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Sight & Sound November 2014


Mike Leigh gets Romantic, Darwinian sci-fi and the birth of the Method. Plus Nightcrawler, ’71, Gone Girl, Steven Soderbergh’s TV drama The Knick, the Venice and Toronto film festivals, agnès b, Zabriskie Point, Gregory J. Markopoulos and much more.

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Mike Leigh’s Mr. Turner painstakingly recreates the world of the Romantic landscape painter to illuminate the artist’s creative process. The director explains the challenge of portraying the details of a life in broad brushstrokes and why Timothy Spall was exactly ‘the right man for the job’. By Isabel Stevens.

+ Portraits of the artists

Mr. Turner takes its place within a wide canvas of films drawing on the lives and work of artists and sculptors that stretches back to the earliest days of cinema. By Michael Brooke.

Sci-Fi: Days of Fear and Wonder special: Darwin’s nightmares

The insidious altered states and transformations that abound in sci-fi cinema owe their genesis to the work of the great evolutionary biologist, and each new milestone in Darwinian theory, from The Selfish Gene to the Human Genome Project, provides fresh material for filmmakers to adapt to. By Roger Luckhurst.

Sci-Fi: Days of Fear and Wonder special: The future is here

While much big-screen sci-fi relies on splashy effects, plenty of less ostentatious films have made a virtue of their low budgets, either by cleverly employing the viewer’s imagination to fill in the gaps at key moments, or by presenting a dystopian vision of the present to stand in for the future. By Jonathan Rosenbaum.

Deep focus: Birth of the method – the revolution in American acting

Born from the experimental work of Constantin Stanislavski at the Moscow Art Theatre in the early 20th century and incubated in the 1930s at New York’s pioneering Group Theatre,Method acting exploded on to the stage and screen in the US at the end of the 40s and early 50s in the work of a new generation of actors such as Montgomery Clift, James Dean, Marlon Brando and Julie Harris.

Foster Hirsch explores the history of the new style, outlining the numerous ‘methods’ behind the process, while James Bell introduces the 12 films showing in our accompanying season.

+ Faith in the system

Although he only made two films, Jack Garfein, a central figure at the Actors Studio, is finally starting to enjoy the acclaim he deserves. By Clyde Jeavons.



Films of the month

Gone Girl


plus reviews of

As Above/So Below
The Babadook
Before I Go to Sleep
The Boxtrolls
The Calling
Cathedrals of Culture
A Dangerous Game
Dolphin Tale 2
Draft Day
Effie Gray
The Equalizer
Finding Fanny
The Giver
Gone Too Far!
Human Capital
If I Stay
Jack to a King: 
The Swansea Story
Jimi: All Is by My Side
The Judge
The Kidnapping of Michel Houellebecq
The Knife That Killed Me
Life After Beth
Love, Rosie
Manuscripts Don’t Burn
The Maze Runner
Mr. Turner
My Name Is Hmmm…
The Overnighters
The Riot Club
Sin City 2: A Dame to Kill For
Soul Boys of the Western World
Still the Enemy Within
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles
Time Is Illmatic
Tony Benn: Will and Testament
United We Fall
The Way He Looks
White Settlers

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