Articles by Alan Gerstle

The Critical Movie Critics

Alan Gerstle is a fiction writer and essayist who also teaches film and creative writing. He lives on the East Coast of the United States.


Movie Review: Aniara (2018)

In his play, “The Glass Menagerie,” Tennessee Williams alludes to one of the characters as the “Gentleman Caller.” He is the character in the play that is supposed to be realistically rendered to complement the rest of the cast who comprise a group of dreamers. Williams describes him as “a symbol . . . the…

Movie Review: Leto (2018)

“Fuck your TV. I’ve got my T-Rex.” “It’s OK in the swamp, especially if you’re the number one toad.” Leto, written and directed by Kirill Serebrennikov (“The Student”), has received much buzz because of the director’s house arrest — apparently because he is no friend of Vladimir Putin. It has also been criticized for not…

Movie Review: Sobibor (2018)

A reasonable question many people may raise regarding Sobibor, a feature film about the Holocaust in general, and about a particular concentration camp, in particular, is what can it add to our understanding of the nature of the “final solution” by those that perpetrated it, and those that fell victim to it? It’s true that…

Movie Review: The Light of Hope (2017)

The Light of Hope (La llum d’Elna), a Spanish-language film directed by Silvia Quer from a script by Margarita Melgar, begins in a celebratory mood, as Pat, a boy of nine or ten, runs through the grounds of an old estate in the French countryside, threading his way through a beehive of activity. What is…

Movie Review: Budapest Noir (2017)

News Vendor: “I’m leaving.” Gordon: “Why?” News Vendor: “I found out I’m Jewish.” Gordon: “But you fought in the war.” News Vendor: “Tell it to the person that threw a rock at my window.” Gordon: “This is Budapest.” Budapest Noir, directed by Éva Gárdos (“American Rhapsody”) transports us to the Budapest of 1936. Zsigmond Gordon…

Movie Review: The Last Suit (2017)

The Last Suit (El Último Traje), the second feature film by writer/director Pablo Solarz (“Intimate Stories”) is an Argentine/Spain production that follows the journey of Abraham Bursztein (Miguel Ángel Solá, “The Impatient Alchemist”) an 88-year-old holocaust survivor who found refuge in Argentina, where he created a life for himself, working as a tailor and raising…

Movie Review: Liyana (2017)

“The universe is made of stories, not of atoms.” — Muriel Rukeyser (Poet and physicist) Liyana, directed by the Swaziland-born husband and wife team of Aaron and Amanda Kopp, is a genre bending documentary that follows a small group of Swazi children — residents of Likhaya Lemphilo Lensha, a Swaziland orphanage — as they participate…

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