cinephiles

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What is a lobby boy? A lobby boy is completely invisible, yet always in sight. A lobby boy remembers what people hate. A lobby boy anticipates the client’s needs before the needs are needed. A lobby boy is, above all, discreet to a fault. Our guests know that their deepest secrets, some of which are frankly rather unseemly, will go with us to our graves.

The Grand Budapest Hotel (2014)

Dir. Wes Anderson

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“Throughout all of these turns, Ali exhibits so much talent, resourcefulness and dashing, mega-watt charisma that it’s something of an embarrassment that no one in Hollywood has made him a matinee idol yet. He has triumphed as a supporting actor this year not by resigning himself to second-fiddle status or self-servingly stealing the show, but by fostering deep-rooted connections with the actors in his company and making every single moment pulse with resonance, no matter the size or stakes. That is what real support looks like. That is the Mahershala Ali way.”

2016 belonged to Mahershala Ali. Matthew Eng explains why.

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“Through contemporary eyes, the static shots and urban milieus of Black Girl seem to solidify Sembène’s filmmaking as an aesthetic neighbor to the emotionally-walloping neorealism of the Italian De Sica. Black Girl may not evoke the immediate adoration of something as universally beloved as De Sica’s Bicycle Thieves, although the latter film’s deft interweaving of personal-is-political social commentary with the rueful, everyday messiness of the lives of the marginalized working class began a storytelling tradition that is gloriously carried on by Sembène. Black Girl has all the skillful stylistic simplicity of your typical piece of neorealism but also packs a sharper bite and it’s electrifying to watch Sembène craft a twisty drama with the piano-chord tautness of a thriller that is nonetheless coated in such a rare and wryly intimate form of humanity.”

Read more: OUSMANE SEMBÈNE’S BLACK GIRL IS ONE OF THE YEAR’S MOST IMPORTANT CINEMATIC EVENTS by Matthew Eng