Making a movie about conversion therapy is not an easy task. Not to say that conversion therapy is a completely unrepresented theme in cinema: to name a few, there is the cult favorite But I'm A Cheerleader (1999), the Merchant-Ivory classic Maurice (1987), and the teen satirical comedy Saved! (2004).
Studio 54, in all its beautiful, debauched glory, needs very little introduction. The discotheque on 54th street and 8th Ave — in both its short-lived tenure and everlasting memory— is intrinsically interwoven within the cultural fabric of New York City, and is arguably emblematic of a long bygone, restlessly mythologized era. What Matt Tynauer manages to capture is a comprehensive, loving retrospective of its rise and fall, through the eyes of its founders, employees, and devout attendees.
Kirill Serebrennikov's latest feature takes us back to the USSR in an exuberant attempt at capturing a Soviet rock legend, Kino, teetering on the very cusp of stardom. The plot unfolds over a single summer in Leningrad, chronicling the youthful energy of the Soviet rock scene of the 80's through the ascent of a then-unknown Viktor Tsoi (Teo Yoo) in an imaginative, highly stylized black and white cinematography.
Former actor turned writer-director Brady Corbet helms the tale of a female singer-songwriter who goes from tragedy to...?
From September 28 - October 13, 2017, the Vancouver international Film Festival hit screens throughout the city. Some of CJSF's film buffs caught some of the festival flicks and delivered their takes on some highlights of the festival.
The Crescent by Scott Wood
On September 7, I attended the Indie Filmmakers Lab premiere screening at the Cinematheque. The theatre was already filled up when I arrived and I could feel good energy amongst the audience, all eager to see some films. There were nine films, each ranging from 3 to 8 minutes in length, created by youth between the ages of 14 and 19.
I told myself that my two teachers, both middle-aged Chinese gentlemen, were the last people I'd take to see Tampopo. I told my brother as much, and he agreed. Yet as it turned out, both my teachers accompanied me to the Cinematheque late this January to watch the new digital restoration of Tampopo on the big screen.
A popular topic amongst many of the films at VIFF this year is mental health. Whether characters are learning to live with the complications of specific diagnoses or coming to grips with the realities of mental health in general, filmmakers are creating substantial narratives that represent the complexities of being human. Kevin Funk’s tense pseudo-thriller Hello Destroyer, is a prime example of an authentic and powerful portrayal of the impacts of one’s social environment on mental health.
Victoria is many things: high-octane heist-thriller, transnational drama, triumphant experiment in technique, and a 'True Berliner' wunderkind. None of these qualities stood out to me when the credits flashed across the screen at its wind-down conclusion. None mattered at the end, save for the titular character and the fates of the Berliner bunch themselves.