By Nick Barrickman, 24 July 2017
Shawn “Jay-Z” Carter’s 4:44, released June 30 on his Roc Nation label and available through Carter’s streaming service Tidal, is the rapper and entrepreneur’s thirteenth studio album.
Including a conversation with film historian Tony Williams
By David Walsh, 21 July 2017
The American director of numerous horror and other films, including Night of the Living Dead, died July 16 in Toronto.
By Bryan Dyne, 20 July 2017
The 10-episode season depicts the life of one of the most renowned scientists in world history without paying much attention to the science he developed.
By Joanne Laurier, 17 July 2017
Lady Macbeth is an adaptation of the well-known novella by Russian writer Nikolai Leskov, transposed to northeast England. Mali Blues offers a glimpse of that country’s remarkable musical scene.
More than 100 works by the American artist
By Lee Parsons, 15 July 2017
The show, presenting O’Keeffe’s varied styles and subjects in drawings, paintings, photography and sculpture, spans her lengthy art career and demonstrates her versatility.
Netflix series on Elizabeth II
By David Walsh, 13 July 2017
The Crown is a biographical drama series, created and written by Peter Morgan (The Queen, The Damned United), about the life and reign of Queen Elizabeth II. The first season covers the years 1947 to 1955.
By Joanne Laurier, 12 July 2017
Directed by Miguel Arteta (Cedar Rapids) and featuring Salma Hayek and John Lithgow, the new film promotes a New Age-type opposition to a Trump-like figure.
The Carter Family, Mississippi John Hurt, Lydia Mendoza, Joseph Kekuku and more …
By Matthew Brennan, 11 July 2017
All three episodes—The Big Bang, Blood and Soil and Out Of The Many The One—contain important recollections and at times powerful archival footage.
By Joanne Laurier, 7 July 2017
Along the way, the film demonstrates once again how contemporary gender and racial politics tyrannizes over much of current cultural life.
By Ed Hightower, 1 July 2017
The prequel to AMC’s hit Breaking Bad has an identity crisis, and in Season Three resolves this by largely becoming another cop drama.
The “forces in power” are sensitive “to art and ideas”
By David Walsh, 29 June 2017
Hurwitz is one of the most honored documentary cinematographers in the US. His many credits include work on Harlan County, USA (1976), Wild Man Blues (1997), Dancemaker (1998), The Turandot Project (2000) and The Queen of Versailles (2012).
By David Walsh, 27 June 2017
Between 1957 and 1965 or so, American photographer Eugene Smith took some 40,000 photos and recorded nearly 4,000 hours of audio tape, many dedicated to jazz and jazz musicians, in a New York City loft.
“All these people worked all night, every night, crazily, obsessively”
By David Walsh, 27 June 2017
Sara Fishko is an executive producer and host at WNYC, a public radio station in New York. Her film sheds fascinating light on artistic life in the 1950s and 1960s.
Netflix drama strikes a nerve …
By David Walsh, 21 June 2017
Whitney Kassel, late of the Defense Department, Special Operations in Afghanistan and Pakistan, a former member of McChrystal’s “team,” has written a denunciation of War Machine in Foreign Policy magazine.
By Hiram Lee, 20 June 2017
The newest season of the Netflix drama House of Cards sees the corrupt administration of President Frank Underwood struggling to retain power while battling rival factions within the state.
By David Walsh, 17 June 2017
Roger Michell’s film, based on the 1951 novel by Daphne du Maurier set in the 19th century, follows a callow young man who falls for his sophisticated, perhaps calculating older “cousin.”
Theater professionals address the Flint water disaster
By Joanne Laurier, 15 June 2017
A version of Ibsen’s An Enemy of the People (1882) was performed last week in the devastated city of Flint, Michigan, as a commentary on the city’s water crisis.
By Joanne Laurier, 15 June 2017
Several members of the cast of a new adaptation of Henrik Ibsen’s An Enemy of the People (1882), performed last week in Flint, Michigan, spoke to the WSWS.
