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Reviews

Backspot

My appreciation for Backspot moves like a teeter-totter.  While it’s worth congratulating the filmmakers for not giving in to sports clichés, the movie may have benefited from more melodrama.

Reviews

The King Tide

Newfoundlander director Christian Sparkes (Hammer) seems as though he dipped into A24’s back catalogue to draw inspiration for his effective east coast chiller The King Tide. While there may be stylistic similarities to David Eggers’ work (The Witch, The Lighthouse) and Ari Aster’s movies (Hereditary, Midsommar), Sparkes’ ominous dramatic thriller doesn’t necessarily resemble Canada’s usual output. At least, not since Denis Côté’s Ghost Town Anthology.

Reviews

The Movie Man

The Princess Diaries The Dark Knight The Secret Life of Pets Mission: Impossible – Fallout These are the four movies I’ve seen at Highlands Cinema in Kinmount, Ontario.  Four completely different movies with a ubiquitous moviegoing experience; provided by the theatre, its staff, and owner Keith Stata.  It’s only fair to present my bias before reviewing The Movie Man, Matt Finlin’s documentary about Stata’s legacy and the history of his DIY multiplex.  Located in the…

Reviews

Be Still

Based on the play of the same name by Canadian playwright Janet Munsil, Be Still is an experimental biopic about the work and emotional pain endured by Vancouver photographer Hannah Maynard.

Reviews

North of Normal

Based on the memoir North of Normal by Canadian author Cea Sunrise Person, Carly Stone’s drama of the same name is about a very interesting mother-daughter dynamic that’s been influenced by an unconventional upbringing and the ripple effect made by varying degrees of neglect.

Reviews

So Much Tenderness

So Much Tenderness reunites me with Colombian-Canadian filmmaker Lina Rodriguez eight years after reviewing her feature-length debut Señoritas.  While I can see a bit of growth between then and now, Rodriguez is still stuck in her naturalistic, fly-on-the-wall approach to personal character studies.

Reviews

Bones of Crows

The exposure of Canada’s reprehensible history with its former residential school system and the overall injustice towards this country’s Indigenous population keeps garnering attention. Written and directed by Marie Clements (The Road Forward), Bones of Crows is the latest movie to continue presenting the contemporary prejudice that mirrors the past.

Reviews

BlackBerry

Using his previous film, the embellished period thriller Operation Avalanche, as a stepping stone towards his latest feature, Canadian renegade Matt Johnson takes another crack at the biopic genre with BlackBerry.  Director Johnson (co-writing with frequent collaborator/producer Matthew Miller) chronicles the rise and fall of the titular game-changing portable device that allowed users online access and exclusive text-based communication.