Streaming: Elisabeth Moss in Her Smell not to be sniffed at

Elisabeth Moss thrills as a strung-out rock star in Alex Ross Perrys tremendous, terribly titled new film A bad title can be a debilitating handicap to even the best of films: if it makes you wince even to say the thing, its that much harder to get invested in watching it. This is a truth that has been learned the hard way by the new film from American independent writer-director Alex Ross Perry: a daring, grungily immersive and quite brilliantly acted character study that has been saddled, for reasons best known to Perry himself, with the buzz-killing moniker Her Smell. Try telling people, as I have for several months now, that they should be looking out for a terrific film …

Blackbird review Sarandon and Winslet’s lifeless death drama

A terminally ill matriarch gathers her family together before she ends her life in a starry, but flat, drama that lacks insight and compelling conflict More than any other major festival, Toronto is quite often blinded by stars. A smattering of of recognisable faces in a film can distract programmers from a small thing like quality and so the lineup reliably features at least four or five flashy but time-wasting disappointments, forgettable films that will live and die at the festival, pre-premiere hype evaporating by the time the credits roll. One of this years most glaring examples is Blackbird, a film that might tempt festivalgoers with its high-wattage cast but will struggle to exist anywhere else. The promise of Susan …

Gemma Chan: Nothing will top the night I pole-danced with Celine Dion on a bus

Starring in Crazy Rich Asians and Captain Marvel turned Gemma Chan into a household name. But it was not always so easy. She talks about giving up law, dealing with shyness and becoming Hollywood royalty Gemma Chan is nervous, as if shes waiting for the dentist to perform a particularly painful extraction. We meet in a caf filled with babies and tired-looking mothers, in a fancy, rich-people part of north London. The setting is appropriate, given what were here to talk about: I Am Hannah, the new improvised Channel 4 drama she co-created with director Dominic Savage. It tells the story of a woman in her mid-30s who dates, scattershot, via apps, while feeling the weight of the biological and …

New York’s historic Paris Theatre under threat after more than 70 years in business

Future of citys last single screen cinema, opened by Marlene Dietrich and frequented by David Bowie, hangs in the balance The Paris Theatre has become one of New Yorks cultural landmarks since it was officially opened by the actor Marlene Dietrich as a cinema for showing French films in 1948. Down the road from Central Park and across the street from the Plaza hotel, it attracted queues around the block as the go-to place to watch arthouse and foreign language films and was known for showing the same movie for months on end. In the early 00s it gained cult status with Sex and the City fans after Carrie Bradshaw declared it one of the best features of Manhattan life …

The Projectionist review Abel Ferrara’s wistful, indulgent ode to cinema

In a loving yet overlong documentary, the director looks back on 1970s New York and how movie-watching has changed Of Martin Scorseses classic Taxi Driver, the film critic Ty Burr once wrote, Before Times Square was a Disneyfied tourist heaven, children, it was hell. The New York of the 1970s had the dangerous luster of a well-polished razor blade, with hedonism and crime simultaneously hitting a hysterical peak. Forty-second Street was full of coke, pimps and working girls; the downtown scene was all art freaks and experimentalists creating raw expressions of urban fervor with whatever they could get their hands on. The neon lights of porn theaters would advertise smut with the same caliber of pizzazz as the major cineplexes. …