Author Archives: Matt

angryinuk_07 January 15

Canada’s Top Ten Film Festival: Angry Inuk

An Inuit community in Canada’s northern territories faces an interesting challenge. How can a culture, that prides itself on a patient and understated expression of anger, make themselves heard when their opponents are famous for a more aggressive approach? Canadian seal hunting has gotten a lot of media attention since the late 1970s thanks to […]

the_academy_of_muses December 11

The Academy of Muses

Trying to review The Academy of Muses feels a lot like faking my way through an essay question on an exam for which I’ve barely studied. A professor of philology, which apparently is a thing, teaches an advanced course in Barcelona for which we get a front row seat. Professor Pinto’s class seems to offer […]

right now, wrong then December 10

Right Now, Wrong Then

Right Now, Wrong Then is the kind of movie that bores you to tears and then makes you feel like a dummy for it. I hate to write off moves as “boring” or “slow”. I pride myself on my sophisticated tastes and patience with deliberating pacing. The latest feature from Hong Sang-Soo is the kind […]

apocalypse-child November 09

Reel Asian 2016: Apocalypse Child

Apocalypse Child is a wonderful film. Ford (Sid Lucero), like his beachside town of Baler, Philippines, loves to surf. The surfing craze in Baler apparently started after the crew filming part of Apocalypse Now left a surf board behind. Although Ford embraces his local pastime to the point where he wins almost every surfing competition […]

the-scent-of-mandarin October 29

Cinéfranco 2016: The Scent of Mandarin (L’Odeur de la Mandarine)

As the first World War rages on, a young widow named Angèle (Georgia Scalliet) takes a job as a homecare nurse for a former cavalry officer Charles (Olivier Gourmet) who has lost a leg in the war. Even though she is initially warned that her new patient is prone to some very bad moods, Angèle’s […]

the-sun-at-midnight October 22

ImagineNATIVE 2016: The Sun at Midnight

My first impression of The Sun at Midnight was a lot like Lia’s (Devery Jacobs) initial reaction to Ft. McPherson. The film opens on a strained conversation between father and sulking daughter about “Why do I have to go stay with Grandma anyway?” As first scenes go, this one is a lot like how Lia […]

7-minutes October 18

ImagineNATIVE 2016: 7 Minutes

Marie’s walk home from her campus library is almost exactly 7 minutes. After being aggressively harassed one night, she can no longer help noticing just how vulnerable a young Native woman in Saskatoon can be. Her experience of reporting the incident, to the seemingly uninterested local police, only makes her feel less safe. 7 Minutes, […]

Angry_Inuk_2 October 17

ImagineNATIVE 2016: Angry Inuk

An Inuit community in Canada’s northern territories faces an interesting challenge. How can a culture, that prides itself on a patient and understated expression of anger, make themselves heard when their opponents are famous for a more aggressive approach? Canadian seal hunting has gotten a lot of media attention since the late 1970s thanks to […]

lecielflamand_01 September 10

TIFF 2016: Le Ciel Flamand

When Eline (Esra Vandenbussche) grows up, she wants to be just like her mother. After all, helping people who need hugs can sound like a pretty good job when you just turned six. What Sylvie (Sara Vertongen) isn’t telling her daughter is that she runs a brothel and is doing all she can to shield […]

The Debt July 04

The Debt

When I was tasked with reviewing film about an international financial deal set in Peru, I was worried that I might not be the man for the job. I’ll admit, movies about big business, banks, and financial stuff often go right over my head. Worse still, and I’m not proud of this, I know very […]

GirlsLost June 03

Inside Out 2016: Girls Lost

After drinking from a mysterious (and apparently magical) plant, three bullied adolescent girls are transformed into boys. First let me address my-and possibly your-initial concern. Writer-director Alexandra-Therese Keining thankfully has no interest in broad comedy and doesn’t waste even a moment of precious screen time with it. No dick jokes or double entendres here. Keining […]

The Slippers May 30

Inside Out 2016: The Slippers

I love this movie! I love this movie! I love this movie! How many words is that? Damn. Okay, I’ll elaborate. For anyone who really loves movies- American movies in particular- it’s easy to be almost immediately won over by this documentary about Hollywood nostalgia. Specifically, the legacy of Victor Fleming’s Wizard of Oz and- […]

The Next O Ninho May 27

Inside Out 2016: The Nest (O Ninho)

Bruno (Nicolas Vargas), still wearing his military uniform when checking in at a Porto Alegre inn, comes across as a typically polite soldier at first. We soon see that the seemingly disciplined and obedient young man is preoccupied though; and that his mission in this city in the south of Brazil is personal. While searching […]

The Rainbow Kid May 06

The Rainbow Kid

The less you know going into Kire Paputts’ first feature, the better. I’m tempted to leave it at that as The Rainbow Kid isn’t going to be for everyone. However, I owe it to anyone reading this to at least tell you enough to decide whether or not you’d like to submit yourself to this […]

Aim_for_the_Roses_1 May 05

Hot Docs 2016: Aim for the Roses

“It’s going to be a long 102 minutes”. This was my first impression of Aim for the Roses, which makes its world premiere at the Hot Docs Film Festival. John Bolton’s documentary opens on a reenactment of Ken Carter (played by actor Andrew McNee with a yellow jumpsuit and terrible 70s beard) proclaiming his destiny […]

Angry Inuk May 02

Hot Docs 2016: Angry Inuk

An Inuit community in Canada’s northern territories faces an interesting challenge. How can a culture, that prides itself on a patient and understated expression of anger, make themselves heard when their opponents are famous for a more aggressive approach? Canadian seal hunting has gotten a lot of media attention since the late 1970s thanks to […]

Gun Runners May 01

Hot Docs 2016: Gun Runners

I was a little uncomfortable when I discovered that this documentary about Kenyan warriors had a pun in its title. With armed cattle rustling getting out of hand, the Kenyan government introduced a disarmament program in 2004 to end the violence. Warriors like Julius Arile and Robert Matanda were encouraged to turn over their guns […]