made. Yes it is a mockumentary, yes it is follows around a rock band
(rockumentary) but for every other reason this really should not be
compared to Spinal Tap. It really isn't a comedy, although it has some great moments in it.
It's also not about a band "struggling with fame" which is what
EVERY OTHER rock movie is about (Almost Famous, That Thing
You Do, Spinal Tap, The Doors, you name it). Just four guys
holding on to a dream that should have faded years ago, all the
while trying not to kill each other. I always knew Hugh Dillon was really the lead singer for the
Headstones, so I realized it wasn't really a documentary but
thought Hard Core Logo the band might still have existed and this
was a tribute. Not the case, but that takes nothing away from the
movie. They say not to watch this movie if you're in a band because it'll
make you never want to play. At the same time, I think anyone who
has been in a band will appreciate it that much more picturing how
their little arguments would be amplified to 10 years later. It's an
overall great gut check to picture just ow much you love playing
music, especially if noone wants to listen.
but then again I don't know who would want to watch this twice... at
least not back to back. The most interesting thing about this film is the way it is just a
general criticism on America's obsession with action (car crashes
in movies) and sex. Cronenberg just takes the next logical step in
combining the two, somewhat a la George in Seinfeld with food
and sex. Some of it definitely drags, especially the love scene between
Spader and Koteas that for some reason feels too long before it
ever starts. The re-inactment of celebrity car crashes that they go see is
definitely cool though, and somehow realistic of a potential
modern fetish. Still, I like Crony's old stuff much better.
You really have to watch this whole movie before you form an opinion on it, and if you miss the last shocking 30 seconds then you'll probably have a low opinion of this movie. This one really need to be re-released on DVD (or at least video besides at the National Archives!) so it can get an audience.
how Canada was and will always be renowned for Mounties,
snow, and wildlife. The scandalous "nude scene" where Nell Shipman is bathing
under a waterfall is what gave this film an audience, but definitely
not why it's still around today. It's actually a decent story where the
spirit of a dead Eskimo is incarnated into a husky, but that angle
doesn't really have any significance until the end of the film when
it's revisited. Most surprisingly, I found, was how progressive of a role Nell had
way back in 1919. She drives the plot and essentially rescues
herself from a lot of the danger, something Hollywood is still
reluctant to do. It wasn't actually the first feature film made in Canada
("Evangeline" was in 1913), but it's the earliest one left that has
been preserved. If for no other reason, you gotta check it our just
The film is relatively episodic with no flowing narrative, other than the girls sexual obsession with a well established and married man. Their personal liberation is some-what predictable and anticlimactic, but none the less appropriate for the style of the film. Also contains a fair bit of nudity, always a bonus!
Middle-aged Abel goes to France from Quebec to explore what was at one time considered the "homeland" only find that nobody understands his "strange accent," has little opinion of Quebec and isn't at all sympathetic to their then plight to become a sovereign nation. It deals with the issue of abandonment from the country in both metaphors and literal expressions throughout the narrative, something many films from Quebec have always done on an abstract level.
Set presumably in 1940s rural Quebec, the story explores the developing consciousness of young Benoit as he learns to deal with both sexuality and death.
The look of the film is astonishing, especially seeing as a high proportion of criticism towards Canadian cinema by the general public surrounds aesthetics. Beyond this, the unassuming Benoit is a seductive protagonist for the audience, looking at his corrupting community with fresh an innocent eyes.
I recommend reading Jim Leach's critical essay on the film in Canada's Best Features for anyone looking to place the film into a historical context while also dissecting the form of the film. Definitely check this one out.
Really gritty movie that I'm glad has received an audience outside of just Canada. The kid's performance is mesmerizing and I enjoyed how a sympathetic angle was available, but not pushed. The ending to me was sad, despite how terrible the boy was, and is one of the images that sticks in my mind the most.
Anyone who feels that the younger generation is going to ruin the future, don't watch this film!! Like the "Thirteen," or "Kids," it's disturbing to watch people so young result to such drastic measures in life to feel accepted.
The addition of a the super-natural doesn't help anything, especially in the climax of a reality based drama. But like all Canadian films, just being made is an accomplishment in its own right.
First of all, it is a rare feature film unapologetically set in Saskatchewan that is above all entertaining. More importantly though, it is a good comment on Canadian culture being influenced by American culture in a fatal way.
I found Keir Dullea's character, Rick, charming as the wanna be sheriff of a small Saskatchewan town in the 70s, equipped with a holster, cowboy hat and chaps, and a sheriffs star on the side of his bright red car. More importantly, the town never mocked him, and when they did he would always stood up for himself and beat the crap out of people making fun of him .
In fact, as this dreamer he becomes the only interesting thing in the town which has you rooting for him throughout the film. If you're not reading between the lines of what this film is about though, it's still enjoyable to watch. And in its defence, it was made before the Tax Shelter era, so you can't write it off as a product of those days. It actually took heart to make this film, and it shows on screen.
Stylistically, it lends itself to the ever Canadian style of documentary, and with good reason. It was conceived within the French studio of the NFB, but later converted to a feature fiction. At the exact same time, the English NFB came out with "Nobody Waved Goodbye" which was ironically conceived the same way, converted the same way, and deals with many parallel issues but through the eyes of a discontent teen in the Toronto area.
It might be hard to find, but worth the effort!