Hot Docs 2016: Beware the Slenderman – Irene Taylor Brodsky

  Having its international premiere last night at the Lightbox,  Irene Taylor Brodsky’s film is a slick looking, unnerving and surprisingly emotional look at the blurring of fiction and reality in the modern age, as two young girls, Anissa and Morgan succumb to the terrors and stories of the internet created character of the Slenderman,…

Hot Docs 2016: Ukrainian Sheriffs – Roman Bondarchuk

  Having it’s North American premiere last night at the Scotiabank theatre, this tragic-docu-drama follows two sheriffs, Viktor and Volodya in a tiny Ukrainian village near Crimea. By turns funny, and emotionally stirring, the two officers, selected by the mayor perform all manner of services in the village as they cruise around in their beaten up…

Hot Docs 2016: The Mind Reels chats with Cheer Up

  Sue and I were delighted to sit down with the director, Christy Garland, and the subjects of the truly enjoyable documentary, Cheer Up, a film that follows a cheer coach, Miia Norvapalo, and two of her squad, Patricia Fisk and Aino Selin through their personal lives, as well as their race to win the…

Hot Docs 2016: The Mind Reels chats with Aim for the Roses

  Hot Docs is well under way and Sue and I are having a great time!! We’ve seen some great films, and have had some wonderful interviews. We chatted with John Bolton and Mark Haney, the director and subject of Aim for the Roses, a doc, by Bolton, about a concept album, by Haney, about a failed attempt…

Hot Docs 2016: Life, Animated – Roger Ross Williams

  If there is a more honest, emotional and human film at this year’s Hot Docs Film Festival, I can’t imagine what it could be. Owen Suskind, the young autistic man who is the focus of William’s objective eye, is a brilliant soul, and we learn through the film, his story, his life, and his…

Hot Docs 2016: Obit – Vanessa Gould

  Having its international premiere this evening at 9:15 at the Bloor Hot Docs Cinema, is what may be my favorite documentary at the festival so far. With additional screenings on Tuesday May 3 at 3:45 at the Isabel Bader Theatre, and again at 9:15 on Saturday May 7, with a final screening at the…

Hot Docs 2016: Cheer Up – Christy Garland

  Having its World Premiere this evening at Scotiabank at 7pm is this charming, emotional, little gem, that takes us to northern reaches of Finland’s Arctic Circle, and into the lives of some wonderful young women, cheerleaders, who have big hearts, and bigger dreams. Led by their coach Miia, this cheerleading team tries to win…

Hot Docs 2016: The Slippers – Morgan White

  Movie history, Hollywood dreams, conspiracies, finger-pointing, millions of dollars, back-stabbing, and the most iconic items in cinema history, Dorothy’s ruby slippers from The Wizard of Oz are the topics up for perusal in White’s documentary, The Slippers. Having its Canadian Premiere this afternoon at the Lightbox at 3:15pm, the film delves into the world…

Hot Docs 2016: Operation Avalanche – Matt Johnson

  It’s right there in the title, Operation Avalanche, it’s a snow job. This faux documentary is played straight, pretending to be a film edited together from film shot by a pair of agents (Matt Johnson and Owen Williams) posing as filmmakers, working on a documentary about the Apollo program at the height of the…

Hot Docs 2016: Credit for Murder – Vladi Antonevicz

  In a documentary that plays more like a thriller than a Hot Docs, Antonevicz’s dark entry into this year’s film festival is a stunning ride. Using pacing, framing and structure like a standard Hollywood thriller this one captivatesd as much as it generates hate for it’s ready made villains, Neo-Nazis. When a YouTube video…

Hot Docs 2016: Chatting with The League of Exotique Dancers

  The Hot Docs Film Festival gets underway today, and it’s opening night film features some amazing women. Sue and I got to sit down and chat with three of them, the film’s director, Rama Rau as well as burlesque legends, Camille 2000 and Judith Stein. We chatted about the film, feminism, burlesque, stripping, stage…