Articles by Matthew Roe

The Critical Movie Critics

A Baltimore-based film critic and award-winning filmmaker, founder of Heaven’s Fire Films. He has written film critique and theory for FilmSnobbery, CommunitySoul, The Baltimore Examiner, AXS and Men’s Confidence Magazine. Currently writes the dedicated horror film column “Psycho Pompous” for Screen Anarchy, and movie reviews for IONCINEMA.


Movie Review: Naila and the Uprising (2017)

The Israeli occupation of Palestine is one of the most hotly debated and controversial ongoing crises in Western Asia for the past several decades, resulting in numerous affronts to human rights that have stained the last few generations of those who call the region home. While the differences of opinion over what is to be…

Movie Review: The Departure (2017)

The opening montage of dance clubs and riding motorcycles throughout the Japanese countryside flow along with an eerily tranquil score, letting audiences know from the onset that Ittetsu Nemoto is no singularly-defined monk. Filmmaker Lana Wilson and cinematographer Emily Topper (“After Tiller”) have teamed up with editor David Teague (“Life, Animated”) to explore one man’s…

Movie Review: mother! (2017)

Darren Aronofsky has become a stalwart of complex themes bursting at subconscious seams with metaphor and symbolism throughout his impressive career. His darkly brutal handling of vivid despondency and ardent intentions has made his voice one of the most uniquely inspiring and eclectic in contemporary film. mother! has seemingly hit a crescendo of its director’s…

Movie Review: Dayveon (2017)

Though there have been many coming-of-age dramas set against a galaxy of different backdrops, there usually is a moralistic or sociological approach to the experience in which a catharsis can be universally reached. Composer/writer/director Amman Abbasi makes his feature film debut with the latest addition to the genre with a surprising blend of naturalistic techniques…

Movie Review: School Life (2016)

Headfort in Ireland is a boarding school with an illustrious history, long-held traditions and a burning desire to inspire the students to grow as people. With a curriculum comprised of reading, writing, arithmetic and Rock n’ Roll, John and Amanda Leyden have imparted knowledge and experiences onto multiple generations as the school’s most veteran professors….

Movie Review: The Vault (2017)

Though an estranged family tackling a bank heist in order to save a sibling is a recipe for interesting discourses by way of “Dog Day Afternoon,” The Vault, unfortunately is not that kind of film. Dan Bush cut his teeth co-directing, co-writing and co-editing the extraordinarily effective thriller/horror “The Signal,” followed by the overlooked yet…

Movie Review: Death Note (2017)

One of the most attractive and thrilling aspects of Tsugumi Ohba’s manga and Tetsuro Araki’s anime adaptation of Death Note, is that the persistent and ever-twisting mind games played against a stylish and neo-noir backdrop always seem to build on the one preceding it until it reaches unfathomable heights. Though there have been live-action adaptations…

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