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Interview with Karim B. Haroun, Director of ‘Mystic Mass’

The first character of the cinema was the mass: In La sortie des usines Lumière, credited as the first ever film, a crowd of factory workers leave a factory. While on repeated viewings you could begin to pick out the quirks and personalities of certain subjects, the real character was the group, the mass, the …

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Notes from FNC 2014 #1: Blurring the line between fact and fiction

The Festival du Nouveau Cinema has barely started and I already feel behind. Press screenings have been going on for over a week, and I missed many due to work. It doesn’t help that the first I show up to, a screening of Jauja, was cancelled due to a problem with the digital file. I …

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Le Cineclub Film Society presents The Hunchback of Notre Dame (1923)

Montreal’s Cineclub film society is holding a special screening of the classic silent film, The Hunchback of Notre Dame (1923) on October 3rd & 4th at 7:30pm. One of the most enduring adaptations of the popular novel by Victor Hugo, the film stars the incomparable Lon Chaney in the role of Quasimodo. The event is …

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‘Mommy’ is a thrilling, absolutely breathtaking piece of cinema

Montreal actor, writer and director Xavier Dolan’s fifth film Mommy is without a doubt one of the best of the year. Although thematically similar to his 2009 debut J’ai tué ma mère (I Killed My Mother), which won three separate awards at Cannes that year, Mommy follows the mother’s perspective of the relationship instead of that of the son’s. It is interesting, despite their many parallels, how very different the two films actually are. With Mommy, Dolan not only seems more assured of himself as a filmmaker but appears to have developed into quite an auteur as well. Creating a film so close in theme to his first can be seen as somewhat of a gamble, for many individuals might fear the film to be repetitious, a carbon copy, yet here is where Dolan demonstrates his disturbingly instinctual talent. Because he revisits the mother-son leitmotif in his works, he is strengthening both his storytelling as well as his understanding of the unique relationship. In the five years since his introductory film, he has grown from adolescent to adult, resulting in a shift from youthful intuition to a certain maturity on the subject. The result is downright brilliant.

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Montreal Film Pop line-up puts focus on American Independent Film

Pop Montreal has never been a festival to settle in it’s laurels and coast on it’s popularity. Having long fostered an identity as a boundary pushing musical festival focusing on young and emerging talents, over the past decade the festival has challenged it’s identity by expanding its scope. Added in 2004, Film Pop was a …

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The 2014 Montreal comic-con a success despite disappointments

If you weren’t at this year’s Montreal Comic-con, which was held from the 12th until the 14th of September at the Palais des Congres, then did you ever miss out. Although the Montreal convention isn’t normally known for its selection of guests, this year the con managed to not just pull in a few stars, …

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FNC 2013: ‘In Bloom’ is a haunting coming-of-age story not to be missed

In Bloom Directed by Nana Ekvtimishvili and Simon Gross Georgia/Germany/France, 2013 In Bloom is an honest and troubling tale of the passage into womanhood entrenched in poverty and persecution. Set in the capital city of Tbilisi, Georgia right after the fall of the Soviet Union, In Bloom follows the story of two 14-year old girls, …

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FNC 2013: Five Must See Films in the Focus Program

The 42nd Edition of Montreal’s Festival du Nouveau Cinema is just days away and the weight of an incredibly diverse and exciting program can intimidate even the most weathered cineaste. Combining the very best of big name and upcoming filmmakers, the festival has built its reputation on giving attention to groundbreaking and avant-garde cinema. Though sometimes …

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REEL MTL: Community Supported Film Studies Programs Launch at Le Cinéclub and The Miskatonic Institute for Horror Studies

During my years at McGill, I decided to stray from studying the sciences and take my love of cinema more seriously: I turned my mind towards Cultural Studies and spent my early twenties relishing in Canadian cinema, slasher films, the French New Wave, Godard’s wonderfully bizarre oeuvre, and the philosophy of film. It’s been three …

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‘The Killing of America’ Movie Review – Can Exploitation be Profound?

