Featured Essays

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The Lobster (2015) | A24
If this is a list, let it be a syllabus, a series of entry points joined by common questions: What does it look and sound like to understand your life, previously envisioned as exclusively “ahead,” as incrementally, but increasingly, behind? What can a moment of emotional accuracy accomplish? What imperative pleasures does meticulousness afford? Read More

From the archives


A Frog, Escaped | art by Brianna Ashby
The Muppet Movie, like all truly great art, focuses myriad points of anguished thought and feeling into a single beam of light—in this case, literally—to demonstrate, with a simplicity that belies its depth, its own magnificence. Read More
Ghost in the Shell 2: Innocence features mismatched animation styles, non sequitur montages, a sphinxlike plot presentation, and bulky meditations on the nature of reality. But such committed excessiveness, for this viewer, makes Innocence my favorite kind of film: powerful in its earnestness, and captivating in its thoughtful defiance. Read More
Jennifer Lopez in Hustlers (2019) | art by Brianna Ashby
Critics and fans have accurately described Hustlers as a bedazzled Recession-era period piece. But the movie is equally specific to our times, the first in Hollywood history to produce movie after movie about ordinary(ish) women doing crimes.  Read More
It would be natural to assume it’s impossible to recreate Harold Pinter’s effects on-screen. What cinematic setting could ever replicate the feeling of an ordinary space that simultaneously exists in a howling metaphysical void? Read More