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Gravity

By: Addison Wylie Your preconceived notions that Gravity will make your heart leap out of your chest and your stomach lurch are right on the money. The disorienting sci-fi separates the weak from the willing with its prolonged, wandering introduction to the team aboard the Explorer.  We see mission specialist Dr. Ryan Stone (played by Sandra Bullock) hard at work while astronaut/commander Matt Kowalski (played by George Clooney) supervises. The operation is going as planned…

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Wylie Writes at Toronto After Dark ’13: Finding Disturbed Love

If you’ve been keeping up with my writing at Film Army, you would’ve been more than acquainted with our coverage of this year’s Toronto After Dark Film Festival. The festival which focuses on bringing hardcore genre films (short and feature length) to eager audiences has been stronger than last year but still hit-and-miss. While gems like We Are What We Are and Big Ass Spider! had audiences glued, other horrors like Silent Retreat and Septic…

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The Frozen Ground

By: Addison Wylie The Frozen Ground tells a harrowing true story in a plain Jane conventional way.  The emotional weight and stress in the hunt for a notorious Alaskan serial killer rings, but its narrative formatting is determined to make it unmemorable, placing Scott Walker’s film awash in a homicidal sea with other generic crime thrillers. The Frozen Ground feels dialled back regarding its aggressiveness towards the audience and its lead performance from Nicolas Cage…

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Europa Report

By: Addison Wylie Europa Report made my head throb from boredom and ache from excessive visual irritations.  But before all that negativity, Sebastián Cordero’s found footage sci-fi opened my mind with its art direction and effects. Europa Report’s most impressive strength is its ability to make the audience feel as if we’re in that same spaceship as the featured crew members heading to Europa, one of Jupiter’s moons.  Cordero has used subtleties to blend numerous…

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TIFF 2013: How I Live A Confused Life

By: Addison Wylie Kevin MacDonald’s adaptation of Meg Rosoff’s novel How I Live Now is a bit of a struggle for movie goers trying to figure out what type of movie this is.  Mostly because How I Live Now has two sets of confusion working for and against it. MacDonald begins his film on an aggressive note to mirror the personality of our lead, Daisy (played by Saoirse Ronan).  While it fulfils its goal, the rebellious…

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The Good Lie

By: Addison Wylie Shawn Linden’s The Good Lie is good looking and straightforward with its premise that instantly hooks you. A normal high schooler named Cullen (played by Thomas Dekker) is devastated after being pulled out of class to find out his mother Doris (played by Julie LeBreton) has died in a car accident.  He’s even more upset after learning he’s the product of a horrific rape.  Furious and upset, Cullen sets out to find…

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Comforting Skin

By: Addison Wylie For audiences needing a psychological horror fix, Derek Franson’s Comforting Skin may do just the trick. It certainly did for me. It’s a film that starts unsteadily as our main lead is introduced to us.  Koffie (yes, that’s her name, and she’s played terrifically by Victoria Bidewell) is down and out and feeling as if no one wants anything to do with her.  She’s dishevelled, has a past that hasn’t been bright,…

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Side Effects

By: Addison Wylie Steven Soderbergh’s alleged “last movie” Side Effects is one half murder mystery and another half docudrama about the pharmaceutical industry. It only truly excels at being one of these, but the film is interesting nonetheless from start to finish. Emily Taylor, an often distraught wife played by Rooney Mara, greets her hubby (played by Channing Tatum) after he’s been incarcerated for a lengthy prison term. Life is seemingly back to normal, but…

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Dark Skies

By: Addison Wylie Dark Skies wants its moviegoers to leave slightly chilled, but, instead we leave feeling cold. As the credit crawl began and the lights dimmed back on, you could feel the waft from everyone’s shoulders shrugging as they huffed out of the theatre. The unenthused reaction isn’t because Dark Skies is a bad movie, but because we don’t like seeing something that had so much potential settle with being “just ok”. One would…

Reviews

Safe Haven

By: Addison Wylie It’s been only a couple of hours since my screening of the latest Nicholas Sparks movie adaptation, and I’m still having difficulty figuring out how to critique it without giving away any spoilers or crucial plot points. Safe Haven may not look like the type of movie that warrants a cautious review, but it’s a twisty film that can be uncovered by the simple slip of a certain character’s name. The first…