Friday, 29 June 2012

Juan of the Dead & The Pact: Toronto After Dark Summer Screening Day 1



It was so much fun to have a slice of Toronto After Dark goodness this week, instead of having to wait all the way until October! Don't worry - the festival still will be in October (October 18 - 26, 2012 to be exact) which makes this festival goer happy as I've always favoured the fall and rev-up to Halloween with scary film goodness. But this Wednesday we had a taste of scares, blood and glory with the double bill of Cuban zombie film Juan of the Dead / Juan de los Muertos and supernatural horror of The Pact with Toronto After Dark Summer Screening Day 1 all at The Bloor Cinema. I'm still not quite used to the Bloor for festivals screenings yet, although one great edition they have for festival goers is that they can project on the big screen people on the stage (see pictures below), which is a great thing given that the balcony has seemed to become the seating area of choice. It also works nicely for video introductions, which the audience got treated to with The Pact writer/director Nicholas McCarthy who sent us a message expressing the thrill of having his film playing as a double bill. Pretty freaking awesome. We also started the night off with a great short animated film called The Ward that was full of creepy ideas and imagery following a man trying to escape a hospital ward. It may be the first short animated film that totally felt like an action version of a Twilight Zone episode, which made it totally awesome.

Speaking of films, let's get to them! Rather watch than read? Check out my Vlog!


Toronto After Dark Film Festival Founder and Director Adam Lopez introduces the Summer Screening at the Bloor



Juan of the Dead / Juan de los Muertos
Writer/Dir: Alejandro Brugués (Personal Belongings)
Cast: Alexis Díaz de Villegas, Jorge Molina, Andrea Duro, Andros Perugorría, Jazz Vilá, Eliecer Ramírez, Blanca Rosa Blanco
Cuba/Spain

What a way to charge into the double bill with the Cuban zombie film Juan of the Dead / Juan de los Muertos, full of zombie goodness and a heck of a lot of humour. The film stars Alexis Díaz de Villegas as Juan, our relaxed and very capable protagonist whom is oddly unnerved by the craziness of people attacking and eating each other. Why let it stop him living life? Instead, it's an opportunity to let him hone in on his survivor skills. He's not alone either as we have the faithful Lazaro (Jorge Molina) and his son California (Andros Perugorría) as well as outgoing China (Jazz Vilá) rounding out the mix of the band of misfits in this crazy journey. Zombie films are easily know for blood, brains and beheading and Juan of the Dead / Juan de los Muertos stays true to even more zombie roots as it throws in a healthy dose of social commentary to jazz up the setting and character motivations, and even combines them by showcasing their resilience to pretty much everything and anything you can throw at them. There is a fountain of creativity at work here, not only with an awesome new spin on the zombie film but with all of the great humour that had the crowd laughing and cheering along with the kills, the little victories and the ingenuity at every turn. Juan of the Dead / Juan de los Muertos was an undead treat and a great addition to the zombie genre.



The Pact (2012)
Writer/Dir: Nicholas McCarthy - feature film directorial debut
Cast: Caity Lotz, Casper Van Dien, Agnes Bruckner, Mark Steger, Haley Hudson, Kathleen Rose Perkins, Sam Ball
USA

I was really excited to see The Pact, with it's haunted house vibe and generally creepy feel I was totally stoked even before the film but it just got better as the story actually follows a pair of sisters with a tumultuous pass that starts to stir again after the passing of their mother. I really loved as Caity Lotz as Annie, she's a great tough girl that stares into the face of challenges and doesn't take any crap, but also is easily relatable when things start to get freaky. I loved the sense of mystery in the film and was very impressed by the storytelling that how things unravelled throughout and it even had me guessing which is very impressive given that I watch a heck of a lot of supernatural and horror films. There are lots of scary moments and ideas in the film and it reads just as well as a thriller as it does as supernatural horror. The characters are compelling and nicely stray off the beaten track not only with the aforementioned Annie, but also in the haunting Stevie played by Haley Hudson who adds and elemental edge to the film; plus Casper Van Dien does a great job in the local law enforcement role. The Pact was fabulous, it really kept me off balance in a good, engaging way and had some great stares but behind it all was a fantastic mystery that unfolded at the perfect pace. I can't wait to see it again.

The Toronto After Dark Film Festival Summer Screenings return in just under 2 weeks on July 11, 2012 with Detention and V/H/S. See more about the screenings here, see more information at the Toronto After Dark Film Festival website or Buy Tickets to the Summer Screenings Here.


In between screenings I had the rare chance of capturing the new Bloor sign with a beautiful dark blue sky behind it. Just beautiful!

Film Fan Fridays for Friday June 29, 2012

Hello Film Fans and Fanatics!

Welcome to Film Fan Fridays for Friday June 29, 2012! Leading into this holiday weekend we have a whopping 8 films to choose from, plus the summer classic of Jaws playing at Lightbox and continuing the summer superhero rush with The Amazing Spider-Man out early next week.

In limited release this week we start with 2 documentaries to enjoy including Flamenco, Flamenco from director Carlos Saura who also brought us the dance film Fados and our second documentary is Town of Runners centred on a group of runners from Ethiopia. Our third limited release of the week is Dark Horse from director Todd Solondz (Life During Wartime) following love of late bloomers. Plus, if you are a fan of shark films and loved to be scared check out Jaws playing at Lightbox all week.

