April 2017

Festival Coverage

Hot Docs 2017: ’78/52′ and ‘Motel’

78/52 (DIR. Alexandre Philippe) It’s a testament to Alfred Hitchcock’s talent as a filmmaker that he directed the shower scene from Psycho and he is still known for things other than that;  any other director would have simply become known by that singular sequence.  Even though, that particular scene may well be the single most studied, analyzed and deconstructed scene in the history of cinema and, as a part of this tradition, there is Alexandre…



There is a horror renaissance going on right now that everyone should be excited about.  The genre has struggled to keep up with the horrors of the real world and has returned to top form;  with many of the best films of the last few years coming from the auteurs of screams.  One of these films, a film which made this critic’s top ten list last year, is Julia Ducournau’s Raw, which is finally getting…

Festival Coverage

Hot Docs 2017: ‘My Enemy, My Brother’ and ‘PACmen’

My Enemy, My Brother (DIR. Ann Shin) In 2015, Ann Shin documented a rather unusual event: an Iranian child soldier, Zahed, had recently had a chance encounter with an Iraqi soldier, Najah, whom he had saved during the Iran-Iraq war, at a Vancouver institution for survivors of torture.  This chance encounter had made the two men friends.  This anomaly had led to the short film My Enemy, My Brother.  Now, Hot Docs is home to the…


Wylie Writes’ One-On-One with Shimon Dotan

Israeli filmmaker Shimon Dotan’s previous efforts have earned him recognition in his home country, where he has won nine Israeli Academy Awards for his work as a writer, producer, and director.  Though most of his films are narrative-based, the documentary Hot House (2006) earned acclaim when it premiered at the Sundance Film Festival.



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.