I always love a little surprise at a film festival but that surprise is usually a little foreign gem and rarely does it manifest as a comedy and a Canadian one at that.
Last year’s VIFF brought both the awesomeness of Welcome to Me (trailer, review) and Preggoland (review). The latter is written and stars Sonja Bennett, a talented Canadian actress who you’ve probably seen gracing either your small screen or the silver screen. She’s been around for a while but her turn here as Ruth, a 30 something woman who fakes her pregnancy, is really star making. Not only is the script funnier and smarter than the concept has any right to be, Bennett has excellent comedic timing and the movie, which also co-stars James Caan and Danny Trejo in an unlikely but hilarious role, is a big winner.
The entire thing is directed by Jacob Tierney and that right there is indication that we’re in good hands, but Preggoland really defies expectation to deliver a great Canadian comedy the likes of which I haven’t seen since Starbuck (review).
Ever walk into a typical coffee shop, order a basic cup of joe and think to yourself, “well this is a much nicer brew of java than I would have expected!”? This is how we bookend this weeks review on the show. While we rarely dive into “the news” on The Cinecast, the passing of Leonard Nimoy, the magnificent Mr. Spock himself, is an important issue that both Andrew and Kurt feel needs addressing; as does Harrison Ford in another Blade Runner movie. Meanwhile, canines take over the city in White Dog God, which the boys discuss despite Andrew’s screener conking out at the halfway mark (Kurt managed to get it all in however).
In The Watch List, Andrew tackles two more films on the IMDb 250 Project after defending the choice of using such a list for viewing fodder, while Kurt caught up with a Wong Kar-Wai influenced piece of joy in Millenium Mambo as well. Kurt also gives a brief sneak review of Jay Cheel’s (FilmJunk.com) How to Build a Time Machine based on the current work-print (fair warning). Lastly, Liam Neeson goes smokes on airplanes and Anne Hathaway is cute then sexy. All in an evening’s work here in the third row.
Please join the conversation by leaving your own thoughts in the comment section below, and again, thanks for listening!
Our old site guru John reviewed Ink back in 2009 and gave it a rare four and a half out of five stars, refering to it as a film that “combines beautiful special effects with a large world and a very personal story of redemption into something that really is special.” Andrew and Matt spoke with Winans and star Chris Kelly at Flyway that year and praised it for its great story.
And indeed, it was special. It did have a great story. Flaws aside (what micro-budget film doesn’t have them?), it ended up as one of my ten favorites of the year.
So, it comes as a surprise to me that I missed the release of director-writer-composer Jamin Winans’s latest film, The Frame, which appears equally poetic, strange, and enjoyable.
I haven’t watched it yet, but I’m fairly confident that when I do this weekend, it’s going to be great. So, while you await my review, you can (and should) like the film’s Facebook page. Then you should go here and purchase it. While you’re at it, you should probably revisit Ink, by clicking here and spending a couple well-deserved dollars.
I‘ve been a fan of Ruba Nadda since I saw Cairo Time a couple of years ago and when the chance to speak to speak with the Canadian director about her new romantic thriller October Gale came up, I jumped at the opportunity.
I really likedOctober Gale when I saw it at VIFF last year. It’s not the darkest of thrillers but it’s a great story of the hardships of working through loss and features fantastic perfomrances from Patricia Clarkson, Scott Speedman and Tim Roth.
During our chat, Ms. Nadda and I talk about her recent fascination with thrillers, the art of on-screen chemistry and the difficulties, especially in today’s landscape, of romances that simmer just below the surface.
Guys! Jandy and I just got back from JUPITER ASCENDING and really enjoyed it. So much so, in fact, that we devoted 40-some minutes to talking about it in this week’s episode of NOT AT ODDS. Here’s the deal: we won’t go to mat for the flick, but we will tell you what worked for us and why we found this mess more enjoyable than some of the more polished fare we’ve seen lately. I also issue a dare that’s somewhat related to last week’s episode.
We’re not really sure where February went but here we are, looking forward to March and all it has to offer which, sadly, isn’t much. And yet Colleen, Dale (Letterboxd) and I (Letterboxd) do manage to find a few titles to get excited about. As usual.
Buckle up! Mamo does a crash course in House of Cardsology before pivoting hard into Fifty Shades of Grey, sexual fantasy, and the death of Leonard Nimoy. Only on this show, could those things all happen in 45 minutes. Plus, we welcome Let’s Scare Matthew Price to Death to the world of podcasting! Would you like to know more…?
Alex Garland is known for writing a number of science-fiction films, both 28 Days Later, Sunshine for Danny Boyle, as well as Adapting Kazuo Ishiguru’s novel Never Let Me Go for Mark Romanek, and even the most recent adaptation of dystopian-justice comic, Dredd.
Garland’s directorial debut is the single location, three-hander drama, Ex Machina, starring Oscar Isaac, Domhnall Gleeson and Alicia Vikander. It premieres in North America on March 15 (and has had a positive response from other markets for which the film is already in commercial release) at SXSW Festival, before a commercial release on April 10th.
A young programmer is selected to participate in a breakthrough experiment in artificial intelligence by evaluating the human qualities of a breathtaking female A.I.
“Want to see something cool?” Check out the trailer below.
Ahhh, Millennium Entertainment, prolific purveyor of second rate trash cinema, and the ersatz heir to Cannon/Golan-Globus. Usually I try to ignore their star-driven exercises in formula, but this one, directed by a woman (April Mullen), which might be a first for the company, caught my eye.
Canadian cult actress Katherine Isabelle (Ginger Snaps, American Mary) stars as an ass-kicking, Memento-memory’d woman out for revenge after a violent thug (Christopher Lloyd, chewing scenery magnificently) had her husband killed. Another cult Canuck actor, Michael Ironside (a personal favourite), plays the cop out to catch (or help?) her before she gets the job done. Blend that up with oversaturated colours, crazy shifts in tone, and other forms of acute lack of restraint and I am all in. Hopefully this Domino-lite will get some limited theatrical somewhere, but I’m not holding my breath considering it has been out on BLU-Ray in The US since January.