In wide release this week we have five films chose from and what better way to start Canada Day weekend thank with a Canadian film? The Canadian film of the week is most definitely Sarah Polley's Take This Waltz starring Michelle Williams, Seth Rogen and Luke Kirby, and I think it looks very interesting. We also have Magic Mike from Steven Soderbergh starring Channing Tatum as a stripper, drama People Like Us starring Chris Pine and Elizabeth Banks, comedy Ted starring Mark Whalberg and a teddy bear (who else is confused???) and Tyler Perry's latest with Madea's Witness Protection.

And after your weekend fun has come to a close, next week we have the mid-week release of The Amazing Spider-Man (in 3D) on Tuesday July 3, 2012. Superhero film bookending the North American holiday weekends. That's going to be a big pick for folks this week I'm sure.

Have a great weekend!

Shannon

Festival Watch

Italian Contemporary Film Festival
Continues until July 1, 2012 at various locations in Toronto, Ontario, Canada

ReelHeART International Film Festival
The Filmmakers Film Festival
June 27 - 30, 2012 at The Projection Booth in Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Toronto Korean Film Festival
Continues until July 1, 2012 at Innis Town Hall in Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Friday June 29, 2012 Releases

Dark Horse
Writer/Dir: Todd Solondz (Happiness, Life During Wartime)
Cast: Justin Bartha, Selma Blair, Mia Farrow, Jordan Gelber, Christopher Walken
USA
Limited Release
Film Facebook Page, IMDb Page, Trailer

Flamenco, Flamenco
writer/Dir: Carlos Saura (Salomé, Goya en Burdeos, Fados)
Documentary
Spain
Limited Release
Official Film Site, IMDb Page, Trailer

Magic Mike
Dir: Steven Soderbergh (Oceans 11, The Informant!, Che, Haywire)
Cast: Channing Tatum, Alex Pettyfer, Matthew McConaughey, Matthew Bomer, Joe Manganiello, Riley Keough, Cody Horn, Olivia Munn
USA
Official Film Site, IMDb Page, Trailer

People Like Us (2012)
Dir: Alex Kurtzman - feature film directorial debut
Cast: Chris Pine, Elizabeth Banks, Olivia Wilde, Michael Hall D’Addario, Philip Baker Hall, Mark Duplass, Michelle Pfeiffer
USA
Official Film Site, IMDb Page, Trailer

Take This Waltz
Writer/Dir: Sarah Polley (Away From Her)
Cast: Michelle Williams, Seth Rogen, Luke Kirby, Sarah Silverman
Canada/Spain/Japan
Film Facebook Page, IMDb Page, Trailer

Ted
Dir: Seth MacFarlane - feature film directorial debut
Cast: Mark Wahlberg, Mila Kunis, Joel McHale, Giovanni Ribisi, Seth MacFarlane
USA
Official Film Site, IMDb Page, Trailer

Town of Runners
Dir: Jerry Rothwell (Donor Unknown, Heavy Load)
Documentary
Ethiopia/UK
Limited Release
Official Film Site, IMDb Page, Trailer

Tyler Perry's Madea's Witness Protection
Writer/Dir: Tyler Perry (Madea's Big Happy Family, For Colored Girls, Why Did I Get Married?)
Cast: Tyler Perry, Eugene Levy, Denise Richards, Romeo Miller, Tom Arnold, Doris Roberts, John Amos, Marla Gibbs
USA
Film Facebook Page, IMDb Page, Trailer

Tuesday July 3, 2012 Releases

The Amazing Spider-Man
Dir: Marc Webb (500 Days of Summer)
Cast: Andrew Garfield, Emma Stone, Rhys Ifans, Denis Leary, Campbell Scott, Irrfan Khan
USA
Official Film Site, IMDb Page, Trailer

**please note this list of releases reflects first run film released in Toronto, Ontario, Canada as of June 29, 2012**

Thursday, 28 June 2012

Toronto After Dark Summer Screenng 2012: Juan of the Dead and The Pact



Taking a look at the first night of the Toronto After Dark Summer Screening with Cuban zombie films Juan of the Dead and haunted house flick The Pact.
  • I mention the Canadian zombie-comedy film Fido
  • I mention the book Down a Dark Hall, in particular the font that the title is in on the book cover.
  • I mention Starship Troopers, has it really been 15 years since then? Really?
  • I share that my You Tube Channel went like just a few weeks ago, feel free to check out more vlogs there.
  • If you are into the supernatural and paranormal, feel free to check out Hexed: Sisterhood of the Supernatural a paranormal TV podcast I co-host with my sister Suzie and we chat all about fiction and non-fiction paranormal shows.
See more about the screenings here, see more information at the Toronto After Dark Film Festival website or Buy Tickets to the Summer Screenings Here.

Wednesday, 27 June 2012

Live and Let Die ~ Bondathon Film 8



Time to check in on our eight film of the Bondathon: Live or Let Die

Mentioned in this vlog:
Up Next for the Bondathon: The Man with the Golden Gun

Live or Let Die Images:


Images of the Tarot Decks show in my video:

Tuesday, 26 June 2012

DVD Releases June 26, 2012

Time to take a look at a selection of DVD releases for Tuesday June 26, 2012!



