At the same time John Turturro’s Big Lewbowski spin-off The Jesus Rolls bowls into theatres, a more faithful adaptation of the Coen Brothers’ style and wit is released – Albert Shin’s Disappearance at Clifton Hill.
The Jesus Rolls, a semi-spiritual sequel to 1998’s cult classic The Big Lebowski, is a film for those who watched the original Coen Brothers comedy and became enamoured by John Turturro’s character. It’s hard not to be distracted by the sheer weirdness of Jesus Quintana, infamous sex offender and intimidating bowler. Turturro played the role curiously in a way that made audiences wonder “outside of the bowling alley, what’s life like for The Jesus?”
Ordinary Love is a superb drama with slight notes of ice-breaking wit. It’s orchestrated along the same lines as 2017 Oscar nominee The Big Sick or last year’s Netflix sleeper Paddleton (both of which, funnily enough, co-star Ray Romano but I digress), only the premise of a middle-aged married couple coming to terms with an alarming cancer diagnosis is played, as expected, a bit more sullen.
The Lodge thinks its rooted in gothic horror when its misery might actually be post-emo. Suicide is predominant in this macabre thriller from Austrian filmmakers Severin Fiala and Veronica Franz (Goodnight Mommy) and while it seems to be a topic used to explore the mourning identities of the film’s characters, it’s mostly in existence to add moody atmospheric chills. Surface-level stuff, but very effective.
Jojo Rabbit, written and directed by Taika Waititi, is a risqué movie that reminded me of classic comedies made by the legendary Mel Brooks. The film risks being offensive to lampoon racism, including its different perspectives by persecuting followers, and to draw parallels to current arrogant behaviour thrusted upon minorities. Waititi solves the puzzle to make his satire work, but also doesn’t distill the severity of past hate crimes in this period piece.
Standing Up, Falling Down is a really nice dramedy about people finding and relating to each other. It’s funny, touching, performed well, and directed with fluency by newcomer Matt Ratner. As far as movies go about characters leaning on comedy as a crutch to hide their true emotions, the film is the best of its kind since Judd Apatow’s Funny People.
By: Trevor Chartrand It doesn’t take a car enthusiast to enjoy the high-octane drama that fuels Ford v Ferrari, one of the best movies of 2019. Director James Mangold (Walk the Line, Logan) helms this fast paced, in-your-face film that’s based on the true story of the ‘car wars’ that took place in the late 1960s. The film comes fully loaded with a classic look, (mostly) strong characters, and a tight, focused story. Ford v Ferrari…
There seems to be an unhealthy trend of shooting and wrapping film productions within a short time frame (A Fall from Grace, Appiness). But for Toronto indie Space & Time, writer/director Shawn Gerrard sees the appeal of a patient process. Space & Time has been shot over the period of 11 months; allowing the film to naturally capture the passage of, well, space and time. This lends a potentially special quality to the film’s story…
Black Panther’s Chadwick Boseman plays Andre Davis, a stoic NYPD detective who was psychologically affected at a young age by the murder of his father, a policeman in the line of fire. From that tragedy, Davis developed a certain alertness to his job but the experience has made him mentally withdrawn from situations and company. Peers are either impressed with his work or intimidated by his reputation. Davis invests all of his passion in his most…
Wylie Writes is a little late to be weighing in on the stinkers of 2019, but can you blame us? Reliving these memories doesn’t come easy. Strap in and, don’t forget, click on the blue highlighted titles to read the critic’s review.