In Cinemas: Friday, October 16, 2015 — Bridge of Spies, Crimson Peak, Beeba Boys, Freeheld, Brand: A Second Coming, Goosebumps, Woodlawn, and more…

We still await the arrival of Steve Jobs, the Oscar-bait biopic getting a heavy push from a TV marketing campaign but it still hasn’t opened outside of Toronto.  Frustrating. I think we can expect it on October 23.

In the meantime, we have no lack of interesting material opening locally in cinemas. This weekend is one of the year’s single busiest for new movies on the big screen:


Whenever a new Steven Spielberg movie shows up, it’s an event. For me, even more so when it’s a spy thriller, partly because I’m a fan of the genre, and partly because one of Spielberg’s best pictures is spy thriller Munich, from 2006. So expectations are very high for Bridge of Spies, starring Tom Hanks, opening (annoyingly) out of downtown, in Bayers Lake and Dartmouth Crossing.

Another director with a terrific resume is Mexican fantasist Guillermo Del Toro, creator of Pan’s Labyrinth, Hellboy, and Pacific Rim. He describes Crimson Peak as a “gothic romance.” Based on the trailer, it looks a lot like a classic haunted house movie, reuniting Only Lovers Left Alive co-stars Mia Wasikowska and Tom Hiddleston, who are joined by Jessica Chastain. With this talent in front and behind the camera, this is a creepfest for which I am psyched.

Though director Deepa Mehta says thematically her gangster picture Beeba Boys is very much in tune with her body of work, it’s hard to watch this new Tarantino-inspired movie about Vancouver gun-toting dudes and not feel like this is something new from her, at least on the surface.


I didn’t love the movie, but I’m glad it exists and is now in cinemas. For more detail, go here.

Freeheld is being promoted as a serious issue movie based on the true story of a New Jersey cop who, diagnosed with cancer, wanted to leave her benefits to her same-sex partner but couldn’t do so under state law, so she campaigned to change the law. That it stars the excellent Julianne Moore, Ellen Page, Michael Shannon, and Steve Carell makes the film that much more of a draw, but I’m measuring my expectations based on the negative advance word. It’s in at The Oxford.

If you were hoping we’d get to see a documentary about British comedian, actor, and author Russell Brand’s transformation from cultural bad boy and tabloid fodder to fast-talking activist, it’s here: Brand: A Second Coming.

I expected better reviews from Freeheld, but I’m surprised by the positive notices I’m reading about Goosebumps, an adaptation of the popular RL Stine book series, starring Jack Black. I suspect there’s some real Joe Dante 1980s nostalgia going on here.

I’m sensing a trend: Woodlawn is Sean “Samwise Gamgee” Astin’s second faith-based feature this year, following Do You Believe? This one’s based on the true story of a high school football team that found Jesus in Birmingham, Alabama in the early 1970s, and, wouldn’t you know it, he helped them win a big game. Expect a tale of sports and faith overcoming racism.

If all those releases weren’t enough, there are a stack of one-night-only screenings you should know about.


Friday night at Carbon Arc, where I work, there’s a 7pm screening of The Wolfpack, the American documentary about a group of brothers who, locked in a Manhattan apartment for most of their childhood, found escape through movies. The advance tickets are sold out, but there will be a few available at the door.


Cineplex is showing Back To The Future and Back To The Future Part II on Wednesday, October 21, an important date for that franchise. I’ll be on CTV that morning to discuss it with my podcast pal Stephen Cooke. More details about that to come, and my review of the series. The entire franchise, including Part III, will screen October 25.

Also at Cineplex this week, the Capra classic Mr Smith Goes To Washington and William Friedkin’s none-more-scary 1970s horror classic The Exorcist. Click on my list of local cinemas (on this page, right hand column) for where and when those are playing.


About the author


Carsten Knox is a massive, cheese-eating nerd. In the day he works as a journalist in Halifax, Nova Scotia. At night he stares out at the rain-slick streets, watches movies, and writes about what he's seeing.