By Sam Price and Tom Peters, 14 June 2017
Gill objected to the WSWS review of her book and claimed that she was an “anti-war person.”
By Fred Mazelis, 14 June 2017
Allusions to Donald Trump in the current production of Shakespeare’s play have been followed by a right-wing campaign of intimidation.
By David Walsh, 13 June 2017
The story involves an Amazonian princess/demigoddess who makes her way, in the company of an American Allied spy, from her island paradise to Europe toward the end of the First World War.
By Alan Gilman, 12 June 2017
Samantha Geimer, the victim of Roman Polanski’s 1977 sex offense, urged a Los Angles court Friday to end her and Polanski’s 40 years of torment by dismissing the director’s case.
Three intriguing new films that should not disappear unnoticed: Sami Blood, Past Life and Radio Dreams
By David Walsh, 10 June 2017
Most of the films in movie theaters in the US at the moment are poor, or worse. As a result, the public is increasingly turning away. But there are exceptions.
Roger Waters’ Is This the Life We Really Want?: An angry, depressed protest against war and nationalism
By Kevin Reed, 9 June 2017
In 12 tracks and 55 minutes, Waters paints a picture of a desperate world and he issues an angry protest—if also a disheartened outburst—against the things that make it so.
By Norisa Diaz, 5 June 2017
The New York-based band has been banished from the music industry following social media allegations of sexual assault, undermining the long-standing legal principle that the accused is presumed “innocent until proven guilty.”
By Wasantha Rupasinghe, 3 June 2017
Prasanna Vithanage’s documentary deals with the sexual assault of two village women by a magistrate and the subsequent cover-up.
By James Brewer, 3 June 2017
The Public Broadcasting Service presented an engaging and informative documentary on the science behind the Flint water crisis.
By David Walsh, 1 June 2017
The HBO film is an account of the downfall of Wall Street swindler Bernard Madoff, whose multi-billion-dollar stock and securities fraud unraveled in December 2008.
By Joanne Laurier, 30 May 2017
The film admirably revives a venerable tradition of anti-military and anti-war drama and comedy in the US.
Conversations with Joseph Goebbels’s secretary
By Bernd Reinhardt and Verena Nees, 27 May 2017
The Austrian-made documentary centres on Brunhilde Pomsel (1911-2017), who worked as a secretary in the office of Nazi propaganda minister Joseph Goebbels from 1942 to 1945.
By Clare Hurley, 25 May 2017
The stated goal of the Biennial in New York City is to capture the zeitgeist—”spirit of the times”—through a selection of what is considered representative contemporary artwork.
By Clare Hurley, 25 May 2017
Celeste Dupuy-Spencer is one of the 63 artists included in the Whitney Biennial 2017. She recently gave an interview to the WSWS.
By Joanne Laurier, 24 May 2017
The first season of the new Netflix 10-part series, Dear White People, an expansion of Justin Simien’s 2014 movie, concerns a group of black students at a fictional, predominantly white, Ivy League college.
The cases of Aaron Gach, Mem Fox, United Vibrations, Soviet Soviet and others
By Marko Leone and David Walsh, 23 May 2017
The various agencies responsible for immigration issues and border control have clearly been given the green light by the Trump administration to intimidate and generally terrorize anyone they can get their hands on.
By Adam Soroka, 22 May 2017
Cornell (born July 20, 1964 in Seattle, Washington) will be best remembered as the lead vocalist of the Seattle metal band Soundgarden. His vocals combined an R&B sensibility with a dynamic, multi-octave range.
By Marko Leone and Kevin Martinez, 20 May 2017
Mayor Kevin Faulconer has called for a 15 percent cut in the city’s budget for theaters, museums, playhouses and other cultural sites.
By Carlos Delgado, 20 May 2017
The series stars Kiefer Sutherland as Tom Kirkman, a low-level cabinet member who ascends to the presidency after a devastating attack on the US government.
By David Walsh, 19 May 2017
Poitras’ film about Julian Assange and WikiLeaks, the four lawyers contend, undermines the credibility of the organization at a critical moment and exposes the documentary’s subjects “to considerable legal jeopardy.”
