ren scateni

ren scateni

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writer, curator, and programmer | words in Hyperallergic, MUBI, Sight & Sound, ArtReview etc

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  • The Women's Revenge

    The Women's Revenge

    Su Hui-Yu’s work has the disorienting appeal of a hazy dream. Droning sound, lo-fi instrumental soundtracks and static compositions lull us into a stupor. We’re awake but not, as if languidly sucked into a memory that’s impossible to recall. I spoke with Su via Skype on a mid-January morning, more than a week before sitting down to write this piece. Exposed, as most of us have been over the past months, to an endless flux of social-media content and virtual…

  • Bipolar

    Bipolar

    Growing up, I was conditioned by literature and mainstream media alike to think that a road trip was a man’s bliss. The urge to temporarily cut ties and hit the road in the pursuit of self-discovery was, in my mind, a luxury conceded only to the unafraid of the world. To a male entity unburdened by prejudice and conventions. Eventually reading Jack Kerouac’s On The Road at the age of 22 did nothing much but exacerbate the rift; so I…

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  • The Legend of the Stardust Brothers

    The Legend of the Stardust Brothers

    ★★★★★

    There are films that are like a well-kept secret. You’ve never heard of them before but then you stumble upon them in a festival programme and you can’t get them out of your head. The title sounds right, the director has a solid reputation and the few bits of plot you allowed yourself to read are just up your alley. The Legend of the Stardust Brothers ticks all the boxes.

    The story goes that in 1985 film-student Tezuka Makoto (son…

  • Days

    Days

    ★★★★

    Cinematic spaces foster intimacy. Sharing the same air with plenty of strangers during a screening induces a degree of proximity we would seldom allow under different circumstances. Films often convey a similar invitation to engage in communal acts while bridging the distance between the viewer and the actors portrayed on screen. Tsai Ming-liang’s new film, Days (Rizi), documents stages of solitude and the casual steps that bring two men together until they share a fleeting yet meaningful encounter.

    Reviewed for Vague Visages: vaguevisages.com/2020/03/01/berlinale-2020-review-tsai-ming-liangs-days/