I Declare War is a no-holds-barred coming-of-age drama that is more than just dipped in the realm of fantasy. It exists, almost wholly, through the eyes and in the minds of several feral youngsters as they compete in a game of war in the woods (shot in Orange Valley, Scarborough over the course of 20 days). Yes, this is “Canadian” soil but directors Jason Lapeyre and Robert Wilson aren’t – ‘scuse the stereotype – making any apologies. (continue reading…)
In my 4 years in Kingston, the passage from February to March has been eased by the proceedings of the annual Kingston Canadian Film Festival (KCFF). It was launched in 2001 by an acquaintance and professor of mine, Alex Jansen, who held a three-day screening at the local repertory theatre called The Screening Room. Now twelve years later, KCFF prospers as a 4-day festival where filmmakers visit nationally to present their pieces to eager moviegoers, and even interact with the latter at engaging workshops and master classes. (continue reading…)
My thoughts on Glen Matthews’s Room Service:
“Writer-director Glen Matthews is a shameless disarmer, Lynchian in spirit. His short Room Service reveals, literally, the illusion of cinema. It’s a worthy short that cleverly enables a Mulholland Drive-like revelation.” (continue reading…)
FATAL PICTURES is proud to announce “FAMILIAR”, a new Horror short starring Robert Nolan, Astrida Auza & Cathryn Hostick as the seemingly idyllic yet ultimately doomed Dodd Family.
Through a series of tragic events a middle aged man grows to suspect the negative impulses plaguing his mind may not be his own… (continue reading…)
I Declare War (dir. Jason Lapeyre, Robert Wilson, 90m) – ***
My Awkward Sexual Adventure (dir. Sean Garrity, 103m) – ***
The Toronto International Film Festival is bursting at the seams with big movies: Argo, Cloud Atlas, The Master, and many other commercial favorites. But hold on: TIFF’s understated Vanguard and Contemporary World Cinema programs are offering two indie delights: Jason Lapeyre and Robert Wilson’s I Declare War and Sean Garrity’s My Awkward Sexual Adventure. These are two off-the-wall larks that point to serious talent in the Canadian film industry and filmmakers who demonstrate a confidence to combine madcap ideas with relatable themes. (continue reading…)
Jason Lapeyre is a Canadian filmmaker with blood on his hands…in a good way. A romantic of crime films and novels, Lapeyre, like Martin Scorsese and Sidney Lumet, depicts his lurid film worlds with equal affection and scorn for the brutality and corruption they breed.
A York University-graduate, Lapeyre hurdled headlong into the film industry by helping out on sets and directing music videos for several years. He even made a funny short film that parodies the opening text crawl credits of “Star Wars”. His low-budget feature debut “Cold Blooded” is also funny, I suppose, but the humour springs from the audience’s discomfort. This is the Hitchcock rule: laughter is the reflex of our unconscious fears and desires. (continue reading…)
Some of the best horror films aren’t, in fact, horror films. Those that veer into the dramatic and focus on the personalities of the characters and their daily struggles tend to resonate the most. The terror that unfolds, therefore, is unleashed from a natural state of fear and discontent – emotions we can easily tap into. This purpose is what permeates from the works of the talented Richard Powell, a Canadian filmmaker who demonstrates in his new short film “Familiar” that he is perhaps perversely fascinated by a human’s body and mind. (continue reading…)
Rating: 18a – Coarse Language, Nudity, Sexual Content
Run Time: 116 minutes
Here’s a rare film that actually means something. Truly. It’s called Take This Waltz and it is directed by Sarah Polley, a very underrated Canadian actress (see: Splice, Dawn of the Dead) whose directorial debut was the understated masterpiece Away From Her. Take This Waltz is a beautiful companion piece as another intimate portrait of a woman’s life crisis. In Away From Her it was Alzheimer’s and here it is the temptation of infidelity. (continue reading…)
Rating: 14A – Coarse Language, Sexual Content, Graphic Violence
Run Time: 108 minutes
His name is Eric Packer and he is, ostensibly, on a quest for a haircut. This objective is smoke-and-mirrors, we quickly learn, and is the veneer of a twisted examination on Packer’s body and mind in a city of mindless revolt. Packer wants ultimate satisfaction, either physical or intellectual suit his fancy. He is a multi-billionaire whose riches have buried him in a desensitized life of debauchery and fruitless, lame-brained excursions. His limo might as well be a coffin. (continue reading…)
3.5 Stars out of 4
The Corridor is an atypical horror movie…in fact, I’m not even sure if it is a horror film. It’s more of a drama that happens to have some horror elements.
It tells an ostensibly harmless tale about a group of buddies who amicably lodge in a isolated cabin in the Nova Scotia woods. But the film doesn’t succumb to the rote slasher flick plot device when the characters are inevitably eliminated by some diabolical villain. (continue reading…)