Images: Mirror Mirror & The Artist (Courtesy of Alliance Films); Gone Little Mosque on the Prairie (Courtesy of eOne Films)

  • Father's Day this amazing and button pushing film from Astron-6 and Troma is out on a 4 Disc Set (BluRay, 2xDVD and CD) and it's guaranteed to freak you out. I saw it at the Toronto After Dark Film Festival in 2011 and I named it the best cult film of the festival with the icky-ist imagery and it certainly had one of the best Q&A's (see here). It's not for the faint of heart but for true cult fans. See my original vlog review of Father's Day here.
  • Mirror Mirror Tarsem Singh's turn on the Snow White tale with Lily Collins as Snow White and Julia Roberts as the evil queen. Beautifully styled and very fantasy oriented, this one is a film I really wanted to check out.
  • The Artist Winner of 5 Oscars this year The Artist won the hearts of many with it's old school silent film charm. Stars Jean Dujardin, Berenice Bejo and John Goodman.
  • 21 Jump Street reboot of the 80's TV show about cops going over in high school, this revisioning with Channing Tatum and Jonah Hill looks like it takes the comedy and runs with it and is certainly on my to see list.
  • Gone I was quite impressed with this thriller starring Amanda Seyfried as a survivor who is not taken that seriously, it's very interesting to see the different take and response her character gets from people and should be on any to see list for folks interested in gender dynamics.
  • Wrath of the Titans Sequel to the 2010 Clash of the Titans reboot which yet again stars Sam Worthington as the hero Perseus. Also out this week is a Titans 2-Pack with both Wrath of the Titans and Clash of the Titans on BluRay (Amazon.ca only).
  • Oranges & Sunshine stars Emily Watson as a social worker that takes on the task of reunited estranged families not only with the children separated from their families but also lead to believe they parents are no longer alive. Based on a true story, this one even the trailer can bring me to tears.
  • Once Upon a Time in Anatolia co-winner for the 2011 Cannes Grand Prix this Turkish film has take the festival circuit by storm as well as having quite an impressive limited release run.
  • TV on DVD this week including the Canadian drama Little Mosque on the Prairie: Season 5 Trailblazing (Amazon.ca only) and Damages The Complete Fourth Season which stars Glenn Close, Rose Byrne, John Goodman and Dylan Baker.
  • Christopher Nolan Director's Collection (BluRay) impressive collection of Nolan's work including Memento, Insomnia, Inception, Batman Begins & The Dark Knight; and just in time for folks looking to rev up their Nolan watching pre-The Dark Knight Rises this July.
  • A Thousand Words comedy starring Eddie Murphy as a man who literally is on a countdown to only saying a maximum of 1,000 more words.
  • Plus: Book to Film Club November reading selection Safe Haven by Nicholas Sparks is being released in paperback. See more about the 2012 Movie Moxie Book Club here and sign up for updates here.

Titles on Amazon.ca(Canada):


Titles on Amazon.com (US):

Monday, 25 June 2012

Red Lights ~ Movie Passes Giveaway Toronto Screening with Q&A Cillian Murphy and Rodrigo Cortés


Cillian Murphy with RED LIGHTS Director Rodrigo Cortés

Want to see an advance screening of the paranormal thriller Red Lights with director Rodrigo Cortés and actor Cillian Murphy in attendance for a Q&A? You know you do! Here are the film details:

Synopsis: "Two investigators of paranormal hoaxes, the veteran Dr. Margaret Matheson and her young assistant, Tom Buckley, study the most varied metaphysical phenomena with the aim of proving their fraudulent origin.

Simon Silver, a legendary blind psychic, reappears after an enigmatic absence of 30 years to become the greatest international challenge for both orthodox science and professional skeptics.

Tom starts to develop an intense obsession with Silver, whose magnetism becomes stronger with each new manifestation of inexplicable events. As Tom gets closer to Silver, tension mounts, and his worldview is threatened to its core..."

Red Lights stars Cillian Murphy, Robert De Niro, Sigourney Weaver, Elizabeth Olsen and is directed by Rodrigo Cortés. Here are the movie passes giveaway details:

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Toronto Red Lights Screening Details including Q&A with director Rodrigo Cortés and actor Cillian Murphy:
Date: Wednesday June 27, 2012; Showtime: 7:00 PM (Doors: 6:00PM)
Location: TIFF Bell Lightbox at 350 King Street West in Toronto, ON M5V 3X5
Click here for Screening & Enter PIN of 56A 35E B01

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

There are a limited number of passes for the screenings, so act quick!

Want to increase your chances for next time? Sign up for any of the Movie Moxie Newsletters as subscribers get first chance at any contests or giveaways. You can sign up here.

Thank you to Alliance Films for the movie passes giveaway!

