The Set-Up (Robert Wise, 1949)

“You’ll always be one punch away.” Plot Summary: A seemingly washed-up fighter (Robert Ryan) enters the ring for his last bout unaware that his manager has fixed the fight with gangsters. Review: Combining the potency of the boxing drama with the shadowy atmosphere and fateful sensibility of film noir, The Set-Up is one of the┬ábest […]

Repulsion (Roman Polanski, 1965)

“There’s only one thing they want.” Plot Summary: A sexually repressed woman (Catherine Deneuve) with a pathological disgust for men slowly descends into homicidal madness. Review: One of the creepiest visions of madness ever put on film, Repulsion slowly draws us into the mentally crumbling world of its beautiful but deeply disturbed protagonist, Carol. At […]

Oliver Twist (David Lean, 1948)

“Please, sir, I want some more” Plot Summary: Based on Charles Dickens’s second novel, Oliver Twist tells the story of an orphaned boy who manages to escape from a workhouse only to fall in with a young pickpocket known as The Artful Dodger and a den of thieves led by the wretched Fagin. Review: Oliver […]

The Passion of Joan of Arc (Carl Theodor Dreyer, 1928)

“All I can say is that sometimes you have to back your convictions even when it would be easier to disown them.” Plot Summary: Joan of Arc is tried and convicted for heresy by hostile inquisitors. Review: Working from actual historical records, Dreyer’s aim was to make the viewer feel as if he were an […]