TIFF 2021: Hold Your Fire dir. Stefan Forbes

New York. 1973. While it looks like a different time on film, not everything has changed, and consequently, Forbes documentary, which looks at a hostage situation that featured around the clock coverage at the time is just as relevant today as it was then. There’s errors on both sides, accusations, instituionalised racism, redemption for some,…

Parable of the Sower (1993) – Octavia E. Butler

Octavia E. Butler’s science fiction tale, that follows a young woman of colour on her quest to understand herself, the ideas of god, and the destiny of humanity. Within pages of this novel, I was completely swept up in Butler’s storytelling style, her characters, and the world she created. And here’s the thing, the world…

The Ballad of Black Tom (2016) – Victor LaValle

H.P. Lovecraft gets a fantastic spin in this novella by Victor LaValle. Lovecraft is hard to admit you like, because his stories of cosmic horror and old ones are so good, and have become such a cornerstone of horror fiction, but he was just so racist and that permeated all of his writing. The Ballad…

Lovecraft Country (2016) -Matt Ruff

This week I dove into Matt Ruff’s brilliantly entertaining Lovecraft Country, which takes all the things you love about a good Lovecraft story; otherworldly horror, science fiction mixed with horror, and some other familiar horror tropes, the creepy doll, the haunted house, and deliver it without Lovecraft’s far too prominent racism. As much as I…

Diamonds Are Forever (1956) – Ian Fleming

The fourth James Bond adventure by Ian Fleming is on my book shelf this week, and I dug into it eagerly. Despite some troubling moments of racism, 007’s literary adventure in this book is damned enjoyable, and you can see a number of themes and locales survived the jump to the big screen with Sean…

Casino Royale (1953) – Ian Fleming

Some twenty years ago, my sister gifted me with six of Ian Fleming’s original James Bond adventures. First printings from the Macmillan Company, these wonderful little hardcovers were in great condition but sans books jackets. I hadn’t read any of the Fleming Bonds since my early teens, when I was in the midst of discovering…

Blinded By The Light (2019) – Blu-Ray Review

It’s hard to tell which songs will speak to you, which ones will define your existence, which will resonate, and inspire you. That’s the basis of Warner Brothers new film Blinded by the Light which comes home on blu-ray and DVD today. This time, the music that touches a soul is that of Bruce Springsteen…

Revenge of the Zombies (1943) – Steve Sekely

Not all zombie movies are going to be winners, and I realize that as I continue to explore the dark recesses of DK Canada’s Monsters in the Movies book, and its chapter on zombies. This feature from 1943 is too short (and still feels too long) and doesn’t have a lot going for it, despite…

Zombies on Broadway (1945) – Gordon Douglas

DK Canada’s Monsters in the Movies book by director John Landis, moves on to the realm of the mad scientist, leaving werewolves behind. And the first one I dove into was this genuinely funny film from 1945. It’s marred by moments of racism, but the rest of it proves to be very enjoyable. It what…

Miami Vice (1987) – Amen… Send Money, and Death and the Lady

Vice detective Ricardo Tubbs (Philip Micheal Thomas) finds himself in trouble in the first episode this week, Amen… Send Money. Written by John Schulian. It first aired on 2 October, 1987 and sees Brian Dennehy as Reverend Bill Bob Proverb. Rico and his partner Sonny Crockett (Don Johnson) get in deep when Tubbs busts a…

Fahrenheit 11/9 (2018) – Micheal Moore

A failed democracy. Democrats and Republicans not representing the working class who are forced into voting for people picked by the party ‘elites.’ Despotism. Nazism. Parkland. Flint. Greed. Racism. Micheal Moore’s films usually have a comedic hint to them to balance the bitter pill of reality that is being displayed by the documentary filmmaker, Fahrenheit…