Red Lights trailer:



Robert De Niro as “Simon Silver” in RED LIGHTS. Photo Courtesy of Alliance Films


Red Lights Poster Courtesy of Alliance Films

Saturday, 23 June 2012

Guest Podcast: Jersey Shore Shark Attack on The Saturday B-Movie Reel



I recently had the chance of guest co-hosting on The Saturday B-Movie Reel to chat about Jersey Shore Shark Attack and it was an absolute hoot chatting with host Kevin Bachelder and fellow co-host Jon from Boise. We had so much fun with this film that combines the craziness of the reality TV show Jersey Shore setting it as a backdrop and homaging the characters and pitting them against a shark attack. I thought it was so much fun. Check out our chat about it here over at Tuning into SciFi TV.

Jersey Shore Shark Attack aired on on Space on Saturday June 9, 2012. Space is continuing the summer Saturday movie fun with Arachnoquake starring Edward Furlong, Tracey Gold and Bug Hall fighting giant albino spiders on Saturday June 23, 2012 at 9pm EST and Bigfoot starring Danny Bonaduce and Barry Williams facing off on the hunt for the Bigfoot on Saturday June 30, 2012 at 9pm EST.


Jersey Shore Shark Attack Premiered on Space on Saturday, June 9 at 9 p.m. ET

Friday, 22 June 2012

Prometheus Vlog Review



The Countdown to Prometheus is complete with the viewing and reviewing of Prometheus, and of course it is a 100% spoiler-free review.

Thanks to everyone for their patience in waiting for the review, I hope you enjoy it.

Things mention in the vlog:
See more vlogs of film reviews, marathons and festival coverage over at my new You Tube Channel.

Film Fan Fridays for Friday June 22, 2012

Hello Film Fans and Fanatics!

Welcome to Film Fan Fridays for Friday June 22, 2012! It' been a heck of a hot week and I'm hoping to share this newsletter without my computer fizzling and sizzling!

In limited release this week we have a whole bunch of films to choose from and I know one that is on my radar is Your Sister's Sister from writer/director Lynn Shelton (Humpday, My Effortless Brilliance) with a fabulous cast including Mark Duplass, Emily Blunt and Rosemarie DeWitt. I think this week you could travel around the world in our limited release with documentary 5 Broken Cameras set in Palestine, Alps from Greece, El Jefe / The Boss a Canada/Columbia/Argentina co-production, Patang / The Kite from India and the South Korean romantic comedy All About My Wife / Nae Anaeui Modeun Geot. And you can bring it all home with the Canadian release of Bruno's Blues mockumentary/comedy that opens on on Saturday June 23, 2012 at The Carlton.

In wide release this week we have more than one of my most anticipated films of the year coming out with both female protagonist Pixar film Brave and the 2012 Movie Moxie Book to Film Club Selection Abraham Lincoln Vampire Hunter from director Timur Bekmambetov (Night Watch / Nochnoi Dozor, Day Watch / Dnevnoy Dozor) that's a genre masher bringing history and vampires together. Wow. I never thought the day would come where both films I was really looking forward to of the week would be in 3D. Yikes! How times change. Also out in wide release the apocalypse/armageddon friend-comedy Seeking a Friend for the End of the World starring Steve Carrell and Keira Knightly and the Bollywood film Teri Meri Kahaani.

Have a great weekend!

Shannon

Festival Watch

The Female Eye Film Festival
10th Anniversary Year
Continues until June 24, 2012 at the Carlton Cinema locations in Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Italian Contemporary Film Festival
June 26 - July 1, 2012 at various locations in Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Parkdale Film and Video Showcase
June 22 - 24, 2012 at various locations in Parkdale in Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Toronto Korean Film Festival
June22 - July 1, 2012 at Innis Town Hall in Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Special Screening

Toronto After Dark Film Festival Summer Screening
Double bill of Cuban zombie film Juan of the Dead / Juan de los Muertos (7pm) and haunted house flick The Pact (9:45PM)
Wednesday June 27, 2012 at The Bloor Cinema
See more information at the Toronto After Dark Film Festival website or Buy Tickets to the Summer Screenings Here.

Friday June 22, 2012 Releases

5 Broken Cameras
Dirs: Guy Davidi (Interrupted Streams) & Emad Burnat - feature film directorial debut
Documentary
Occupied Palestinian Territory/Israel/France/ The Netherlands
Limited Release
Official Film Site, IMDb Page, Trailer

Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter **2012 Movie Moxie Book to Film Club Selection**
Dir: Timur Bekmambetov (Night Watch / Nochnoi Dozor, Day Watch / Dnevnoy Dozor, Wanted)
Cast: Benjamin Walker, Rufus Sewell, Dominic Cooper, Anthony Mackie, Mary Elizabeth Winstead, Marton Csokas
USA
Limited Release
Film Facebook Page, IMDb Page, Trailer

All About My Wife / Nae Anaeui Modeun Geot
Dir: Min Kyu-Dong (All for Love, Memento Mori )
Cast: Im Soo-Jung, Lee Seon-Gyun, Ryu Seung-Ryong
South Korea
Limited Release
Official Film Site, IMDb Page, Trailer

Alps
Dir: Giorgos Lanthimos (Dogtooth)
Cast: Stavros Psyllakis, Aris Servetalis, Johnny Vekris
Greece
Limited Release
Official Film Site, IMDb Page, Trailer

