Daniel Kieckhefer

Daniel Kieckhefer


Favorite films

  • La Notte
  • Stalker
  • The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari
  • Last Year at Marienbad

Recent activity

  • Change of Life


  • The Green Years


  • The Inheritance


  • Ars


Pinned reviews

  • Stalker



    The big question mark in Stalker is its cryptic ending, where the Stalker's daughter Monkey pushes three glasses across a table telekinetically, dropping one to the floor. Until this point the film has been a strange fantasy, full of philosophical asides but never quite confusing the viewer. The ending, however, is a direct challenge. How does it fit into the movie?

    The answer is simple, but it depends on perceiving and accepting a fact which the movie appears to deny:…

  • Vertigo



    At the height of his career, Alfred Hitchcock made a film that to this day few people have ever seen. It flopped at the box office and was shelved for decades. The plot was strange - after a boy's father dies in a terrible accident, he starts following his mother obsessively. She returns his love, but he clings too hard, and she abandons him. Time passes, and he keeps looking for his mother in other women. One day he finds…

Recent reviews

  • The National Prizes

    The National Prizes


    I've read all the reviews here, and everyone misses the point*. Portabella is clearly mocking his subject: at a time when liberal Catalunya was producing world-famous avant-garde fine art (Joan MirΓ³ et al.), the Franco regime bestowed its national prizes each year on consistently forgettable, derivative, pietistic, sentimental, and conservative works by unknown artists whose prizewinning paintings were relegated to a storage closet in a Madrid museum. The film revels in the conservative architecture, emphasizes the Spanish flag, puts militaristic…

  • Ornamental Hairpin

    Ornamental Hairpin


    Without a single word of dialogue, the last two minutes of Ornamental Hairpin nevertheless speak with an astonishing precision. Everything builds to this silent final statement, but it's invisible if you watch casually. The movie has good reason to keep it subtle, considering the aggressive war Japan was waging in 1941.

    It would be easy to assume that Ornamental Hairpin was a distraction from the stress of war. Set at a mountain spa with hot springs and ancient forests, the…

Popular reviews

  • Alphaville



    During his final interview with Alpha 60, Lemmy Caution poses a riddle to the computer:

    Something which never changes, day or night
    The past represents its future
    It advances in a straight line
    Yet it ends by coming full circle.

    What is there in these four lines that would destroy a supercomputer powerful enough to govern a galaxy? Most critics brush this question aside, choosing to worry instead about Alphaville's genre classification or its superficial style. But the movie is…