I hope and trust and hope that everyone had a lovely holiday. Ours was fun. Maybe a little to much of, well, everything. I do enjoy the holidays but I find that they are just too long. And just when I think it’s over and my kid is back to school, wham!, one more day off! Like seriously! Our year started off with the hot water tank pooching out on New Year’s Eve and then having no electricity for a few hours on Sunday. Add to that our street (like most I assume) hasn’t been touched since it snowed at the beginning of December, the streetlights have been out for a month and the recycling has only been picked up once since that time as well. Life is hard in this day and age! No big deal though, we’re tough. We’re Canadian!
We’ll continue with our staff’s picks for the year further on down the newsletter. I’ll have mine all shiny and polished and ready to go next week.
Cosmos – Bizarre, surreal, hilarious and poignant. What else would you expect from Andrzej Zulawski (Possession)?
Deepwater Horizon – Marky Mark takes his crunchy abs onto the ill-fated oil rig in the Gulf of Mexico. Shouldn’t those BP scumbags be in prison by now? Oh ya I forgot; oil, greed, absence of responsibility, capitalism.
Denial – Good-looking courtroom heavy about a despicable Holocaust denier who sues an acclaimed writer and historian for libel. Stars Rachel Weisz so it has that going for it.
Girls Season 5 – More Girls!
Middle School: The Worst Years of My Life – Family comedy about a rebellious young buck who doesn’t agree with all the tight rules at school. Family friendly chaos, I presume, ensues.
Shetland Season 3 – More crimes are solved by the crack team of Shetlandonians in this fine fine mystery drama thriller type show.
When the Bough Breaks – Mediocre, by-the-numbers “thriller” that finds a crazy baby surrogate becoming a little too interested in the hunky husband. Does that really happen? Like, really?
Before I Wake
Birth of a Nation
Broad City S 3
Homeland S 5
Mr. Robot S 2
The Whole Truth
Best of the Year Staff Picks!
DYLAN’S PICKS FOR 2016
1. Hell Or High Water
2. Whiskey Tango Foxtrot
3. Captain America: Civil War
4. Sing Street
5. Eye In The Sky
6. Captain Fantastic
7. 10 Cloverfield Lane
8. Hunt For The Wilderpeople
9. OJ: Made In America
10. 11 22 63
Alex’s Choices (I think he should watch more films!)
OJ SIMPSON: MADE IN AMERICA
TRAIN TO BUSAN
RJ! (I think he watched too many films!)
1. Toni Erdmann. 2016 . dir. Maren Ade. Comedy has reached a new level. Human, hilarious, and classic. Political and personal.
2. Aquarius. 2016 dir. Kleber Mendonca Filho. Sonia Braga reaches new levels in this drama about a middle age music critic who is a survivor and a fighter and a lover. Amazing music choices naturally!
3. Arrival. 2016 dir, Denis Villeneuve. Sci-fi drama that hits home and hits the heart. Lush, atmospheric, and moving. Blade Runner 2049 just might be amazing!
4. The Fits. 2016. di. Anna Rose Holmer. Coming of age story with no tired tropes. Female director, female lead, and completely innovative in its visual storytelling. Magic realism at its finest.
5. Paterson. 2016. dir Jim Jarmusch. A movie about a poet and his friends and his neighbourhood that magically captures the ebb and flow of poetry. Driver and Farahani are stellar!
6. A Bigger Splash. 2016. dir. Luca Gaudino. A fantastic summer getaway to a small island in Italy. Amazing nuanced performances from Swinton and Fiennes . Characters that seem real and have so much to say without using words.
7. Elle. 2016. dir. Paul Verhoeven. Everyones favourite sleaze meister tackles everyones least favourite subject…rape. What could have been a train-wreck ends up being a masterful psychological study in victim and victimhood. Huppert is unstoppable.
8. 54 The Directors cut. 1998/2016. dir. Mark Christopher. This often maligned period piece has found its true self in the extended/re-edited directors cut which deserves new appreciation. Mike Meyers is really great and so is the whole cast.
9. The Wailing. 2016. dir Hong Jin Na. The best horror movie of 2016. Hong marks new territory in this journey into folklore and superstition and in the meantime scares the shit out of you.
10. Maplethorpe: Look at the Pictures. 2016. dirs. Fenton Bailey + Randy Barbato. A stunning journey into one of the most important photo artists ever. More relevant in todays political climate than ever.
11. Only Yesterday. 1991. dir Isao Takahata. A 25 year-old movie that is timeless. Finally released in North America. A trip into the childhood and memories of a young woman and how they shaped who she is. Amazing!
12. Neruda. 2016. dir Pablo Lahrain. The chilean master does it again in this anti-biopic biopic. Instead of telling a A to B story, Lahrain infuses the cinematic language of film to add to the romance and passion of the folk hero to create hybrid noir/western/epic thats full of charm.
13. The VVitch. 2015. dir, Robert Eggers. The second best horror movie of the year. A feminist-ish folk tale of insanity and desolation in the middle of nowhere. Haunting and frenetic.
14. Neon Bull. 2015. dir. Gabriel Mascaro. Sensual and dreamlike. A tale of dreams and limitations of class among poor cattle handlers in a Brazilian rodeo. Political under the surface and visually impressive.
15. Weiner Dog. 2016. dir. Todd Solondz. America’s least favourite satirist is exactly what America needs. Darkly comic and on point. Solondz returns to form with his most hilarious and apt movie since Happiness.
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