Brave
Dirs: Brenda Chapman (The Prince of Egypt) & Mark Andrews - feature film directorial debut
Voices: Kelly MacDonald, Emma Thompson, Billy Connolly, Julie Walters, Kevin McKidd, Craig Ferguson, Robbie Coltrane
USA
Official Film Site, IMDb Page, Trailer

El Jefe / The Boss
Writer/Dir: Jaime Escallon-Buraglia (Sunshine Swim Team)
Cast: Marcela Benjumea, Mirta Busnelli, Carlos Hurtado, Katherine Porto
Canada/Columbia/Argentina
Limited Release
Official Film Site, IMDb Page, Trailer

Patang / The Kite
Dir: Prashant Bhargava - feature film directorial debut
Cast: Seema Biswas, Mukund Shukla, Aakash Maherya, Nawazuddin Siddiqui, Sugandha Garg, Hamid Shaikh
India/USA
Limited Release
Official Film Site, IMDb Page, Trailer

Seeking a Friend for the End of the World
Writer/Dir: Lorene Scafaria - feature film directorial debut
Cast: Steve Carell, Keira Knightley, Connie Britton, Adam Brody, Derek Luke, Melanie Lynskey, William Petersen, Patton Oswalt
USA/Singapore/Indonesia/Malaysia
Official Film Site, IMDb Page, Trailer

Teri Meri Kahaani
Dir: Kunal Kohli (Thoda Pyaar Thoda Magic, Fanaa)
Cast: Priyanka Chopra, Shahid Kapoor, Prachi Desai, Neha Sharma, Omar Khan, Greg Hefferna
India
Official Film Site, IMDb Page, Trailer

Your Sister's Sister
Writer/Dir: Lynn Shelton (Humpday, My Effortless Brilliance)
Cast: Emily Blunt, Rosemarie DeWitt, Mark Duplass, Mike Birbiglia
USA
Limited Release
No Official Film Site found, IMDb Page, Trailer

Saturday June 23, 2012

Bruno's Blues
Dir: Michael Simard - feature film directorial debut
Cast: Bruno Hubert, Mike Allen, Bill Campbell
Canada
Limited Release
Official Film Site, IMDb Page, Trailer

**please note this list of releases reflects first run film released in Toronto, Ontario, Canada as of June 22, 2012**

Thursday, 21 June 2012

Movie Moxie Podcast 76: Prometheus



This week on The Movie Moxie Podcast Shannon finally completes the Countdown to Prometheus with seeing... Prometheus! The marathoning continues with checking out the 7th film for the Bondathon with Diamonds are Forever (not a fave & the mystery of why I stopped at this film became very clear) and checking out DVD releases for this week June 19, 2012.
I apologize for the random construction sounds and cat meowing, I had a short window of opportunity to record in this crazy heat wave I have to work with what I got!

Time Coding
0:00 - 1:00 Intro
1:00 - 14:00 Prometheus Review
14:00 - 21:30 Bondathon: Diamonds are Forever
21:30 - 29:30 DVD Releases for June 19, 2012
29:30 - Outro

Show Notes

Rather watch than listen? See my vlogs for Diamonds are Forever and DVD releases June 19, 2012 here, and for the video fans feel free to Subscribe to my YouTube Page here.

Movie Moxie Podcast - A 100% spoiler-free film review podcast
You can subscribe to the Movie Moxie Podcast here:
Subscribe through iTunes here


Up next week: Reviews of Safety Not Guaranteed, Live and Let Die & possibly more!

Diamonds are Forever ~ Bondathon Film 7



We are back with the 7th Bond film where Sean Connery returns as Bond for Diamond Are Forever and they quickly reinstate his Bondness after the one and only film by George Lazenby with last weeks look at One Her Majesty's Secret Service. This time we are heading into the cold harshness of the 70's and Shannon quickly finds out what it was that stopped her first attempted at the Bondathon, and also commits to soldiering through and continuing on with the adventure this time around.

I do apologize that this is up a day later than planned, but the massive heat wave here in Toronto is making it a big challenging to do...anything...

Mentioned in this vlog:
Up Next for the Bondathon: Live or Let Die

Tuesday, 19 June 2012

Toronto After Dark Film Festival Summer Screening Announced!

Toronto After Dark Film Festival Summer Screenings Announced: Wed June 27 & Wed July 11, 2012


Toronto After Dark Film Festival Summer Screenings Announced!

Does it feel like October is way to far away to enjoy Toronto After Dark goodness? Then you are in luck as the festival recently announced they are heading up 2 nights of double bill mayhem at The Bloor Cinema this summer! On Wednesday June 27, 2012 and Wednesday July 11, 2012 we will have Cuban zombies, haunted houses, slasher comedy and a compilation found-footage film frenzy to enjoy. Sounds like an awesome selection to me! Here are the film and screening details:

Wednesday June 27, 2012: Juan of the Dead (7 pm) and The Pact (9:45 pm)
Cuban zombie film Juan of the Dead / Juan de los Muertos and haunted house flick The Pact

Juan of the Dead / Juan de los Muertos
Writer/Dir: Alejandro Brugués (Personal Belongings)
Cast: Alexis Díaz de Villegas, Jorge Molina, Andrea Duro
Cuba/Spain
trailer, website and IMDb Page

The Pact (2012)
Writer/Dir: Nicholas McCarthy - feature film directorial debut
Cast: Caity Lotz, Casper Van Dien, Agnes Bruckner, Mark Steger, Haley Hudson, Kathleen Rose Perkins, Sam Ball
USA
trailer and IMDb Page

Wednesday July 11, 2012 Detention (7 pm) and V/H/S (9:45 pm)
Slasher comedy Detention and a compilation found-footage film V/H/S from directors including Adam Wingard, Ti West (The Innkeepers) and Glenn McQuaid (I Sell the Dead).

