Author Archives

Jim Ross

The Dissident Documentary

Glasgow Film Festival Review: Bryan Fogel’s ‘The Dissident’

“Bryan Fogel’s new documentary about the murder of Jamal Khashoggi is unsurprisingly hard-hitting, but it’s the context for macro-scale geopolitics that ‘The Dissident’ communicates so well.”

The Mauritanian

Glasgow Film Festival Review: Kevin Macdonald’s ‘The Mauritanian’

“The foregrounding of Mohamedou’s experiences and perspective — and, by extension, all those subjected to Guantánamo’s purpose — is the fuel in The Mauritanian’s engine.”

Dundee Contemporary Arts

Local Heroes: Jim Ross on Dundee Contemporary Arts

“DCA is a vital part of Scotland’s cultural landscape, and arguably a nucleation point for the city’s burgeoning renaissance.”

Prime Time Movie Film

Sundance Review: Jakub Piatek’s ‘Prime Time’

“‘Prime Time’ is at its most energetic and engaging during the early scenes; a setup familiar enough for any viewer of Sidney Lumet’s ‘Dog Day Afternoon’ or the many films he inspired.”

Land Movie Film

Sundance Review: Robin Wright’s ‘Land’

“‘Land’ is positioned as an exploration of grief and survivor’s guilt — a crowded celluloid space – but the lack of distinctive figures renders Wright’s film picturesque but fallow.”

Why Don't You Just Die Movie Review - 2018 Kirill Sokolov Film

Review: Kirill Sokolov’s ‘Why Don’t You Just Die!’

“Revolving around an encounter in a single Russian apartment, Kirill Sokolov’s ‘Why Don’t You Just Die?’ is an electrifyingly-kinetic black comedy with densely-packed homages to international action cinema and a satirical commentary about Russian society.”

System Crasher Movie Review - 2019 Nora Fingscheidt Film

Review: Nora Fingscheidt’s ‘System Crasher’

“Directed by Nora Fingscheidt, ‘System Crasher (Systemsprenger)’ features a tremendous central performance from Helena Zengel, along with superb use of editing and colour.”

Les traducteurs Movie - Film Review

Glasgow Film Festival Review: Régis Roinsard’s ‘Les traducteurs’

“Roinsard is so preoccupied with setting up the next twist that ‘Les traducteurs’ does little to establish why viewers should care.”

Son-Mother 2019 Movie - Film Review

Glasgow Film Festival Review: Mahnaz Mohammadi’s ‘Son-Mother’

“Mahnaz Mohammadi’s tale of an Iranian mother’s dilemma render the emotional highs and lows of its characters with a naturalistic clarity.”

We Are from There Review - 2020 Documentary

IFFR 2020 Review: Wissam Tanios’ ‘We Are from There’

“As a first feature, ‘We Are from There’ is an assured piece of work. Tanios paces the documentary well, and maintains a consistent and observant tone when it would be easier to lean on the sentimentality or urgency of the assembled footage.”

Brotherhood 2018 Movie - Short Film Review

Review: Meryam Joobeur’s ‘Brotherhood’

“A sharply-shot film, ‘Brotherhood’ effectively uses the short running time to question familial responsibilities/motives, and the central performances make Joobeur’s planned feature adaptation even more intriguing.”

Bait Interview - 2019 Mark Jenkin Movie

Interview with ‘Bait’ Director Mark Jenkin

Bait Movie Interview: Vague Visages’ Jim Ross discusses the 2019 drama film with writer-director Mark Jenkin.

Bait Interview - 2019 Mark Jenkin Movie

Review: Mark Jenkin’s ‘Bait’

“The experimental nature of Jenkin’s production means it might take a few scenes to really get hooked. ‘Bait’ reels the audience in, however, by casting a uniquely strange line, capturing elements of old and new cinema.”

A Good Woman Is Hard to Find Review - 2019 Movie

FrightFest Review: Abner Pastoll’s ‘A Good Woman Is Hard to Find’

“An efficient script and commanding central performance from Sarah Bolger produce a memorable film with mostly intelligently drawn characters.”

Feedback Review - 2019 Movie

FrightFest Review: Pedro C. Alonso’s ‘Feedback’

“From a technical perspective, ‘Feedback’ is extremely potent for long stretches. However, in aspiring to be relevant to current affairs, the film eschews effective simplicity for confused complexity.”

Come to Daddy Review - 2019 Movie

FrightFest Review: Ant Timpson’s ‘Come to Daddy’

“Although ‘Come to Daddy’ slightly loses while accelerating to its conclusion, the splatter of dark comedy and dysfunctional father-son dynamics is always engaging and frequently smart.”