The Ascent (Day 81)

My Opinion: 8.8 || Very powerful movie. Starts well and just keeps getting better. Deserves to be high on anyone’s list of great films about war, courage, and sacrifice (and deep, deep cold).

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La Jetée (Day 80)

My Opinion: 7.3 || High marks for the number of stimulating ideas packed into 28 minutes and for the uniqueness of the vision. But the experimental structure is just as limiting as it is… Continue reading

Cell 211 (Day 79)

My Opinion: 6.9 || Thrilling first hour that leads to a disappointingly strained and messy second half — too many developments that smell like a screenwriter’s outline. Even with those flaws, though, it’s a… Continue reading

Good Bye Lenin! (Day 78)

My Opinion: 7.0 || A well-balanced comedy/drama that captures German unification with rich period detail. The plot itself requires some suspension of disbelief, but it’s an interesting, lightly funny, and affectionate film.

Revanche (Day 77)

My Opinion: 8.0 || Starts as a thriller before evolving into a meditative character study. Some character turns give you pause, but the tone is beautifully calibrated, and the conclusion arrives with subtle power.

The Girl on the Bridge (Day 76)

My Opinion: 8.2 || Charming romantic comedy — a delight through and through. The characters are well drawn, the dialogue is witty, and the touches of magic arrive in perfect measure.

The Island (Day 75)

My Opinion: 6.6 || A deeply felt movie that’s distinctive but not distinctly successful. As a depiction of earnest religious devotion it rings true, but there’s little investigation of that devotion or insight into… Continue reading

The Edge of Heaven (Day 74)

My Opinion: 7.7 || Complex, affecting movie about connections made and connections missed. After a strong beginning, the film becomes a bit strained in the middle (working too hard to set up the connections… Continue reading

La Femme Nikita (Day 73)

My Opinion: 6.5 || Stylish action film that’s spawned myriad spin-offs and imitations. The last act is badly muddled, but the foundation is excellent, the thriller elements are well filmed, and it’s a mostly… Continue reading

The Ear (Day 72)

My Opinion: 6.0 || A potentially powerful exploration of paranoia and state control that’s obscured by the abrasive domestic drama laid on top of it. We never develop sympathy for these unlikeable characters, and… Continue reading

  • About Me


    I'm an author and consultant in Portland, Oregon. My novel 'Beheld' will be published this June.

  • The Mission

    To watch and write about one new foreign film a day for 100 days. It's a cinematic world tour -- with an emphasis on diversity of language, era, and style.

    In addition to the daily commentaries, I'll post weekly and monthly wrap-ups. And explore cool ways of graphing the films and my responses to them.