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Reviews

Ice Age: Collision Course

It’s hard to believe that Ray Romano, John Leguizamo, Denis Leary, and the animals they voice are on their fifth feature-length lap with the Ice Age series – that’s a long time for any franchise.  Then again, there’s always going to be a crowd for these adventurous, likeable mammals because Blue Sky Studios knows how to make a slick-and-quick movie for families.  Ice Age: Collision Course is no different.

Reviews

Underdogs

Like a near-death experience, I can recall the exact moment when I first watched the trailer for Underdogs.  The shabby preview – exchanging comedic pacing and intelligence for celebrity vocals that didn’t match the animation and a stupid premise – almost eclipsed the train wreck that followed it (Paul Blart: Mall Cop 2).

Reviews

Les Démons

Allow me to preface this by disclosing my biases: I have a strong love for Canadian cinema and coming-of-age stories, and I truly believe that Canada perfected the coming-of-age story.  That being said, Philippe Lesage’s Les Démons is a fitting addition to this obscure canon.

Reviews

Strange Magic

By: Addison Wylie Strange is right. Magic? Not so much. Oscar winner Gary Rydstrom takes a stab at feature length directing and writing with animated musical-fantasy Strange Magic, a movie that shouldn’t be anyone’s “first” for anything.  It begins as a novelty act with some redeeming moments of punchy animation and terrific duets, and then pushes its luck too far. The story (conceived by Star Wars’  George Lucas) gives audiences two opposing territories.  There’s a…

Reviews

Strangerland

By: Addison Wylie The characters in the Australian/Ireland import Strangerland are surrounded by miles of flatland.  The tattered town of Nathgari maintain a tight community, yet there is a sense of feeling forlorn and stranded.  Newly minted feature filmmaker Kim Farrant uses these qualities to effectively stir up restlessness and sputtering hope when her story of missing children is in full swing. Catherine and Matthew (played by Nicole Kidman and Joseph Fiennes) are still adapting…

Reviews

The Hero of Color City

By: Addison Wylie Sometimes, films directed at children – very, very young children – can be recommended based on how bright the visuals are.  If the entertainment isn’t stimulating through its story, the film will at least stimulate the senses through its colour palette. That’s sort of the case with The Hero of Color City, a mediocre kids film with not a whole lot to offer.  Frank Gladstone’s kiddie film is possibly the most literal…

Reviews

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

By: Addison Wylie For the past month, intrepid comedic actor Will Arnett has been promoting the bejesus out of his latest flick Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, a hyperactive reboot of the original heroes in a half shell.  He fearlessly sells his character (news cameraman Vernon Fenwick), the action sequences, and the New York City setting with utmost grit and spirited enthusiasm.  If Tommy Boy’s Tom Callahan could sell a ketchup popsicle to a woman in…

Festival Coverage

Wylie Writes @ TIFF Kids 2014: A Day With the Industry

  By: Addison Wylie I’ve enjoyed covering the TIFF Kids International Film Festival in the past, but this year was especially cool. This marked the first year for any festival where I obtained an industry pass.  The TIFF Kids Industry pass entitled you to sit in on exclusive conversations, workshops, keynotes, and Q&A’s.  The team behind the festival made sure they delivered on guests who could provide truthful insight about the world of filmmaking and…

Reviews

The Nut Job

By: Addison Wylie I have a theory about animated films aimed towards children that are headlined by The Weinstein Company.  And, The Nut Job gives me more material to work with. The Nut Job further solidifies my opinion that: the Weinsteins are severely out of touch with the youth of today, they think your children are dolts who will lap up anything animated, and they think you – the parent – are nothing more than…