Toronto After Dark 2019: The Assent (2019) – Pearry Teo

There’s a Barker/Lovecraftian feel to the gritty dirtiness of this entry in the Toronto After Dark film festival. Couched in a house covered in unnerving art, and filled with troubling apparitions and visions there is an aggressive edge to The Assent in the way it is shot, and the way the story unfolds. Mostly. Halfway…

Ju Dou (1990) – Yimou Zhang and Fengliang Yang

The beautiful, romantic and tragic Ju Dou is the next title on the What Else to Watch list as I continue to work my way through the immensely enjoyable The Movie Book from DK Canada. Following my screening of Raise the Red Lantern, this was one of the book’s recommendations. Starring Li Gong as the…

Dumbo (2019) – Tim Burton

I’m not sure how I feel yet about Disney’s apparent need to revisit their classic animated films and turn them into live-action films with computer-generated animation. Are they worried that the relevance of their classic films has reached an end and want to revitalize what they see as diminishing returns on them? I’m not sure….

Space: 1999 (1977) – The Immunity Syndrome, and The Dorcons

This is it, the last week of Space: 1999, and while some of it has been very good, and a number of stories showed some promise, the series, as a whole, has not weathered the decades as well as it could have. The penultimate episode is The Immunity Syndrome (not to be confused with the…

The Lair of the White Worm (1987) – Ken Russell

Ken Russell’s cheeky Brit horror The Lair of the White Worm is the next title to bite into as I continue my time with the vampire section of DK Canada’s Monsters in the Movies book by director John Landis. Based loosely on the story by Bram Stoker, the film features Hugh Grant, Amanda Donohoe, Peter…

Red Beard (1965) – Akira Kurosawa

Red Beard is the next recommendation from the What Else to Watch list in DK Canada’s The Movie Book, following my screening of Rashomon. This film marks the last collaboration between Kurosawa, and iconic Japanese actor, Toshiro Mifune. Over a sprawling, and engaging three hours, Kurosawa explores humanism and existentialism through this adaption of a…

Coco (2017) – Lee Unkrich, and Adrian Molina

A fiesta for the heart, and the souls. Coco is another proud feather for Pixar, and the House of Mouse. Pixar, since its first full length feature, Toy Story in 1995, has made some of my all time pieces of not only family entertainment, but heart-touching tales filled with humour, amazing art, brilliant stories and…

The Passion of Joan of Arc (1928) – Carl Theodor Dreyer

No makeup, close-ups and harsh lighting put Maria Falconetti on the screen as Joan of Arc in a way that hasn’t been seen since. Carl Dreyer’s retelling of the story of the French heroine is the next big title in DK Book’s The Movie Book. We are invited to take a front row seat for…

Star Trek: The Original Series (1968) – The Empath and Elaan of Troyius

Captain’s log: stardate 5121.5 The Empath is an interesting episode, written by Joyce Muskat and with an original airdate of 6 December, 1968, this one uses a bit of minimalist set design to give it an almost surreal feel. Captain Kirk (William Shatner), Spock (Leonard Nimoy) and Dr. McCoy (DeForest Kelley) find themselves trapped in…

The Impossible Voyage (1904) – Georges Melies

Also known as Whirling the Worlds, Melies next masterpiece is my port of call as I continue exploring the trailblazing work of the French showman, thanks to DK Books’ The Movie Book. Running about twenty minutes, the short uses Jules Verne’s Journey Through the Impossible as its basis. A group of explorers and an inventor…