Detention
Dir: Joseph Kahn - feature film directorial debut
Cast: Josh Hutcherson, Shanley Caswell, Spencer Locke, Dane Cook
USA
trailer, website and IMDb Page

V/H/S
Dirs (various): including Adam Wingard, Ti West (The Innkeepers) and Glenn McQuaid (I Sell the Dead)
Cast: Calvin Reeder, Lane Hughes, Adam Wingard, Hannah Fierman, Sophia Takal, Joe Swanberg, Joe Sykes, Drew Sawyer, Jason Yachanin
USA
trailer, website and IMDb Page

And for the filmmakers out there, remember Toronto After Dark Film Festival call for entries is now open! Regular deadline is June 29, 2012, the Final Deadline is July 20, 2012 and the Extended Final Deadline (exclusive to Withoutabox.com users) is July 27, 2012. See more about the call for entries here.

See more information at the Toronto After Dark Film Festival website or Buy Tickets to the Summer Screenings Here.

DVD Releases June 19, 2012



Time to take a look at a selection of DVD releases for Tuesday June 19, 2012!
  • Keyhole Historical-feel gangster film in the traditional wild atmospheric vibe of director Guy Maddin. Not my favourite Maddin, but did definitely enjoy the atmo and most of the bizarreness. Keyhole stars Jason Patric, Isabella Rossellini and Udo Kier,
  • 65_RedRoses (festival review) an amazing and inspiring documentary following a young woman with cystic fibrosis awaiting the call for a double lung transfer.
  • Big Miracle based on a true story about a save the whales from the ice around them, and honestly this one even the trailer can make me cry! It stars Drew Barrymore & John Krasinski and from director Ken Kwapis.
  • Exit Humanity (Review) a historical chronically of zombie apocalypse set during the US civil war, it certainly delves into the darkness of loss of love, desolation and despair and provides lots of zombie action.
  • Jeff, Who Lives at Home comedy starring Jason Segel as a man who doesn't leave home all that often, but has to take the journey. Also stars Ed Helms and Susan Sarandon and directed by Jay Duplass & Mark Duplass.
  • TV choices this week including Being Erica Season 4 (Amazon.ca only) starring Erin Karpluk as Erica in her continual journey of self-discovery while re-visiting her how self-history and The Complete First Season of Franklin and Bash starring Mark-Paul Gosselaar & Breckin Meyer.
  • Witchslayer Gretl is a B-movie that's definitely on my radar, it stars Shannon Doherty, Paul McGillion, Emilie Ullerup and it looks like a heck of a lot of fun. I'm always up for checking out witch flicks.
  • It's very exciting to share that we have not one but two Atom Egoyan films that are being released on BLU-RAY + DVD Combo's with the excellent The Sweet Hereafter and iconic and Exotica (Amazon.ca only)
  • The Disco Exorcist Definitely the wild card pick of the week, who can resist that title? Seriously?
  • Project X party time for 3 high school guys trying to make a name for themselves, this one I know I'm not the target market for. It stars Thomas Mann, Oliver Cooper and Jonathan Daniel Brown.
Titles on Amazon.ca(Canada):


Titles on Amazon.com (US):

Monday, 18 June 2012

My Week in Film: June 18, 2012: Cosmopolis


Image: Robert Pattinson and Kevin Durand star in COSMOPOLIS. Courtesy of eOne Films

This week I trekked out to the theatre to see our Book to Film Club selection of Cosmopolis (dir: David Cronenberg, Canada/France/Italy/Portugal/2012), and I now remember that a strong reason I picked it was to have a Canadian film included in the Book to Film Club and this was our first! Yay for that! Sadly, I didn't overly love the book by Don DeLillo as I couldn't connect to or believe in the protagonist Eric, played in the film by Robert Pattinson. He's introduced as rich, smart and with a staff so trained to respond to his every whim. Personally, I don't find that very interesting, and I didn't believe either the richness nor the intelligence of the character. Both the richness and intelligence were displayed, especially in the effects of, but I didn't believe it. I did find that it felt pretentious, which I had to look up to ensure it met the definition and "making claims to excellence or importance" and "doing things for show" both really describe the character, and the themes of the film. So left with not believing in the character, you are pretty much left with enjoying this 'near future' world, which again didn't quite read for me but baring that I was hoping with a cast that includes Juliette Binoche, Kevin Durand, Sarah Gadon, Paul Giamatti, Samantha Morton and Jay Baruchel I would at least be in for some good acting. And there was some, but only some.

