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TIFF Review: The People's Joker

In her introduction to the film’s Midnight Madness premiere screening, director/writer/star Vera Drew explicitly set the scene for what we were about to experience with The People’s Joker: “people do not want you to see this movie.”

How to Have an Audrey Hepburn Film Festival

Hot August nights are pretty much the ideal time to deep dive into the career of your favourite film stars or filmmakers. In the past, we’ve shown you how to throw your very own Colin Farrell Film Fest, and now we’re switching gears to bring you a guide to the great Ms. Hepburn. Audrey, not Katharine. Not that the fabulous Kate doesn’t deserve her own celebration but that’s a curated list for another day.

Director John Woo Talks of Birds, Knights, Musicals and more!

For decades John Woo has been revered as an iconic action director. Films like The Killer and Hard-Boiled helped define a style of Hong Kong cinema that was as groundbreaking as it was viscerally exciting. With a poetic use of violence and gunplay, it’s easy to see—through the likes of The Raid, John Wick or even the Fast and Furious films—a direct connection to Woo’s pioneering brand of thrills.

Interview: Director Dean Fleischer Camp on Marcel the Shell With Shoes On

For a movie about the tiniest of stop-motion animated creatures, Marcel the Shell with Shoes On is jam-packed with big heart and big ideas. Dean Fleischer Camp’s delightful directorial feature debut tackles the concepts of community, grief, fear, love, and connection, and all through the eyes of an adorable one-inch-tall shell (voiced by Jenny Slate) and his grandmother (voiced by Isabella Rossellini).

The Best Films of 2022 So Far: Marvels vs. the Mavericks

Surveying the best films of 2022 offers a mixed state of the union. Movie theatres, after nearly two years of COVID-19 closures in Toronto, are open and full of flicks. However, nearly every multiplex in town is screening the same few films. That rarely happened in 2019.

The 25 Best Biopics of All Time, Ranked

Biopics are the tomatoes of cinema. Whether one calls them bio-pics or bi-opics, they’re a staple of every awards show. Actors with Oscars in their eyes don gobs of make-up, wigs, fatsuits, and fake accents in service of juicy roles that often define their careers. Or, in Faye Dunaway’s case, ruin them. The path of the biopic is a tricky one, though, since they can be as formulaic as a 1940s’ western. For all the spinning newspapers and trips to rehab,…

7 Things You Need to Know About Lightyear

As audiences return to local cinemas after two years of lockdown, Hollywood is hoping that the nostalgia factor will be the incentive needed to jump-start the summer box office. First up were two highly anticipated live-action adventures–Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness and Top Gun: Maverick–and now Disney/Pixar is bringing us the definitive origin story of one of their most popular animated characters, Buzz Lightyear. The Space Ranger (originally voiced by Tim Allen) has been a massive part of the multi-decade…

Interview: David Cronenberg talks CRIMES OF THE FUTURE, Toronto, and more!

David Cronenberg is a giant in history of Canadian filmmaking, beloved internationally and yet, implausibly, somewhat taken for granted here in his home country. Sure, he gets attention for some of his previous works, and a dedicated group of genre fans are quick to sing his praises, but somehow, it doesn’t seem like enough given his impact on the world’s stage for his unapologetically Canadian sensibility. Back at Cannes after almost a decade, he returns to the Croisette with Crimes of…

David Cronenberg Sees People As The Flesh Bags That They Are

David Cronenberg’s films offer a brutal truth: that humans are merely meat. This is not to say that cannibalism is the norm for him. Rather than emphasizing any potential consumption or digestion of bodies, he takes a look at humanity through the lens of our physical reality and the possibilities therein. Any person is capable of being broken down into the elements of flesh and bone, blood and guts. Cronenberg’s posit sits underneath all of his films, rising closer to…

Patricia Rozema Interview: On Belonging, Identity, and Ignoring the Noise

“I couldn’t imagine you’d be 63, still in a state of wonder and curiosity about who you are and who you’re becoming,” director, writer, and producer Patricia Rozema tells me over Zoom from her home in Toronto. “I once had a playwright say, ‘all your works about belonging and not belonging.’ And I thought, that sounds true, but isn’t that everyone’s?”

