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Jay Stone and Katherine Monk movie reviews and profiles. Movies new to streaming / DVD.
Reviews of Canadian movies and filmmaker profiles by Katherine Monk and Jay Stone.

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Little Lion has a big roar

Movie review: Lion Dev Patel and Sunny Pawar bring the true story of Saroo Brierley's quest for home to the big screen with empathy and intimate emotional truth

Canadian women bound for Palm Springs

Movies: Palm Springs International Film Festival The partnership between Palm Springs and Telefilm continues to push the Canadian film cause in influential U.S. circles, with female directors taking centre stage By The Ex-Press (December 22, 2016) — A delegation of strong Canadian women will be heading to Palm Springs in the new year, showcasing work that touches on everything from Kenyan marathon runners to resource extraction and First Nations issues in the North.Anjali Nayar’s Gun Runners, Nettie Wild’s Koneline, Anne Émond’s Nelly and Chloé Robichaud’s Pays were selected to screen at this year’s Palm Springs International Film Festival, joining Zacharias Kunuk’s Maliglutit, Xavier Dolan’s Juste la fin du monde and Juan Andrés Arango’s X Quinientos as part of this year’s seven-film Canadian delegation, one of the strongest in recent years.“With a diverse mix of Canadian features—including works from emerging talent and an Indigenous pioneer, ...

John Madden hits home with Miss Sloan

Interview: John Madden on Miss Sloane The director of Shakespeare in Love says casting Jessica Chastain as a shrewd, morally ambiguous D.C. lobbyist was the best way to expose the ugliness of modern politics   By Katherine Monk WHISTLER, BC – John Madden doesn’t want to get bogged down by the F-word: Feminism has so much ancillary luggage, too many awkward hard edges to cram into the narrative anchovy tin called a feature film.Yet, Miss Sloane, the latest film from the Academy Award-nominated director of Shakespeare in Love points a laser beam at the modern female experience. A D.C.-set (Toronto-shot) thriller starring Jessica Chastain as the title character, Miss Sloane offers a close-up view of the lobbyist’s reality.Watching from a slightly distanced perspective, the viewer picks up the trail of professional lobbyist Elizabeth Sloane just as she embarks on a career move that will change her life forever.Madden was reluctant to give away too many details about his ...

Movie review: Miss Sloane is a murky thriller

Jessica Chastain is compelling to watch, but this story of  a morally ambiguous lobbyist in Washington is both narratively preposterous and emotionally incoherent 

Tatiana Maslany, Tom Cullen fire up first-timer

Interview: Joey Klein on The Other Half In a world full of malaise, misanthropy and unmitigated sorrow, first-time filmmaker Joey Klein says he wants to hold up a funhouse mirror to ambient pain By Katherine Monk (November 30, 2016) Joey Klein is what you’d call a ‘late bloomer.’When he was a kid growing up in Montreal, he assumed he’d become a doctor like his father. He ended up in McGill management school instead, and hated it. So he headed to New York City at the age of 25 to study acting, a career he pursued with success, landing roles in American Gangster and 12 Monkeys -- to name a few.Yet, he craved a bigger challenge still. He had a hankering to address the ambient angst of modern experience – without exploiting Hollywood trope – so he started writing. And now, just a year shy of his 40th birthday, he's making his directorial debut with the theatrical release of The Other Half.“Originally, it was a story about grief… and about grief over time. ...

Between the lines: Delicate tragedy of Manchester by the Sea

Interview: Kenneth Lonergan on Manchester by the Sea Kenneth Lonergan makes a triumphant return to movies with a story about a solitary man who must go back home to face his family and the events that changed his life By Jay Stone TORONTO — There’s a scene in the penetrating and devastating drama Manchester by the Sea where Casey Affleck, playing a loner with a crippling secret in his past, stands in front of a burning building. It’s defining tragedy in the film: the Affleck character, named Lee, has just been to the grocery store to buy some 2 a.m. snacks and beer, and he has returned to find his life going up in flames.It’s the kind of moment that would call — in a lesser film — for a lot of outsized emotions. But Manchester by the Sea is too quiet and controlled for that: it’s written and directed by Kenneth Lonergan, a master of understated sadness, and has in Affleck a leading man whose own work (he’s the younger, less famous brother of Ben) reflects a though...

Elle and the politics of rape

Movie Review: Elle Paul Verhoeven's provocation gives Isabelle Huppert a difficult and complex role, but the movie itself is a confused series of disturbing incidents about the meaning of sexual assault

Fantastic Beasts found but the magic is missing

Movie review: Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them Eddie Redmayne unpacks some familiar plays for sympathy as a magical brand of Dr. Doolittle in an undeniably disappointing Harry Potter prequel

Arrival proves mind-altering

Movie review: Arrival Denis Villeneuve's latest may look like a simple first-contact story, but it goes much deeper as it questions the linear nature of time and the role of language

Movie review: The Handmaiden is a mysterious seduction

Park Chan-wook's new movie is a tale of sex and betrayal that takes the erotic games of Dangerous Liaisons and transfers them to occupied Korea