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    ‘Still’ is a grim but untidy crime drama

    Still Written and Directed by Simon Blake UK, 2014 The subject of adolescent criminality is a hot button issue in Britain, playing on the fears generated by rampant urbanization and the generation gap. Cinema has addressed these fears in different ways; Edgar Wright and Simon Pegg riffed on the idea with Hot Fuzz and their […] More

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    ‘Kurt Cobain: Montage of Heck’ avoids a literary reading of Cobain’s life

    It was 2004 and I was fifteen years old when I read Charles R. Cross’ Heavier than Heaven. I remember finishing the last chapters, sprawled on the floor of my family’s cottage as I cried so hard I started to dry heave. At the time I was unaware of the controversy that surrounded the adaptation, both in how Cross took liberties in certain facts (some information was later disproved, or at least not substantiated) and the decision he made to create what was ultimately a fictional take on Kurt’s final days up until the point he killed himself. Like many teenager before and since, Kurt Cobain represented a romantic and ultimately tragic figure to look up to – for better or for worse. More

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    Rotterdam 2015: ‘The Man in the Wall’ is an excellently paced psychological drama

    Presented in the Bright Future Premieres programme section of IFFR 2015 as one of the nominees for the FIPRESCI prize of the festival, The Man in the Wall is a tense, excellently paced psychological drama with fleshed out characters that seem pulled on-screen directly from life itself. Although purportedly not (auto)biographical, the story nonetheless feels very personal. More

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    RVCQ 2015: ‘Les Loups’ is the first great Quebec film of 2015

    The dark unforgiving waters of the Atlantic Ocean and the mouth of the St. Lawrence river provide the backdrop to Les Loups, a beautifully crafted melodrama. Set in a small island Quebec town during the spring thaw, a stranger arrives during the height of the controversial seal hunts. Vibrant and mysterious, many suspect that Elie, the young woman from Montreal, is not who she says and is likely a reporter or an activist bent on portraying the townsfolk in a bad light. More

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    RVCQ 2015: ‘Miraculum’ feels like a failed pilot

    Miraculum Written by Gabriel Sabourin Directed by Daniel Grou Canada, 2014 Daniel Grou (affectionately known as Podz by the Quebec public) got his start in television, directing a number of very successful shows for Radio-Canada, the national channel. In 2010 he made his cinematic debut with two films and has since been working exclusively for […] More

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    ‘Backstreet Boys: Show em’ What You’re Made of’ is dark portrait of music industry

    Backstreet Boys: Show em’ What You’re Made of

    Directed by Stephen Kijak

    USA, 2015

    At the height of their face The Backstreet Boys represented with their harmonious voices and cherub good looks a newfound idealism in the American landscape. Not without talent, their selling point as much their image as their sound: they were chosen to be branded. Offering context to the tumultuous early years and how their experienced shaped their identity and worth over the years, the new documentary Backstreet Boys: Show em’ What You’re Made of documents the production of a new album from the former boy group. More

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    136 Years of Visual Effects in 3 Minutes (video)

    Editor Jim Casey has parsed through the history of cinematic visual effects to create a short and sensory overloading video of it’s history. Beginning with photographer Eadweard Muybridge’s pre-cinamatic photography of a horse galloping up to the present day, the video is not only valuable as a fascinating document of evolving techniques but a representation […] More

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    Sleeping Beauty and the Impact of Eyvind Earle

    Among the most sumptuous of Walt Disney’s films, Sleeping Beauty’s enduring legacy is largely due to its incredible art design and complete creative vision. In production for nearly 10 years, the film was very costly and represented the end of an era for Disney hand-drawn animation. Though collaboration is key in most Disney productions, Sleeping Beauty […] More

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    FNC 2013: ‘Our Sunhi’ is a charming comedy of errors

    Our Sunhi, the newest film from Hong Sang-Soo, is enamoured with interconnected romances and the mysteries of affection. A charming and patient comedy, the film excels at presenting the trials and tribulations of desire, offering a rewarding and funny take on the mysteries of love. Though there is nothing exceptional about the title character, Sunhi, she captures the elusive affections of three friends. More

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    FNC 2013: ‘Stray Dogs’ is one of the most unique films of the year

    Tsai Ming-Liang has built a reputation for himself as one of the foremost artists of contemporary cinema. His work is often lauded for its challenging ideas, careful pacing, and incredible compositional sense. His newest film Stray Dogs (rumoured to be his last) is about an alcoholic father and his two children struggling to survive in Taipei. Blending stark realism with elements of fantasy and absurdity, there is little doubt that this is one of the most unique films of the year, offering a singular vision of the world. More

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    FNC 2013: ‘Bluebird’ is a stunning debut about loss and hope

    Borne out of the current economic crisis, Bluebird is set in an obscure and isolated logging town in Maine. Coated in snow that seems to be barely ever cleared, there is a lingering fear that the mill will close and the town will fade even deeper into the past. Lost in the rituals of daily life, it is only through accidental tragedy that a true sense of malaise and hopelessness comes rising from below the surface. More

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