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The Fault in Our Stars

By: Addison Wylie Ever since The Notebook’s crowd pleasing fame, there’s been a line of Nicholas Sparks adaptations brought to the big screen.  Because these films have hit home runs at the box office, it wasn’t surprising to see other romantic book-to-film conversions follow suit. The trailer for The Fault in Our Stars gave off that cover of being “just another one of those romantic movies”.  Movie goers who have read and fallen in love with…

Reviews

The Double

By: Addison Wylie Stylistically, The Double is – so far – the best film I’ve seen all year. Richard Ayoade – an indie filmmaker who you may have recognized as “that random guy with the hair” on posters of 2012’s The Watch – brings a creation that does exactly what a film should do.  The Double transports viewers to another world.  Ayoade has built industrialized settings that emulate a rigid dream.  The filmmaker also uses…

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All Cheerleaders Die

By: Addison Wylie A high school ditzy clique suffers fatal injuries.  The clique are brought back from the dead using Wiccan rituals, leading the ragtag undead to seek revenge.  Yes, that premise is rote.  But, when it comes to telling a story that simple, I imagine it’d be hard to screw it up.  Surprisingly, the minds behind All Cheerleaders Die unfathomably do so. How do you do it?  How do you mess up a movie…

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Silent Retreat

By: Addison Wylie I have a bit of history with Silent Retreat. I caught Tricia Lee’s thriller at last year’s Toronto After Dark Film Festival where it received its fair amount of warm reception.  Though the filmmaker was clear about the film’s intentions in a post-Q&A, it was a pick at the festival that really rubbed me the wrong way. The flick’s primary problem was that it was dramatically overscored.  It’s smothering music told the…

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Burt’s Buzz

By: Addison Wylie Everyone, it’s safe to shake away your hesitations!  Burt’s Buzz does not fall in a quirky vein akin to Duck Dynasty. Comparing the backwoods clan who struck rich with their duck calling instruments and Burt Shavitz’s unintentional success with his line of all-natural creams and lip balms is bound to occur – based on physical appearance alone.  Jody Shapiro’s doc on Shavitz is as innocuous as a folksy reality show, but Burt’s…

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How to Train Your Dragon 2

By: Addison Wylie When a family favourite reaches for a sequel, the franchise has to be careful it doesn’t catch a case of contagious sequelitis.  For the much anticipated second part of the How to Train Your Dragon series, I’m happy to report that this latest adventure only suffers from slight sniffles.  Otherwise, this is the follow-up that the 2010 hit deserves. We’re reunited with Hiccup (voiced by Jay Barachel) and his colourfully named pals…

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Neighbors

By: Addison Wylie Neighbors has more than a handful of really good laughs.  It’s also consistently likeable and plays with its R-rating in a way that doesn’t feel too childish. Mac and Kelly (played by Seth Rogan and Rose Byrne) are concerned about losing touch with their more spontaneous sides after they move into a new neighbourhood.  They don’t hate their adult life though.  They get a kick out of their baby daughter – the…

Reviews

Brothers Hypnotic

By: Addison Wylie Brothers Hypnotic seems like it does everything right. It’s a good looking doc and an even better sounding one.  Filmmaker Reuban Atlas knows how to show how music can explode with vibrance as various crowds bob their heads happily.  All the songs that are featured and played by Hypnotic Brass Ensemble are great examples of the band’s range and how their chemistry expands their performance etiquette. The boys in the ensemble all…

Reviews

Being Ginger

By: Addison Wylie For a documentary that presents itself as poorly planned, imagine my elation when Scott P. Harris’ Being Ginger began winning me over with his accidental autobiographical doc. Harris had me beaming and declaring love towards his personal mission.  The filmmaker – who’s a red head himself – sets out across Edinburgh, Scotland to figure out why there’s so much of a disliking towards “gingers”, as well as why it’s so hard for…

Reviews

The Sacrament

By: Addison Wylie The Sacrament is rightfully a horror movie.  A damn unsettling one at that.  The problem is the film’s promotional materials may be steering audience expectations in a direction less suited for Ti West’s latest.  There’s no camp here.  Just tragedies. In my eyes, The Sacrament is much more of a dramatic reenactment than something that is strictly here to spook you.  It’s a horror in the same way some movie goers would…