Review – ‘Barb and Star Go to Vista Del Mar’

Fresh off her stint as Wonder Woman’s nemesis in ‘WW84’, Kristen Wiig is back! She’s paired up with her ‘Bridesmaids’ co-writer friend Annie Mumolo to write and portray Barb and Star. Two middle-aged women on the verge of … something? Trying to write a synopsis for this movie is somewhat pointless. Is it a funny …

JIFF 2021 Review – ‘Non Odiare (Thou Shalt Not Hate)’

Is it morally right to not help someone if they are a bad person? Director Mauro Mancini tries to answer this question, but limps around trying to find a satisfying answer. Simone Segre (Alessandro Gassmann) is a Jewish-Italian doctor with daddy issues who allows a hit and run victim to die after discovering he’s a …

JIFF 2021 Review – ‘Adventures of a Mathematician’

Biopics are a tough thing to get right. Either your subject is so well known that you can’t possibly do them justice, or you pluck someone out of relative obscurity and introduce them to the world. A daunting task that ‘Adventures of a Mathematician’ tries to take on to the best of its ability. Stan …

Review – ‘Judas and the Black Messiah’

“What would you tell your son about what you did then?” This question is asked of LaKeith Stanfield’s William O’Neal in the opening scene of Shaka King’s newest film ‘Judas and the Black Messiah,’ but it could just as easily be directed at the audience, asked to reflect on what role we’ve all played in our current …

Review – ‘I Blame Society’

Hollywood ruins lives. What started as a joke casually said by a friend about her ability to commit murder, Gillian (Gillian Wallace Horvat), takes this opportunity to prove she’s a fresh, creative filmmaker and capable of murder in the same breath. Armed with a GoPro and a DSLR, Gillian documents her attempt to commit the …

Review – ‘Red Dot’

Alain Darborg’s Red Dot offers everything you would expect from a survival thriller but struggles to bring anything new to the table.  Netflix’s first-offering of an original Swedish-language feature brings us to the vast snowy landscapes of the Swedish countryside, accompanied by young, married couple Nadja (Nanna Blondell) and David (Anastasios Soulis). Their marriage is …

Review – ‘There Is No “I” in Threesome’

What’s in your monogamish manifesto? Ollie and Zoe are getting married within the year and they are taking us on a journey of how much sex they can have with other people while they pick out the center pieces. Ollie, an Indian-German filmmaker, and Zoe, an actress from New Zealand, love each other so much …

JIFF 2021 Review – ‘Shiva Baby’

Forced family functions are an absolute nightmare. Awkward social interactions, invasive questions from people you barely even know, let alone like. The first directorial outing from Emma Seligman dives head first into one of those dreaded afternoons. Danielle (Rachel Sennott) is lost in life. Her parents pay her way as she switches majors in college …

Review – ‘News of the World’

Tom Hanks as Captain Jefferson Kyle Kidd in News of the World, co-written and directed by Paul Greengrass. In this day and age there’s an abundance of news available to pretty much anyone who’s interested. It’s almost hard to imagine a time when news didn’t travel that fast, literally. In the new Western from Paul …

Review – ‘Archipel’

I must give praise to the director, Félix Dufour-Laperrière, for this experimental/animated film for its use of both traditional animation and found footage mixed media. Beautiful images flow around while two disembodied voices wax philosophical in French about the physical and metaphoric trappings of land. The imagery doesn’t always coincide with what is being said …