The Killing of America is an impassioned and emotional showcase of violence in America from the period of the early 1960s into the early 1980s. Resting on the thesis that the society quickly devolved into increasingly acts of senseless violence, the film utilizes rare and disturbing footage of both familiar and unfamiliar events. Rift with a somewhat confused ideology, the film nonetheless packs a punch and suggests where many others haven’t that access to guns are part of the problem, an issue that continues to be debated within American society to this day. Is this little more than a parade of greatest hits for snuff fans or does it reaches deeper, revealing darker truths and realities that we are unwilling or unable to face.

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Fantasia Film Festival 2013: Antisocial Tackles our Complex Relationship with Technology (Interview)

Antisocial is the feature length debut for directing and writing team Cody Calahan and Chad Archibald. In spite of their youthful appearances, they are not new to the Canadian film industry or Fantasia, having produced over ten short and feature length films – including Fantasia fan favourite Monster Brawl which screened at the fest in …

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Fantasia Fest 2013: Justine’s 5 Most Anticipated Films

Montreal’s Fantasia International Film Festival is back again with one kick-ass line-up. As always, Fantasia brings the best of genre cinema from all over the globe to some of the best audiences in the world. The Fantasia Film Festival is an experience like none other and the films are only part of the fun. It …

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I Am El Generico’s Father

The corner of the Internet occupied by Independent Wrestling exploded this week when it was reported that Montreal-based independent wrestler El Generico had signed with the WWE. What the “dirt sheets” (i.e. the wrestling news and rumour web-sites) are currently reporting is that, “El Generico has not signed a WWE contract, but there is a …

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Six Most Anticipated films at RIDM 2012

The Rencontres internationales du documentaires de Montreal (RIDM) was founded in 1998 and every year since has highlighted the very best documentaries from Canada and around the world. With a special focus on documentaries that really test boundary between fiction and reality, while presenting singular and personal perspectives that might change our view of the world around …

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FNC Capsule Reviews: Post Tenebras Lux, In Another Country & Tabu

Post Tenebras Lux (Carlos Reygadas, 2012) The new film from Mexican filmmaker, Carlos Reygadas, Post Tenebras Lux- a latin phrase meaning Light After Darkness, is an experimental family drama, which adopts a narrative flow that does moves between different levels of consciousness, fragmented chronologies and alternating points of view. Perhaps a bit too dense to …

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‘Antiviral’ Movie Review – is ahead of its time

Antiviral Written by Brandon Cronenberg Directed by Brandon Cronenberg Canada, 2012 Whether it is on the level of style, theme or pedigree, Brandon Cronenberg’s new film Antiviral is sure to divide critical and popular reception. Audiences will almost universally fit into two categories: those who walk away inspired and those who will walk away alienated, …

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The Biggest Cult Film Of All Time Celebrates its 35th anniversary In Montreal

Halloween is here again and for thousands of Montrealers this means another chance to experience “THE ROCKY HORROR PICTURE SHOW Halloween Ball”. This year the event is back at the gorgeous Rialto Theatre, 5723 Parc ave. (Parc or Place des arts metro, bus 80). To accommodate the large numbers of participants, there will be no …

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If You Live In Montreal, You Should Check Out These Film Events

The Grindhouse Wednesdays The Grindhouse Wednesdays series is an event that takes place on the first Wednesday of every month and features a different band performing live before screening a grindhouse classic. Their Mission: To raise money for HIV/AIDS Awareness while having fun, drinking cheap booze, listening to amazing music, and watching exploitation cinema (slasher, …

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Cinema l Amour celebrates 40 years with new film series ‘Grindhouse Wednesdays’

Before Cinéma l’Amour started showing hardcore porn, 40 years ago, it opened as Le Pussycat and showed exploitation films. It was a time when Montreal’s movie palaces were struggling to stay in business due to the popularity of television and the emergence of conglomerate-owned multiplex chains. To stay afloat, dozens of theatres started showing grindhouse …

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