Lucy review

Written and directed by Luc Besson I don't think I've ever used the word "gawp" in one of my reviews, but here we go: I couldn't help but repeatedly gawp at the screen while watching Lucy. Early on, French director Luc Besson feels it necessary to splice a stock footage of a mouse approaching a…Read More

Mad Max: Fury Road gets a trailer

This weekend was the San Diego Comic-Con, the biggest event in geek culture. Typically, it's when Hollywood studios preview their upcoming slate of fantasy and genre pictures. I gather the panel for and clips from Avengers: Age of Ultron (coming in April 2015) were pretty impressive. But what I'm probably most excited about is the first Mad…Read More

In Cinemas. July 25, 2014

It's my birthday. What can I go and see to celebrate it? I'm gonna see Lucy. As I mentioned in my summer preview, Luc Besson is a guy with a spotty cinematic track record. He can be amazing (La Femme Nikita, The Fifth Element, The Extraordinary Adventures of Adele Blanc-Sec) and pretty crummy (The Messenger:…Read More

Snowpiercer review

Directed by Joon-ho Bong, written by Bong and Kelly Masterson, based on the graphic novel Le Transperceneige by Jacques Lob, Benjamin Legrand, and Jean-Marc Rochette In the sea of summer releases—many loud, over-budgeted and over-marketed—it's sometimes easy to miss a gem that only gets shown in a few cinemas in North America before settling into…Read More

Obvious Child review

Directed by Gillian Robespierre, Written by Robespierre, Karen Maine, and Elizabeth Holm, based on a short film by Robespierre, Maine, and Anna Bean I can't tell you how great it is to see a film like this with characters who speak like people I know, about the politics and reality of modern life for women…Read More

In Cinemas. July 18, 2014

Hello, everyone. This is In Cinemas, what I hope will be a semi-regular series where I'll inform readers in Halifax—and beyond—what's playing on local screens, what is recommended, and what you'd best avoid, all in one handy (and brief) blog post. So, with brevity in mind, here we go. Opening Disney continues to diminish Pixar's rep…Read More

Begin Again review

Written and directed by John Carney Eight years ago, Irish filmmaker and musician Carney directed a wonderful little film called Once, about a longtime busker who takes a young pianist under his wing. It was a shot-on-a-shoestring delight, and the song that brought them together went on to win an Oscar.  Carney made another little-seen Irish movie,…Read More

Dawn of the Planet of the Apes review

Directed by Matt Reeves, Written by Mark Bomback, Rick Jaffa, Amanda Silver, from a novel by Pierre Boulle I enjoyed Rise of the Planet of the Apes, released back in 2011. It seemed an unlikely prequel to a 43-year-old film, but as a slab of b-movie entertainment I thought it worked. My biggest beef with…Read More

The Movie Star Roster 2014

Jack Nicholson once said, and I'm paraphrasing, here, that anyone who gets to be a lead in a Hollywood movie has something special. Why? Because too many people want it. If the star didn't have some of that magic pixie dust that appeals to audiences, someone else would have gotten the gig. That shit doesn't…Read More

My Problem with Forrest Gump

I hated this movie. When Forrest Gump came out 20 years ago this weekend, I was really annoyed by it. I saw it in Ottawa, and I remember exiting the cinema just cheesed off. I wasn't even sure what it was that bothered me so much, just the distinct feeling I'd been proselytized to. Next…Read More