11 items from 2016
Last year the The Globe & Mail released an article entitled "What is Wrong with the Canadian Film Industry?" that outlined the problems facing our country’s cinema: low box-office numbers, a crisis of English-Canadian identity, an inability to compete with Hollywood entertainments etc., etc. Focused entirely on the industry, the piece fails to mention the resurgence that had been taking root for quite some time. 2015 was an important year for Canadian cinema, but while Room, Hyena Road and Wet Bum ate up the article’s word count, three of the year’s great Canadian films by emerging directors went unnoticed: Isiah Medina’s 88:88, Kurt Walker’s Hit 2 Pass, and Kazik Radwanski’s How Heavy This Hammer. Equating cinema with ‘content,’ a product to be bought and sold, the article is as much a reflection of the problems with Canadian cinema as an exposition of it. But this insidious »
The Toronto International Film Festival has announced an additional selection of feature picks — all falling under the banner of Canadian-made films, appropriately enough — along with their Tiff Rising Stars group, the recipient of the Len Blum Residency and a selection of Canadian shorts. Major programming standouts including Xavier Dolan’s Cannes Grand Prix winner “It’s Only the End of the World” and Nathan Morlando’s Cannes debut “Mean Dreams.” Other films of note include April Mullen’s “Below Her Mouth” and Kim Nguyen’s Dane DeHaan-starring “Two Lovers and a Bear.”
This year’s Tiff Rising Stars — four Canadian actors who will take part in a series of specialized programming organized by Tiff’s Industry team — include Jared Abrahamson, Grace Glowicki, Mylène Mackay and Sophie Nélisse. Additional international Rising Stars will be announced in the coming weeks.
- Kate Erbland
With a seemingly endless amount of streaming options — not only the titles at our disposal, but services themselves — we’ve taken it upon ourselves to highlight the titles that have recently hit the interwebs. Every week, one will be able to see the cream of the crop (or perhaps some simply interesting picks) of streaming titles (new and old) across platforms such as Netflix, iTunes, Amazon Instant Video, and more (note: U.S. only). Check out our rundown for this week’s selections below.
The Films of Albert Brooks
We can think of no better way to celebrate the holiday weekend then curling up with the hilarious, often touching films of Albert Brooks. All of his directorial features — Real Life, Modern Romance, Lost in America, Defending Your Life, Mother, The Muse, and Looking For Comedy in a Muslim World — have now been added to Netflix. What are you waiting for? »
- The Film Stage
Winner of the Best Canadian First Feature at Tiff and Best Canadian Feature in Vancouver after bowing at Cannes last May, Andrew Cividino‘s feature-length debut Sleeping Giant has earned itself a pretty impeccable pedigree. An expansion of his 2013 short film of the same name, this coming-of-age drama on the summer shores of Thunder Bay, Ontario is a universal tale for viewers of all nationalities. With the time period left ambiguous—cell phones aren’t used and the one video camera seen in this cottage community still uses cassette tapes—it resonates with all ages too, calling back to memories of youthful malaise and rambunctious rebellion. And it pulls no punches as far as love, sex, drugs, or jealousy are concerned. “Fun” possesses many definitions, but even more consequences.
The story surrounds Adam Hudson (Jackson Martin), the only child of a family that’s frequented the retreat for many years. »
- Jared Mobarak
Today is Canadian Film Day, meaning we are going to binge-watch films that were made right here at home, by talented Canadian filmmakers. If you want to take part in the celebration of our nation's cinema, you should definitely seek out these five titles, that represent some of the best film-making our country has to offer.
Canadian film has only been getting better as more talents emerge within our nation. We've got the token Canadian directors that everybody knows and loves, like David Cronenberg, Atom Egoyan, and Guy Maddin, but then there's a whole new crop of filmmakers, from the already legendary Xavier Dolan, and Sarah Polley, and newcomers Andrew Cividino (Sleeping Giant)and Matt Johnson (The Dirties).
It's cinematic visions like the ones we'll see in the list below that make us proud to be Canadian, and while these films are unique in their own right, their quality is »
- Adriana Floridia
The River Run International Film Festival wrapped its 18th edition in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, with its narrative feature award going to Anna Rose Holmer’s The Fits, which was, in the words of the jury, “an audacious debut from a promising American talent.”
Best documentary feature went to Mike Plunkett’s Salero, about one of the last salt gatherers in Bolivia. The jury praised that film “for its astonishing visuals, narrative acuity and ability to showcase characters that go against the grain.”
- email@example.com (Wendy Mitchell)
If you happen to stop by a Tim Hortons in Thunder Bay, take a close look at the teenager behind the counter, he may be Nick Serino, one of the stars of the award-winning Canadian drama Sleeping Giant.
“There’s been a couple people who I’ll serve them coffee or something, and they’ll say, ‘I really enjoyed your movie,’ it’s pretty cool,” says the 18-year-old on the line from his home in Thunder Bay, Ontario.
Sleeping Giant, directed by first-time filmmaker Andrew Cividino, finds shy teen Adam (Jackson Martin) spending his summer vacation at his cottage on the shores of Lake Superior where he hangs out with local kids Riley (Reece Moffett) and Nate (Serino). Nate is the trio’s troublemaker; mouthy, energetic, funny and increasingly jealous of the time Riley is spending with Adam and his family.
