Set in the Roncesvalles neighbourhood of Toronto, Great Great Great is the story of Lauren (Sarah Kolasky) and Tom (Dan Beirne), a couple in their early thirties whose relationship is coasting along steadily despite Tom’s inability to find steady employment as an urban planner. Nothing about Lauren and Tom‘s life is particularly awful: they eat food, they go to the gym, they have relationships with friends and family. Everything begins to fall apart when Lauren‘s parents…
Writer/director Pat Mills follows up his 2015 comedy Guidance with the equally hilarious Don’t Talk to Irene. However, his latest flick is certainly cut from a quirkier cloth, but that doesn’t make it any less sarcastic. It’s certainly one of the funniest films of the year.
A documentary about The Tragically Hip’s Man Machine Poem Tour needed to be made. After all, it was a pivotal imprint in modern Canadian culture as the entire nation collectively considered the band’s timeless legacy and paid respects to terminally ill musician Gord Downie. Finding filmmakers to handle such sensitive subject matter would be an intimidating order, yet Jennifer Baichwal (Watermark) and Nicholas de Pencier (cinematographer on The Ghosts in Our Machine) rise to the occasion and exceed…
By: Jessica Goddard Kathleen Hepburn’s Never Steady, Never Still is a serious, greyscale, dragging meditation on subjects so inherently sombre, it’s practically masochistic to sit through the whole film without allowing yourself a break.
By: Jessica Goddard Mina Shum’s Meditation Park is an engaging, quirky, and empowering film about the overdue self-actualization of a Vancouver woman (Cheng Pei-pei) in light of the discovery of her husband’s affair. This thoroughly modern film also expertly highlights the immigrant experience in multicultural Canada, while making clear that the narrative is culturally universal. There is an exquisite balance of humour and poignancy in the writing, strengthened by an excellent cast.
Despite all the less-than-stellar changes made to TIFF this year, the festival continues to excel in giving a voice to Canadian filmmakers and video artists. Representatives of TIFF, once again, gathered in the Fairmont Royal York hotel to announce Canadian films which will play at the festival this year and then – presumably – disappear into Canadian cinemas, where a few of them will compete with the latest Oscar bait and Hollywood slop.
Tyler Perry apologists may find pleasurable qualities in Sergio Navarretta’s The Colossal Failure of the Modern Relationship. Then again, even those movie goers have seen this sort of romantic peril too many times by now (the Why Did I Get Married? series).
My introduction to filmmaking duo Brett Butler and Jason Butler was imperfect. Prior to the release of their indie Mourning Has Broken, I interviewed Brett. He was an all-around standup guy who was grateful for when he and his brother won Ingrid Veninger’s “1K Challenge”, granting them access to make their dark comedy starring character actor Robert Nolan.
Movies can be delicious, such as this year’s rom-com Bakery in Brooklyn. Despite the fresh food, the charming chemistry between the two leading women is what made the film buoyant. On the other end of the scale, you have Menorca, which is deliciously bad. This film feeds us so much camp, we’re begging for more when the movie begins to clam up.
Kevan Funk’s Hello Destroyer, a complicated and clinical disclosure of the underlying traumas associated with hockey, was well-received at TIFF last year for a good reason: there aren’t many films brave enough to de-mythologize Canada’s national sport.