Review: ‘Finch’ has Tom Hanks in fine form on a post-apocalyptic road trip with a naive robot and a dog

There are a few basic premises for films that are simply pure, and two of them are the road trip movie and the boy and his dog movie. You can find countless examples of each, and I am sure they have been mashed up before as well. That’s the case again in Finch, a road trip story starring Tom Hanks and an adorable dog, but that also happens to be set after the end of the world and co-starring your latest favourite movie robot of the year.

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Home Video: The Films of Chloé Zhao and Where To Buy, Rent, or Stream Them

Chloé Zhao is on a role. Her first three features were all critical darlings, and the third received numerous awards and accolades. Now, she has been tapped by Marvel to direct their latest blockbuster, The Eternals. The word isn’t out yet if her style will translate, but in the meantime, her first three features are all definitely worth your time.

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Review: ‘Portraits From A Fire’ comes of age through filmmaking

There are many fundamental truths in this world, and one of them is that creative people will create. Tyler (William Magnus Lulua), a boy growing up on northern BC’s Tsilhqotʼin reserve, makes films. He borrows household items from the community to use as props and screens them in a makeshift open-air cinema. When his latest film is only attended by a handful of people, many of whom then leave to go to bingo night, Tyler decides he needs to make something more personal.

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Raindance ’21 Review: ‘Listen’ is heavy-handed, but heart-wrenching

In the United Kingdom exists a system of child welfare. That is to say, like all first world countries, there is a governmental body whose sole task is to look out for the wellbeing of children. The UK government has a strict system, and one outcome of children being removed from a family is forced adoption. Forced adoption is exactly what it sounds like: if the state deems the parents unfit, they will adopt the children out to a family they believe are.

This practice has generated fierce criticism, especially from those who believe that the system errs far too often on the side of adopting the children rather than reuniting the family. Spoiler alert: Listen is made by people who share this belief.

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Heads Up: Raindance Film Festival is on now!

2021 Raindance Festival_Header

Good news UK friends! Raindance Film Festival is on now! This year we will be doing some limited coverage of the festival so look for some reviews on the site using the Raindance 2021 tag!

The full list of features playing at the festival is available on the Raindance website. This festival is geo-locked to the UK so whenever possible we will include Canadian distribution information.


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Heads Up: The 2021 Blood in the Snow Festival starts today!

2021 BitS Festival_Header

Good news, everyone! The 2021 Blood in the Snow Festival is happening once again. This Canadian festival of horror and genre films is taking place in two ways this year.

First up, from today (October 29th) to Sunday (October 31st), you can watch films on SuperChannel in Canada. Then, from November 18th to 23rd, there will be screenings in person at Toronto’s Royal Theatre.

You can follow along with all of our coverage using the BitS 2021 tag here on the site. In addition, we’ve already seen a few of the films at past festivals, so reviews are already there for you to read!

For full details on the line-up or to purchase tickets to the in-person screenings, check out the Blood in the Snow Website.

2021 Blood in the Snow

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Review: ‘Dune’ is a vast, beautiful film that loses sight of its emotional core

Dune

Expectation, thy name is Dune. Years in the making and then delayed for an entire year thanks to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, Dune has the weight of expectations hanging over it. Director Denis Villeneuve is an accomplished visionary with a clear eye for details and world-building alike, but how can the story of Dune –a famously dense work– be adapted into a movie?

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Review: ‘Army of Thieves’ is a fun heist movie

Only five months ago, Zack Snyder’s Army of the Dead premiered on Netflix and gave us a dumb but fun heist movie set amid a zombie apocalypse. While reception of the film was mixed (I liked it!), most people agreed that Matthias Schweighöfer’s character, a safecracker named Dieter, a highlight.

Netflix must have liked him too because they gave actor Matthias Schweighöfer a bunch of money to direct this prequel cantered on his character. You know what? It was money well spent.

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Home Video: The Universal Classic Monsters Movies and where to buy, rent, or stream them

Halloween is almost upon us, and what better time to reacquaint yourselves with the classics or watch them for the first time! The Universal Monsters have stood the test of time for a reason, each is a classic in its own right, and while this post is by no means an exhaustive list, it does have links for eight of the essential films in the canon.

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FNC ’21 Review: ‘Wildhood’ is a tender coming of age tale

No good comes from denying the self. If it seems like a thing easier said than done, that’s because it is. Living in a trailer park with his abusive father and staring down a road or petty crime and everything that follows, Wildhood is the story of a young man who is in so much self-denial that he is dying his hair blond in an effort to distance himself from his indigenous heritage, and that’s before he even begins to examine his sexuality.

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FNC ’21 Review: ‘The White Fortress’ sets young love among a divided city

The White Fortress

Young love set against a backdrop of crime is a tale as old as time. In The White Fortress, the story is set in modern-day Sarajevo and follows a young man called Faruk (Pavle Čemerikić) as he navigates the current realities of growing up poor in the politically divided city.

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Heads Up: The 2021 Festival du Nouveau Cinema is on now!

2021 Festival du Nouveau Cinema Festival_Header

Good news, everyone! Montreal’s Festival du nouveau Cinema is celebrating its 50th year this year! The in-person festival is over, but the online version runs through the end of October, and I will be covering it –albeit in a limited fashion.

Film are available to watch on the festival website, and you can follow my coverage here on the site using the FNC 2021 tag or click the banner below wherever you see it.

Festival du Nouveau Cinema

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VIFF ’21 Interview: Lauren Grant on her directorial debut short film ‘Things We Feel But Do Not Say’

Things We Feel But Do Not Say

Lauren Grant is a prolific producer of Canadian film and television, having worked on the series Killjoys as well as the films Riot Girls, Sugar Daddy and The Retreat just in the last two years. This year she also makes her debut as a director with her original short film Things We Feel But Do Not Say, which premiered as part of the shorts program at VIFF 2021. I had the pleasure of sitting down with Lauren on zoom to talk about the film.

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