The Criterion Shelf: Starring Delphine Seyrig

It took a while for Delphine Seyrig to become Delphine Seyrig, and that’s not a bad thing. In a business mainly preoccupied with youth and beauty, particularly celebrating and quickly using up female youth and beauty, the excitement of an ingénue who gets it right on their first try at movie stardom is often a matter of much-lauded excitement: entire festivals at Cannes have been spent celebrating the genius newcomer (it’s even lampooned in a very bad Henry Jaglom film),…

Simple but Complicated: The Short Films of Sophy Romvari

As we anticipate her first feature, it’s the perfect time to indulge in Sophy Romvári’s short films, which are now on The Criterion Channel. The big debut is still in development. The Toronto filmmaker told me of her excitement of working with a great team and about how “it’s a big step forward in terms of scope and budget.”

YOU Haven't Seen MAGIC MIKE?!

"YOU Haven't Seen" is a monthly column that celebrates milestone movie anniversaries. This month, Marko Djurdjic goes back to 2012 and watches Steven Soderbergh’s sweat-inducing, butt-shaking opus, MAGIC MIKE, for the very first time.

A Look Back At Jean-Marc Vallée’s Café De Flore

Google reviews of Jean-Marc Vallée’s 2011 drama Café de Flore and you’ll discover that there are two deeply divided camps regarding the film. One side praises the film’s charm and emotional puzzles, citing how the overarching theme stayed with them long after the credits rolled, while the other singles out its male gaze and frustrating time jumps, which come together in an overwrought climax. While I was firmly in the latter camp on first viewing, time and life has provided…

The Criterion Shelf: Starring Harry Belafonte

The most exciting moment in Spike Lee’s BlacKkKlansman has to be the single-scene appearance of a ninety-one year-old Harry Belafonte. The veteran actor gives the film added context by delivering a monologue about the murder of Jesse Washington in 1916 Texas. In showing how much charisma the performer still retains at his age (and during a retirement that he agreed to interrupt for this one day shoot after his doctor finally permitted it), the scene is so deeply satisfying.

Bob Saget (1956-2022)

Bob Saget, the legendary comedian and performer who mixed popular entertainment on shows like Full House with his unique and acerbic sense of humour and bristling stand-up delivery, has died at age 65.

The Criterion Shelf: Fox Noir

The genre of film noir got underway at the beginning of the forties, inspired as it was by the dark perspectives brought on by World War II. Twentieth Century-Fox joined every other studio in capitalizing on their popularity almost immediately with the release of their first entry, I Wake Up Screaming in 1941. Talking about film noir tends to bring our minds to popular Warner Bros. classics like The Maltese Falcon and The Big Sleep, tales of Los Angeles detectives and double-crossing blondes, but Fox had its own spin…

Interview: Director Will Sharpe on The Electrical Life of Louis Wain

At first glance, The Electrical Life of Louis Wain might seem like an enjoyable but paint-by-numbers British biopic. Naturally, you’ve got the pedigreed casting (Benedict Cumberbatch, Claire Foy), a life story filled with both comedy and tragedy, and of course, frames fairly bursting with picture-perfect period costumes and set designs. Nothing to sneeze at, certainly, but also nothing that particularly stands out. And that’s what might’ve been had this particular film not found the perfect marriage of director and subject. The subject is…

He Saved Latin: A Wes Anderson Retrospective

Today, after two delays and more than 17 months since it was set to premier at Cannes, Wes Anderson’s new film, The French Dispatch, is finally being released in cinemas. In order to celebrate this momentous (it is, right? Movies are back, people!) occasion, we take a look back at Anderson’s sprawling, whimsical, and oftentimes biting filmography.