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Drama

Reviews

Lore

By: Addison Wylie A great deal of unease works in filmmaker Cate Shortland’s favour.  Her dramatic period piece Lore always feels restless.  Characters – young and old – are constantly looking for stability and safety and the environments are always changing. That’s not to hint that Lore is inconsistent with a short attention span.  It’s a compliment that Shortland has found the perfect unsettling tone to allow all her elements to work on. Lore shows…

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The Days God Slept

By: Addison Wylie There are short films that get wrapped up in their own mysterious styles and murky vagueness, and then there’s Jeremiah Kipp’s The Days God Slept. Kipp’s short film skates awfully close to being just another brick in the surrealistic wall but its consistency to its characters and story is what saves it, making it a memorable watch. The Days God Slept gives the power to the audience to assume the context of…

Reviews

Inside Out 2013: In The Name Of

By: Addison Wylie The quiet character study In The Name Of is driven by a superb performance by Andrzej Chyra. His character of Father Adam is mesmerizing to watch. Chyra handles the subtleties that lie within his role and Adams’ motives so carefully. His readings and lines are filled with sincerity, subdued frustration, and hurt, but Chyra is able to tell all of this with a single hopeful glance. I really liked Malgorzata Szumowska’s film….

Reviews

Mud

By: Addison Wylie Set against a bluegrass backdrop, Ellis and his best friend Neckbone (both played exceptionally by Tye Sheridan and Jacob Lofland) scavenge through their surroundings to help a wayward, disheveled man named Mud find tools to rescue a tattered boat from out of a towering tree.  As they travel back to the island where Mud (played by a striking Matthew McConaughey) roams and hides, the three work together to carry out this seemingly…

Reviews

The Place Beyond the Pines

By: Addison Wylie With his latest feature film, writer/director Derek Cianfrance has already made his Magnolia with The Place Beyond the Pines, an excellent and expansive drama intertwining complex characters and haunting pasts with a twist of fate. This is, without a doubt, a step in the right direction for Cianfrance who made a name for himself rather quickly with 2010’s Blue Valentine.  I was a fan of the tightly wound performances in Blue Valentine,…

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To the Wonder

By: Addison Wylie Fresh off his enigmatic Oscar nominated The Tree of Life, Terrence Malick hits theatres (and VOD in the USA) with To the Wonder, a character study of sorts – but even I have a hard time calling it a straight “character study”. The film is a character study in the sense that Malick’s film has a loose story and a small ensemble portraying fictional people written by the complex director, but To…

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The Master

By: Addison Wylie The power of suggestion is afoot in The Master. Not just in the film itself, but it surrounded the film’s promotion and lead-up to its theatrical release. With the mention of a cult and a leader confidently guiding followers through his “rational thinking and cleansing”, many linked Paul Thomas Anderson’s latest to Scientology and to L. Ron Hubbard, the creator of the infamous religion. It struck controversy around the film and the…

Reviews

Ruby Sparks

By: Addison Wylie Life can imitate art and vies versa. For novelist Calvin Weir-Fields, he’s still trying to figure out where his encounter with Ruby falls. What an audience can be certain about though is that Jonathan Dayton and Valerie Faris’ Ruby Sparks always keeps things interesting. Calvin (played by Paul Dano) is a neurotic character – as all movie writers usually are. From Nicolas Cage’s portrayal of Charlie and Donald Kaufman in Adaptation. to…

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People Like Us

By: Addison Wylie Back when we all had a little bit more patience, it felt that films like People Like Us took up over half the screens at local movie theatres; most notably in the 90’s. Come to think of it, here’s a perfect example. With all the film’s scenes featuring characters talking about favourable vintage music, People Like Us has a High Fidelity vibe going for it. That’s not to say Alex Kurtzman’s film…

Reviews

A Thousand Words

By: Addison Wylie A Thousand Words is a film made for no one; especially if you’re a person who talks back to the screen. If you aren’t one of those loud patrons yet, A Thousand Words may very well convert you. It did for me. Eddie Murphy’s latest vehicle has his character Jack McCall having a tight leash on his vocabulary. After a mysterious tree grows in McCall’s backyard, he learns that with each word…