Darrell Hartman

Morality Play

Darrell Hartman on Pier Paolo Pasolini’s Trilogy of Life

November 2012

PIER PAOLO PASOLINI’S so-called Trilogy of Life, which Criterion is reissuing today on Blu-Ray and DVD, consists of The Decameron (1971), The Canterbury Tales (1972), and Arabian Nights (1974). The explicit sexuality of these adaptations was… READ ON


Language Games

Darrell Hartman on the films of Jean-Pierre Gorin

January 2012

PEOPLE TALK ABOUT HOW this or that director has a good eye. In the case of the experimental filmmaker Jean-Pierre Gorin, it’s just as much about the ear. Gorin, a French-born émigré based in California, has that ear cocked toward outsiders;… READ ON


Gardner Variety

Darrell Hartman on Robert Gardner

November 2011

ROBERT GARDNER, who is eighty-seven and the subject of a Film Forum retrospective that begins this week, is perhaps best described as an anthropologist who has made film his medium. Specializing in people and places that are at a remove from… READ ON


Gone Roeg

Darrell Hartman on Nicolas Roeg

June 2011

PAST IS PRESENT in the cinema of Nicolas Roeg. To simply call those extratemporal sequences that punctuate his work “flashbacks” is to downplay the role that images of what came before play in his films. Such “digressive” framing devices are,… READ ON


Street Smart

Darrell Hartman on On the Bowery

September 2010

LIONEL ROGOSIN’S On the Bowery (1957) inhabits two netherworlds: Manhattan’s storied skid row and the nascent independent American cinema. Filmed mostly in the shadows of the old Third Avenue elevated train, Rogosin’s frank depiction of … READ ON


Safety in Numbers

Darrell Hartman on 45365

June 2010

IS IT IRONIC that 45365 (2009), a more or less home-baked film that celebrates a particularly American ideal of small-town life, never really makes it back to the cradle from which it sprang? Lovingly created by a pair of natives of Sidney,… READ ON


The Quick and the Dead

Darrell Hartman on Nikolaus Geyrhalter

January 2010

IN PRIPYAT (1999), Nikolaus Geyrhalter’s documentary about postmeltdown Chernobyl, a policeman refers to his beat as a “dead zone.” A handful of elderly residents remain, but most, like a cheerful plant manager and the technician who sneaks… READ ON


Young Love

Darrell Hartman on Truffaut’s Small Change

November 2009

“I NEVER TIRE of filming with children,” François Truffaut once said. “All that a child does on-screen, he seems to do for the first time.” More than any of the director’s other works, Small Change (1976) is devoted to cataloguing these … READ ON


The Old Country

Darrell Hartman on Ulrich Seidl

July 2009

FEW DIRECTORS MAKE THE FRAME seem more like a prison cell than Ulrich Seidl. Confined to their airtight chambers, his characters lead empty, repetitive lives consisting of cruel, pointless relationships. His camera rarely shows signs of life.… READ ON


Ordinary People

Darrell Hartman on The Moon and the Sledgehammer

June 2009

An obscure gem—or prize scrap—from the golden age of cinema verité, Philip Trevelyan’s 1971 documentary The Moon and the Sledgehammer goes down a rabbit hole and comes up face-to-face with one of the most bizarre and captivating families ever… READ ON