The Return of History, Conflict, Migration and Geopolitics in the 21st Century
By Roger Jordan, 18 May 2017
Based on human rights propaganda and a dishonest presentation of the virtues of international law, author Jennifer Welsh argues that the West has to act more aggressively to defend democratic values against terrorism and a resurgent Russia.
By Matthew Brennan, 18 May 2017
The album is June’s first proper release since the 2013 album Pushing Against a Stone, which made her a nationally known artist in the US.
Production at Washington, DC’s Shakespeare Theatre Company
By Nick Barrickman, 16 May 2017
The production is visually compelling and makes an attempt to place the Shakespeare classic within the context of modern political and social developments.
By Jean Shaoul, 15 May 2017
The Tate’s workforce earns on average £24,000, significantly less than the national median of £27,600, which means poverty wages in one of the most expensive cities in the world.
By Ed Hightower, 15 May 2017
The few elements that might have been the show’s saving grace vanish in this final season as Girls dives hard into the morass of identity politics and “personal responsibility.”
Citizens Band, Something Wild, The Silence of the Lambs, Philadelphia …
By David Walsh, 13 May 2017
American filmmaker Jonathan Demme died April 26 in New York City from complications stemming from esophageal cancer and heart disease. He was 73.
By David Walsh and Joanne Laurier, 11 May 2017
The film broaches a dozen subjects and avoids treating any of them in depth, and often fails to take a clear position of any kind.
By Genevieve Leigh, 10 May 2017
The new Netflix series treats the background to the decision by Hannah Baker, a high school student in a more or less average American suburb, to kill herself…and its consequences.
San Francisco International Film Festival—Part 4
By David Walsh and Joanne Laurier, 6 May 2017
A highlight of the recent San Francisco film festival was the screening of Soviet filmmaker Dziga Vertov’s masterpiece, The Man with a Movie Camera (1929), at the historic Castro Theatre.
By Joanne Laurier, 5 May 2017
Sonia Kennebeck’s disturbing documentary, National Bird, can be viewed until May 16 on PBS’s “Independent Lens” web site.
San Francisco International Film Festival—Part 3
By Joanne Laurier, 4 May 2017
Honest films about the character and impact of the brutal neo-colonial wars in Iraq, Afghanistan and elsewhere are extremely hard to come by.
By Vladimir Volkov, 3 May 2017
Yevgeny Yevtushenko, the best-known Soviet poet from the 1960s to the 1980s, died at 85 from cancer on April 1, 2017, in Tulsa, Oklahoma.
New York’s Metropolitan Museum of Art considers mandatory admission charge for out-of-state visitors
By Fred Mazelis, 1 May 2017
In a city that is home to 79 billionaires, the resources exist many times over for free museum admission for all.
By Gary Alvernia, 28 April 2017
The radicalization of Mexican artists led to the creation of powerful and engaging works that expressed the faith of the artistic community in the revolution of the masses.
Lecture at San Diego State University
By David Walsh, 27 April 2017
This is an edited version of a talk given at San Diego State University on April 18 by WSWS arts editor David Walsh. Audio of the talk is included.
By David Walsh, 26 April 2017
The 2017 San Francisco International Film Festival screened some 180 films from 50 countries or so. This is the first of several articles.
By Fred Mazelis, 18 April 2017
One of the early films of major Taiwanese director Edward Yang was recently screened in the US for the first time.
By Emanuele Saccarelli, 12 April 2017
Pablo Larraín’s Neruda is a highly unconventional and dissatisfying biopic of the Chilean poet.
Public meeting April 18 in San Diego, California
11 April 2017
WSWS Arts Editor David Walsh will speak at San Diego State University on the retrograde trends that evaluate art based on concepts like “white privilege” and “cultural appropriation.”
San Diego Latino Film Festival—Part 2
By Kevin Martinez and Toby Reese, 6 April 2017
Films from Ecuador, Mexico, Colombia and the Dominican Republic were shown at the festival, including a tense political drama, a dialogue-free drama and two documentaries.