For those who may not know, I'm a big fan of Twilight and have been impressed with Rob in other films including Little Ashes and his supporting role in Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, I think he's really got potential for acting but worry that due to his stardom the trajectories he can take don't match a normal learning curve, so he can be pretty much thrown to the wolves. In Cosmopolis, I felt that he is thrown to the wolves but from the structure of the film that parses out to many different conversations, often only with one other person, it's like many small battles as opposed to one big fight. The fight analogy is only in winning over the audience though, as it's how well the two people on screen work together that is going to win the audience over. I was won over by Samantha Morton the most, and it was strange because in a lot of what her character says is the most 'out there', yet I understood it and more importantly I felt that she understood it. If she wasn't in the film, I think I would have come away feeling very disappointed, but with her there I felt like I did walk away with something. I also enjoyed Kevin Durand as Eric's bodyguard/chief of security, although there wasn't much different in the various conversations in the film. The dialogue often felt like it was suppose to be very meaningful and insightful, yet I almost never felt it and on the flip side the there was so much flinging about in the limited space provided it really gave the impression of trying hard to be really interesting. But without impact on dialogue, this really felt like they were just making up for it.

I can sense the spirit of the book and the film are to engage the mind and tantalize the senses, and if people have that experience I am really happy for them. I know there are other films where I am right there with the character, nodding along in their challenges and cheering for them to take on and go for it, but I didn't feel that way about Cosmopolis. I felt pretty quickly that I wasn't the target audience because I didn't care about the characters. And if I don't care, then I'm barely there. It does feel trademark Cronenberg with the intellectual themes and speckled with visceral body craziness, so if that's what you are hoping for then Cosmopolis is one for you.

I saw Cosmopolis here in Toronto at the Varsity after it's June 8, 2012 wide release. For international release dates check here, although no US release date is noted I've 'heard' of August 2012 is when to expect if from several sources.

See also my Cosmopolis vlog review & Cosmopolis podcast review.

I'm excited to share that my vlog review of Cosmopolis has quickly become my most viewed video over at the Movie Moxie YouTube Channel. I do wish that had happened with a film I enjoyed more, but alas, that too could still happen.

Up next: Prometheus. I have actually now seen Prometheus but I need more than 24 hours to digest and relay my thoughts on it. I'll be reviewing it in vlog and podcast format this Friday June 22, 2012 as will write about it with next weeks My Week In Film post.


Image: Robert Pattinson and Sarah Gadon in COSMOPOLIS. Photo credit Caitlin Cronenberg Courtesy of eOne Films


Me seeing Cosmopolis!

Sunday, 17 June 2012

Book to Film Club Film: Cosmopolis



Book to Film Club June Film Selection: Cosmopolis

Our current film selection for the Movie Moxie 2012 Book to Film Club is Cosmopolis, directed and adapted by David Cronenberg and starring Robert Pattinson, Kevin Durand, Samantha Morten, Juliette Binoche, Sarah Gadon and Paul Giamatti. The film was released nationwide in Canada on June 8, 2012 and on July 15, 2012 in the UK as well as being screened at Cannes 2012 (see international release dates here).

The film follows the high powered Eric Packer (played by Robert Pattinson), a wealthy young man in the near future with many fixations and an entire staff catering to his every desire, often to his car as he rolls around town in terrible traffic. This one is much more about tone and style over what actually happens, and although is a pretty true and literal adaptation of the book. It does have the trademark visceral intensity that we've come to know from director David Cronenberg who has brought us everything form Eastern Promises to The Brood and Dead Ringers.

Here are some things to ponder when thinking, writing and/or journaling about the film:
  • Did you enjoy the film?
  • Was the film what you expected from reading the book?
  • How did you feel about the tone of the film?
  • Were the characters what you expected?
  • Were there characters, moments or ideas you liked better in the book? If so, what were they?
  • What was your favourite thing about the book?
  • Were there characters, moments or ideas you liked better in the film? If so, what were they?
  • What was your favourite thing about the film?
  • Was there anything you understood more after seeing the film?
  • Was there anything you felt was missing from the film?
  • Did the film capture the spirit of the book?
  • Who would you recommend the book to?
  • Who would you recommend the film too?
  • Are you happy you read the book before seeing the film?
  • Would you recommend people read the book before seeing the film?
  • What was the impact of reading the book before seeing the film?

While Cosmopolis is quite a faithful adaptation, I found it to not hit the key moments that stuck out for me while reading the book. It has some a few really good performances though, Samantha Morton in particularly stood out head and shoulders above the rest for me. See my Cosmopolis book review and film review over at my YouTube Page.

The 2012 Movie Moxie Book to Film Club is getting busier and busier, this month we have not only have Cosmopolis in theatres but also Abraham Lincoln Vampire Hunter being released on June 23, 2012. Plus our currently reading selection of The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky is a great summer read to enjoy. You can join in the fun at any time. For title announcements, Book to Film Club news and monthly selections you can sign up for email updates here.

Film Reviews - Portugal

Cosmopolis *

*indicates co-production

Back to Countries List

Friday, 15 June 2012

Cosmopolis Vlog Review



Film review of Movie Moxie 2012 Book to Film Club selection of Cosmopolis, directed and adapted by David Cronenberg and starring Robert Pattinson, Kevin Durand, Samantha Morten, Juliette Binoche, Sarah Gadon and Paul Giamatti.

