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Drama

Festival Coverage

TIFF 2022: ‘So Much Tenderness’

Environmental lawyer Aurora (Noëlle Schönwald) has sought out refuge in Canada after her husband is mysteriously killed. She flees across the border from Columbia and then, after some additional information is explained about Aurora’s backstory, the film fast-forwards to the refugee’s contemporary lifestyle in Toronto. Despite finding new roots and separating herself from the past, recent sightings of her late husband around the city have Aurora second-guessing her identity.

Reviews

Medieval

Filmed against the lush hills of the Czech Republic, writer/director Petr Jákl’s historical action-epic about the early life of Czech national hero Jan Zizka (Ben Foster of Hell or High Water and Hustle) is an intense sensory experience that stumbles on its intricate politics.

Festival Coverage

TIFF 2022: ‘I Like Movies’

Set in the early-2000s, I Like Movies alternates between the double life of 17-year-old Burlington native Lawrence Kweller (Isiah Lehtinen) as an outspoken high school senior and an obsessive film buff at his local video store, Sequels Video.  Lawrence is an opinionated know-it-all under both roofs, but he feels more in his element at Sequels and is elated when they finally hire him on as an employee.

Reviews

Sharp Stick

I can’t remember that last time I wanted to grab the reigns of a movie as badly as I did while watching Sharp Stick, Lena Dunham’s return to directing self-written material since her acclaimed HBO series Girls.  With this latest endeavour, Dunham is heading in a good direction with interesting and peculiar characters and then, two-thirds through the movie, Sharp Stick takes a hard turn into another character arc that seems like an unfair trade-off…

Reviews

Bliss

Sex work is just another shitty job in Bliss, a tender and moving exploration of queer love and intimacy written and directed by German filmmaker Henrika Kull (Intimate Distance, Jibril).

Reviews

Vortex

Hot on the heels of Gaspar Noé’s intense split-screen short Lux Æterna is the filmmaker’s feature-length split-screen endeavour Vortex, and I appreciate the opportunity to watch and review these movies (pretty much) back-to-back.

Reviews

The Royal

Directed by Marcel Sarmiento (The ABCs of Death [D Is for Dogfight], Faceless) and written by Gregory W. Jordan, The Royal is based on the true story of Willie Mays Aikens, a star hitter for the Kansas City Royals (and the Toronto Blue Jays!) who was sentenced to 20 years in prison for drug possession.  Before his arrest, Aikens was one of the top sluggers in major league baseball, hitting a total of 110 home runs…

Reviews

Ninjababy

Crossing the relatable narcissism of The Worst Person in the World with the awkward yet well-intentioned heart of Obvious Child, the uniquely titled pregnancy dramedy Ninjababy is an absolute winner.

Reviews

Apples

Produced and completed during our current era of COVID, Apples is a strange and accidentally timely import from Greece, following a vacant mind (Aris Servetalis) during the early stages of a pandemic that’s quietly sweeping over the public.  Victims who are affected by the unknown sickness lose their memory at the drop of a hat.  Those who don’t have any immediate support are referred to a rehabilitation program for the unidentifiable where they must complete…