems to exploit all the tension and danger of dark, back-alley gang fights while not totally abandoning the offbeat humor that has become his trademark..."

Kill List
This British crime film is very dark, funny, and violent – and thoroughly unpredictable.
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Film Review  March 2, 2012, by Marjorie Baumgarten
"...Although Kill List is a dark and creepy film, it is also very funny at times. Much of the dialogue is improvised by the actors, and the banter helps give the film a naturalistic feel..."

Higher Ground
Oscar-winning actress Vera Farmiga makes her debut as a director with this film in which she also stars as a woman who struggles with religious faith.
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Film Review  September 9, 2011, by Marjorie Baumgarten
"...Farmiga, the Oscar-winning actress from Up in the Air, makes her directing debut with this film, which is based on the autobiographical book, This Dark World by Carolyn S. Briggs, who co-wrote the screenplay with Tim Metcalfe..."

For Your Consideration
Although it attempts to skewer Hollywood, this new comedy from Christopher Guest, and his loyal troupe of improv actors doesn’t have even a drop of affection for its characters.
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Film Review  November 24, 2006, by Josh Rosenblatt
"...All of which sounds about right. But it makes for a remarkably unpleasant movie experience, like you’re being forced to wallow in a dark pit of human degradation and self-loathing and then told to laugh at your predicament..."

The Babadook
Tyro helmer Jennifer Kent conjures a disturbing spook story about a mother, a son, and an unnerving presence in their house
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Film Review  December 5, 2014, by Marjorie Baumgarten
"...Things escalate when Mister Babadook, an ominous children’s pop-up book, mysteriously appears in Samuel’s bedroom and warns against a dark and evil creature who cannot be gotten rid of once he’s been allowed in to one’s home. The image of the Babadook is primitive yet bone-rattling: a sturdy, all-black silhouette appears as if part scarecrow, part tombstone..."

Cheap Thrills
This grisly, dark comedy is last year's winner of Fantastic Fest's Midnighters Audience Award.
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Film Review  March 21, 2014, by Marc Savlov
"...Last year's SXSW Film Midnighters Audience Award winner, Cheap Thrills, is a dark comedy that riffs on the ever-widening rift between the haves and the have-nots. It also plays around with the idea of the generally debasing nature of reality TV vs..."

Pieta
South Korea's Kim Ki-duk makes his most commercial film yet, but it's still full of queasy-making moments.
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Film Review  May 17, 2013, by Marjorie Baumgarten
"...Kim’s 18th film, Pieta, is probably his most commercial release so far, yet it, too, is full of queasy-making moments and intentional affronts. Pieta nevertheless reveals a dark humor as well as thematic through-lines about redemption and capitalism’s proclivity toward devouring its most vulnerable...."

Les Miserables
I should confess up front that after a cursory high school reading of the classic novel and a late-Eighties viewing of the Broadway phenomenon, this is actually my first brush...
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Film Review  May 1, 1998, by Marc Savlov
"...I should confess up front that after a cursory high school reading of the classic novel and a late-Eighties viewing of the Broadway phenomenon, this is actually my first brush with a cinematic version of Victor Hugo's sprawling, melodramatic epic. That said, this version by director Bille August (Pelle the Conqueror) holds together extremely well; it's full of rich, dark hues and excellent overall casting that's highlighted by a bulky Neeson as the convict-turned-mayor-turned-redemptive archetype Jean Valjean and Rush as the grimly determined, obsessive-compulsive Inspector Javert..."

Dangerous Beauty
When Dangerous Beauty grows up, it wants to be a Merchant/Ivory film. Too bad puberty is still such a long way off. Based on Margaret Rosenthal's biography of 16th-century Venetian...
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Film Review  March 6, 1998, by Marc Savlov
"...McCormack plays Franco, who is tutored by her mother (Bisset) in the ways of the courtesan as a means of providing family support. Due to the questionable nature of the family's means and her lower station in life, she's unable to marry the man she loves -- the handsome senator Marco Venier (Sewell, of Dark City) -- and instead spends her time as a sort of kept woman of the Venetian elite..."

Mon Homme
Love and prostitution make for a heady, disastrous mix in this new film by Blier (Going Places, Get Out Your Handkerchiefs), but it's the ribald characters essayed by Grinberg and...
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Film Review  December 5, 1997, by Marc Savlov
"...Lanvin gives the appearance of a younger Depardieu, which is unsurprising given Blier's previous work with that actor in the seminal Going Places. Big men wield big emotions seems to be Blier's point here, but those terrific characterizations aside, Mon Homme is still more of a sexy muddle than anything else, a case of too many dark emotions colliding in the Lyons twilight...."

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