I mention:

Up next week: Prometheus

See more vlogs of film reviews, marathons and festival coverage over at my new You Tube Channel.

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Film Fan Fridays for Friday June 15, 2012

Hello Film Fans and Fanatics!

Welcome to Film Fan Fridays for Friday June 15, 2012!

In limited release this week we have have a whopping three Canadian releases with the voyeur crime thriller 388 Arletta Avenue, indie awesomeness of i am a good person i am a bad person which has beautiful naturalism and quiet emotional intensity. Our third Canadian release is the road film Foreverland which just the trailer of the film got me teary. One film that certainly has my eye this week is Safety Not Guaranteed that's based on the idea of a journalist going undercover to respond to an ad for a time-travel companion, and I think we officially have enough films in the past few years to call scifi-drama a legit subgenre. Going for more straight drama we have The Woman in the Fifth / La femme du Vème with Ethan Hawke and Kristen Scott Thomas and in the land of comedy we have Lola Versus with Greta Gerwig. If documentaries are your thing you have three to choose from including Marina Abramovic: The Artist is Present centred on the Serbian performances artist, The Island President and Kivalina vs Exxon and for the Friday, June 15, 9:15 PM screening producer David Miller will be in attendance for a post-screening Q & A.

In wide release this week we have it's a bit more quiet with just three film including the Adam Sandler comedy That's My Boy, retro nostalgia look at hair metal with Rock of Ages starring Tom Cruise and the cricket-centric Bollywood film Ferrari Ki Sawaari.

Have a great weekend!

Shannon

Festival Watch

The Female Eye Film Festival
10th Anniversary Year!
June 20 - 24, 2012 at the Carlton Cinema locations in Toronto, Ontario, Canada

NXNE
See film program at NXNE here
Continues until June 17, 2012 in various locations in Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Toronto Japanese Film Festival

Continues until June 21, 2012 at various locations in Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Friday June 15, 2012 Releases

388 Arletta Avenue
Dir: Randall Cole (Real Time)
Cast: Nick Stahl, Mia Kirshner, Devon Sawa
Canada
Limited Release
No Official Film Site Found, IMDb Page, Trailer

Ferrari Ki Sawaari
Dir: Rajesh Mapuskar - feature film directorial debut
Cast: Sharman Joshi, Boman Irani, Ritwik Sahore
India
Official Film Site & Trailer, IMDb Page

Foreverland
Dir: Max McGuire (Crossing the Wake)
Cast: Max Thieriot, Laurence Lebeouf, Sarah Wayne Callies, Thomas Dekker, Matt Frewer, Juliette Lewis
Canada
Limited Release
Film Facebook Page, IMDb Page, Trailer

i am a good person i am a bad person
Writer/Dir: Ingrid Veninger (Only, MODRA)
Cast: Ingrid Veninger, Hallie Switzer
Canada
Limited Release
Official Film Site, IMDb Page, Trailer

The Island President
Dir: Jon Shenk (Lost Boys of Sudan)
Documentary
USA
Limited Release
Official Film Site, IMDb Page, Trailer

Kivalina vs Exxon
Dir: Ben Addelman (Hollywood Babylon, Bombay Calling)
Documentary
Canada/USA
Limited Release
Official Film Site, IMDb Page, No Trailer Found

Lola Versus
Dir: Daryl Wein (Breaking Upwards )
Cast: Greta Gerwig, Zoe Lister-Jones, Joel Kinnaman, Hamish Linklater, Debra Winger, Bill Pullma
USA
Limited Release
Official Film Site, IMDb Page, Trailer

Marina Abramovic: The Artist is Present
Dir: Matthew Akers - feature film directorial debut
Documentary
USA
Limited Release
Official Film Site, IMDb Page, Trailer

Rock of Ages
Dir: Adam Shankman (Hairspray, The Pacifier)
Cast: Tom Cruise, Julianne Hough, Diego Boneta, Russell Brand, Paul Giamatti, Catherine Zeta-Jones, Malin Ackerman, Mary J. Blige, Bryan Cranston, Alec Baldwin
USA
Official Film Site, IMDb Page, Trailer

Safety Not Guaranteed
Dir: Colin Trevorrow (Reality Show )
Cast: Aubrey Plaza, Mark Duplass, Jake Johnson, Karan Soni
USA
Limited Release
Official Film Site, IMDb Page, Trailer

That's My Boy
Dir: Sean Anders (Sex Drive)
Cast: Adam Sandler, Andy Samberg, Leighton Meester, James Caan, Milo Ventimiglia
USA
Facebook Film Page, IMDb Page, Trailer

The Woman in the Fifth / La femme du Vème
Dir: Pawel Pawlikowski (My Summer of Love, Last Resort)
Cast: Ethan Hawke, Kristin Scott Thomas, Joanna Kulig, Samir Guesmi
France/Poland/UK
Limited Release
Official Film Site, IMDb Page, Trailer

**please note this list of releases reflects first run film released in Toronto, Ontario, Canada as of June 15, 2012**
All content on Movie Moxie is written by Shannon Ridler, © 2006 - 2012