Serino, who had never acted before landing the role of Nate, »
- Ingrid Randoja - Cineplex Magazine
This weekend New Yorkers will have a change to dive into a selection of the best recent Canadian cinema thanks to a showcase created by Tiff and Telefilm Canada appropriately called "See the North." On April 1, 2 and 3 2016, audiences at the IFC Center in New York City will be treated to this curated program of Canada’s finest creative talent, with directors in attendance for intros and Q+A’s.
Here is the full lineup:
"Closet Monster" – Ontario/Newfoundland
A film by Stephen Dunn
U.S. Distributor: Strand Releasing
Screening: 4/1 at 9:30pm with intro and Q + A from director Stephen Dunn
Canada Goose Award for Best Canadian Feature Film, 2015 Toronto International Film Festival
An East Coast teenager and aspiring special-effects makeup artist (Connor Jessup, Blackbird, 2012 Tiff Rising Star) struggles with both his sexuality and his fear of his macho father, in this imaginative twist on the coming-of-age tale from first-time feature director Stephen Dunn.
"The Demons" (Les démons) – Quebec
A film by Philippe Lesage
Sales Agent: FunFilm Distribution
Screening: 4/2 at 9:30pm with intro and Q + A with director Philippe Lesage
While Montreal is in the throes of a string of kidnappings targeting young boys, 10-year-old Felix is finishing his school year in the seemingly quiet suburb where he lives. A sensitive boy with a vivid imagination, Felix is afraid of everything. Little by little, his imaginary demons begin to mirror those of the increasingly disturbing world around him.
"Into the Fores" – British Columbia/Ontario
A film by Patricia Rozema
U.S. Distributor: A24 Films
Screening: 4/1 at 7:00pm with intro and Q + A from director Patricia Rozema
Two sisters (Ellen Page and Evan Rachel Wood) struggle to survive in a remote country house after a continent-wide power outage, in this gripping apocalyptic drama by one of Canada’s most celebrated filmmakers.
"My Internship in Canda" (Guibord s'en va-t-en guerre) – Quebec
A film by Philippe Falardeau
Sales Agent: Film Distribution
Screening: 4/2 at 7:00pm with intro and Q+A from director Philippe Falardeau
Guibord is an independent Member of Parliament representing a vast county in Northern Quebec who unwillingly finds himself in the awkward position of determining whether Canada will go to war. Accompanied by his wife, daughter and Souverain (Sovereign) Pascal, an idealistic intern from Haiti, Guibord travels across his district in order to consult his constituents and face his own conscience. This film is a sharp political satire in which politicians, citizens and lobbyists go head-to-head while tearing democracy to shreds.
"Our Loved Ones" (Les Êtres Chers) – Quebec
A film by Anne Émond
Sales Agent: Wide Management
Screening: 4/3 at 7:00pm with intro and Q+A from director Anne Émond
The story begins in 1978 in a small town on the Lower St.-Lawrence where the Leblanc family is rocked by the tragic death of Guy, found dead in the basement of the family home. For many years, the real cause of his death is hidden from certain members of the family, his son David among them. David starts his own family with his wife Marie and lovingly raises his children, Laurence and Frédéric, but deep down he still carries with him a kind of unhappiness. Our Loved Ones is a film of filial love, family secrets, redemption and inherited fate. Featuring 2015 Tiff Rising Star Karelle Tremblay.
"Sleeping Giant" (Le géant endormi) – Ontario
A film by Andrew Cividino
U.S. Distributor: FilmBuff
Screening: 4/3 at 9:30pm with intro and Q+A from director Andrew Cividino
City of Toronto Award for Best Canadian First Feature Film, 2015 Toronto International Film Festival
Spending his summer vacation on rugged Lake Superior, teenager Adam befriends Riley and Nate, smart-aleck cousins who pass their ample free time with pranks, vandalism and reckless cliff jumping. The revelation of a hurtful secret sets in motion a series of irreversible events that test the bonds of friendship and change the boys forever. »
- Carlos Aguilar
Following three adolescent boys vacationing by Lake Superior, the innocent Adam meets reckless cousins Nate and Riley, who challenge his sense of adventure, masculinity, and his perceptions of love and sexuality. The three young actors, Jackson Martin, Reece Moffett and Nick Serino (who won a Canadian Screen Award for Best Supporting Actor), give extremely natural performances, giving Sleeping Giant a docudrama feel.
It has picked up many accolades in its festival run, from early buzz at Cannes to the Best Canadian First Feature award at the Toronto International Film Festival. We caught the film last fall at Tiff, and can guarantee that it is a riveting look at adolescence, with complex characters.
Check out the trailer below and catch Sleeping Giant when it hits theatres on April 8th. »
- Adriana Floridia
The Irish-Canadian co-production took home nine prizes at Canada’s equivalent of the Oscars.
Accepting the award from veteran Christopher Plummer, 77 years his senior, the young actor said: “This is amazing. I can’t believe a kid like me won against a bunch of amazing talent. Christopher Plummer, you’re a legend.”
Paul Gross’ war drama »
This marks Maddin’s second win of the Toronto Film Critics Association’s top Canadian prize after he won for My Winnipeg in 2008.
“At its best, Canadian cinema is notorious for stunning the world with outlandish originality,” said Tfca president Brian D Johnson. “And that’s what Guy Maddin and Evan Johnson have done with The Forbidden Room.
“Their film is a tour de force. The stellar casting, the visual wit, the narrative gymnastics — this is a cinematic cirque that leaves us amazed that it could even exist.”
- firstname.lastname@example.org (Jeremy Kay)
11 items from 2016
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