By Joanne Laurier, 5 April 2017
The Zookeeper’s Wife recounts the true story of the rescue of Jews from the Warsaw Ghetto during the Nazi invasion of Poland that began in 1939.
San Diego Latino Film Festival—Part 1
By Kevin Martinez and Toby Reese, 3 April 2017
The festival screened films from Mexico, Cuba, Spain, Venezuela, Colombia, Canada, Argentina, Chile, Ecuador, Puerto Rico, Peru, Honduras, Brazil, the US and other countries.
By Kevin Martinez and Toby Reese, 3 April 2017
The WSWS conducted an interview with Mexican film director Jose Ramon Pedroza.
Once again on Dana Schutz’s painting of Emmett Till: The New York Times intervenes to preserve identity politics
By David Walsh, 31 March 2017
The media establishment clearly senses that in the case of the Schutz painting in the Whitney Biennial, the identity politics zealots may have overstepped the bounds.
Lyrical and left-wing film
By Joanne Laurier, 29 March 2017
A viewing of Nicholas Ray’s iconic 1948 film They Live by Night is a refreshing antidote to the current trivia, social indifference and identity politics.
By Hiram Lee, 28 March 2017
With Get Out, Jordan Peele has said he wanted to make a film to “combat the lie that America had become post-racial.” The monster at the heart of this horror film is racism itself.
By David Walsh, 24 March 2017
The current campaign being waged against Open Casket, white artist Dana Schutz’s painting of murdered black youth Emmett Till, on racialist grounds is thoroughly reactionary.
Thomas Jefferson and Ben Franklin museums in Philadelphia closed by Trump administration hiring freeze
By Douglas Lyons, 23 March 2017
The Trump administration’s hiring freeze and threatened budget cuts prompted the National Park Service to close the historic attractions.
By Hiram Lee, 23 March 2017
It would be difficult to overstate Berry’s influence on American popular music in the second half of the 20th century. Perhaps more than any other artist in the genre, he defined the sound of rock ’n’ roll.
By Clara Weiss, 21 March 2017
American novelist John Steinbeck, together with famed Hungarian-born war photographer Robert Capa, visited the Soviet Union in 1947 on the very eve of the Cold War.
By Jason Melanovski, 18 March 2017
Russophobia and historical misrepresentation abound in George Mendeluk’s pseudo-historical drama.
By Joanne Laurier and David Walsh, 17 March 2017
British filmmaker Margy Kinmonth is out of her depth in her documentary about Russian avant-garde art.
By Fred Mazelis, 11 March 2017
A new documentary shows the impact of decades of Israeli occupation of the West Bank on the Zionist state.
67th Berlin International Film Festival—Part 3
By Bernd Reinhardt, 9 March 2017
The dramatic social and political developments of the past several years were evidently not high on the German filmmakers’ agenda.
By Clara Weiss, 6 March 2017
In a profoundly moving, intimate and disturbing way, Joshua Oppenheimer’s film deals with the long-lasting and devastating impact of the mass murder of up to one million Communists and suspected Communists.
67th Berlin International Film Festival--Part 2
By Bernd Reinhardt, 4 March 2017
The debut film of Étienne Comar focuses on the year 1943, when the Nazis tried unsuccessfully to convince Django Reinhardt to undertake a tour of fascist Germany.
A contribution on art and identity politics
By Steven Brust, 3 March 2017
The comment by fantasy and science fiction writer Steven Brust is a response to the effort to restrict art and literature according to the dictates of racial and gender politics.
By David Walsh, 28 February 2017
The 89th Academy Awards ceremony, held Sunday at the Dolby Theatre in Hollywood, was an even more complex and peculiar affair than usual.
By Hiram Lee, 27 February 2017
Indie rock veterans The Flaming Lips have returned with a new album of mostly detached psychedelia.
Russian revolutionary art exhibition in London excises Trotsky—and, more generally, historical truth
Revolution: Russian Art 1917–1932
By Paul Mitchell, 25 February 2017
Curator Natalia Murray’s aim in the Royal Academy exhibition is to pour scorn on and discredit the 1917 October Revolution and to combat the contemporary impact of the works it inspired.
