It’s safe to say that our featured director for this week, Mr. Bruce McDonald, was responsible in large part for turning Toronto into a film lab in the early nineties. Winning Best Canadian Feature at TIFF for his first film, Road Kill, Bruce went on to accept the prize promising he would spend it all on “a big chunk of hash.”
Since then, McDonald has seen more lows than highs. Hard Core Logo remains a cult hit and is acknowledged as one of Canada’s greatest films but his early road trilogy made little at the box office. His ten million dollar feature – Picture Claire, starring Juliette Lewis and Mickey Rourke, went unreleased, and in order to purchase screen rights to The Tracey Fragments he had to mail novelist Maureen Medved his cowboy boots as down payment.
Today we examine three very different films from the director, all three of which feature novels as source material. The first is last year’s The Tracey Fragments, possibly MacDonald’s most experimental film. Second is his new film Pontypool, an avant-garde genre movie that’s both thought-provoking and thoroughly creepy. Finally, we could not go without touching on the cult sensation Hard Core Logo.