nîpawistamâsowin: We Will Stand Up exhibits how strong voices can persevere during tragic times. Not since Matt Shepard Is a Friend of Mine has a documentary been made with this much love for a life lost.
Assholes: A Theory (DIR. John Walker) After being inspired by Aaron James’ book Assholes: A Theory, documentarian/cinematographer John Walker set out to make a movie of the same name that would explore the lifestyle of the supremely arrogant. The results are fairly satisfying, more or less, but it’s hard to make a case that the film is focused.
At a time where democracy is in danger of losing its way, it is necessary to ask a few questions regarding the next steps towards putting democracy back on the right path, and whether democracy is even a system worth saving. Astra Taylor’s NFB-produced What is Democracy? attempts that feat but, unfortunately, comes up short.
Signs posted around a low-income housing block in Toronto announcing “new developments” promises desirable changes, but it’s the community who are woefully anticipating the shift. This upcoming demolition, in pending stages of growth, means permanent relocation for these residents. Kids and teenagers are encouraged to direct their focus on other, less stressful interests, such as poetry and music.
A Better Man seems to have a concise albeit well-filmed production. It’s structured around a few confrontational chats and therapy sessions, along with a brief tour of pivotal locations mattering to filmmaker Attiya Khan and ex-lover Steve. The truth is A Better Man has been 20-plus-years in the making.
Spookers (DIR. Florian Habicht) Spookers focuses on the Watsons, a New Zealand family who has run one of the most successful scare attractions out of an old psychiatric ward.
By: Addison Wylie It takes patience to mull thorough Mark Lewis’ Invention. However, even the calmest movie goers may find themselves jiggling their leg and looking at their watch. Invention features visual artist Lewis and a wandering, hovering camera (driven by cinematographers Bobby Shore and Martin Testar) visiting Toronto, Paris, and Sao Paulo. His feature film debut asks audiences to find fascination in minor details. The camera floats, locks in on open, negative space and waits for…
By: Addison Wylie TIFF’s Canadian roots are more than prominent in the Short Cuts Canada programmes. Alexander Rogalski and Magali Simard – two of the festival’s programmers – have selected what they feel are the cream of the short form crop. They’ve included filmmakers with impassioned voices and integral visions, and they’ve even included some touched up classics. It’s expected that The National Film Board of Canada would be involved in this showcase somehow. Their…
Out of all the festivals I’ve ever covered, the Hot Docs Film Festival is one of my favourites. It’s a festival that always promises a deep array of different types of documentaries from a variety of different countries. It’s very hard to find one doc that resembles another in Hot Docs. The press conference held at Toronto’s Bloor Hot Docs Theatre on March 18 certainly built the buzz well. The audience had the pleasure of…