By Joanne Laurier, 23 February 2017
Set in ancient China, Zhang Yimou’s new work is a visually arresting, large-scale action film undermined by its general cartoonishness.
By Richard Phillips and Linda Tenenbaum, 22 February 2017
Today, the ruling elites regard genuinely critical and creative voices with suspicion or outright hostility.
By Fred Mazelis, 20 February 2017
A late 19th century composer who has some detractors gets his big moment at Carnegie Hall.
By Kevin Martinez, 17 February 2017
Renowned for playing outsiders and “commoners,” British actor John Hurt died January 25, three days after his 77th birthday.
By Joanne Laurier, 16 February 2017
Spanish filmmaker Pedro Almodóvar’s latest film, Julieta, is a family melodrama that seeks to explore themes of guilt, alienation and absence, but with very limited results.
Columnist Myles E. Johnson on Beyoncé at the Grammys
By David Walsh, 16 February 2017
The February 14 op-ed piece in the Times by Myles E. Johnson (“What Beyoncé Won Was Bigger Than a Grammy”) is an especially repugnant example of racialism.
By Nick Barrickman, 15 February 2017
Numerous Grammy Award-winning music artists took to the stage on Sunday’s awards ceremony to criticize the new US administration.
By Nick Barrickman, 15 February 2017
Axelrod crafted and inspired some of the more haunting, cinematic and versatile popular American music during the second half of the 20th century.
By Clare Hurley, 14 February 2017
The film takes as its point of departure Baldwin’s proposal to his editor in 1979 to write a piece about civil rights leaders Medgar Evers, Malcolm X and Martin Luther King, Jr.
By Tom Carter, 13 February 2017
“Most of the film takes place inside an apartment,” Farhadi told one interviewer, “but once the film has ended, you feel like you’ve seen the whole city.”
Budapest Festival Orchestra in New York
By Fred Mazelis, 11 February 2017
Symphony orchestras in major US cities (and many smaller cities as well) have large and growing numbers of immigrants in their ranks, and the music they perform is international in scope and history.
By Joanne Laurier, 10 February 2017
In the course of a lengthy filmmaking career, Brazilian-born Alberto Cavalcanti created several of the most poetically realistic and socially poignant films of the twentieth century.
By Chris Marsden and Paul Mitchell, 8 February 2017
Jones paints a lying picture of gratuitous violence by the Bolsheviks, but fails to mention the intervention of the imperialist powers, or to detail the White terror they helped sustain.
By Sandy English and David Walsh, 7 February 2017
Prominent left-wing art critic John Berger died on January 2 and left a mixed legacy of writing on art and society.
“None of these games would be possible without our labor”
By Glenn Mulwray, 7 February 2017
The Screen Actors Guild called for a rally in support of video game performers striking against 11 major entertainment corporations.
By Carlos Delgado, 4 February 2017
The science fiction television series purports to show its viewers the dark side of modern technology.
By George Morley, 3 February 2017
The two-hour feature, about a young Indian-Australian man finding his birth mother, has been nominated for six Academy Awards, including Best Picture.
By Clare Hurley, 2 February 2017
This retrospective of 35 years of Marshall’s work, jointly organized by several museums, is welcome and somewhat overdue.
By Joanne Laurier, 1 February 2017
Set in the 1980s, Gold is a fictionalized account of a notorious mining fraud. 20th Century Women is a trite “coming of age” piece located in 1979 California.
Exhibition at the Museum of Modern Art in New York City
By Josh Varlin, 30 January 2017
The current exhibition in New York is an opportunity to see some of the most influential works from the early Soviet Union.
By David Walsh, 28 January 2017
Dutch-born director Verhoeven’s new film was made in France, and features Isabelle Huppert, who received an Academy Award nomination for her performance.
By Joanne Laurier, 26 January 2017
John Lee Hancock’s The Founder is a biographical drama about Ray Kroc, known as the man who established the McDonald’s global fast food chain.