It takes four minutes and 14 seconds before the title of Avi Belkin’s brilliant documentary about legendary American journalist Mike Wallace finally turns up. That interval is a capsule of what the remaining 127 minutes will reveal: that Wallace’s 60-year-long career was more complicated than you could ever guess by simply watching the game-changing, compelling interviews he did on 60 Minutes, beginning in 1968 and continuing until his retirement 37 years later. Keep Reading
Tales from the Winnipeg Film Group, directed by Kevin Nikkel and Dave Barber
The fiction connected to a myth is what makes it true. The myth attached to the Winnipeg Film Group (WFG) is that it is a magical place inside a freezing and isolated city that produces eccentric filmmakers and unique films. Keep Reading
Barbara Rubin & the exploding NY Underground Directed by Chuck Smith
Memory’s dark twin is forgetfulness. Because of its presence, history is often obliged to curl back on itself so that it can set in motion a different story. Chuck Smith’s 78-minute-long documentary on the place of Barbara Rubin in New York’s film and music underground in the 1960s is a film that puts memory so unequivocally back into the historical narrative, it is impossible to view the years from 1963 to 1968 in the way they had previously been presented. Keep Reading
“Anthropocene: The Human Epoch,” directed by Jennifer Baichwal, Nicholas de Pencier and Edward Burtynsky, 126 minutes, 2018
The last thing we see in “Anthropocene: The Human Epoch”, the devastatingly important documentary made by filmmaker Jennifer Baichwal, cinematographer Nicholas de Pencier and photographer Edward Burtynsky, is a text dedicated to Sudan, the name of the last surviving male northern white rhino. Keep Reading
Destiny films presents ‘North Korea Singapore Summit Video,’ Directed by Donald Trump, produced by the National Security Council
I have been the film columnist for this magazine for 15 years and for many years before that was the film critic for CBC television in Winnipeg. I admit that I had become jaded watching Hollywood producers, year after swampy year, pull from their filmy top hats the same old tired cinematic rabbit tricks, so I take special delight in being able to review a movie masterpiece.
Final Portrait, Written and Directed by Stanley Tucci
In Paris in 1964 the Swiss-Italian artist Alberto Giacometti asked James Lord, his friend and an American art critic, to sit for a portrait. It would require only a single sitting lasting two or three hours and then Lord could go back to America as he had planned. A fortnight later, and after 18 unpredictable sessions
Cronos, The Devil’s Backcone, Pan’s Labyrinth, directed by Guillermo del Toro
The Devil’s Backbone, the second of three early films by the Mexican filmmaker Guillermo del Toro, which have been released as a Criterion boxed set, opens in an isolated orphanage in the final months of the Spanish Civil War.
The Green Fog, directed by Evan Johnson, Galen Johnson, and Guy Maddin
In Vertigo, Alfred Hitchcock’s 1958 masterpiece, and arguably the greatest film ever made, John ‘Scottie’ Ferguson, played by James Stewart, visits his old friend, the shipbuilding magnate and wife-murderer-in-waiting, Gavin Elster, and they talk about San Franciso, the city in which they both live.
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