The lads of The Riot Club – an exclusive club for 10 of Oxford University’s richest and brightest young men – make “Gossip Girl”’s Chuck Bass, at his rapiest, look like a prince. And this is a guy who traded the love of his life for a hotel before sleeping with his barely consenting step-sister. Like Chuck Bass, these boys were raised in the lap of luxury and privilege. As they say in Britain, they’re posh, which comes with special customs, accents, and terminology.
This year marks my 12th time attending the Toronto International Film Festival, meaning I’ve been coming here for nearly half my life. After making the rounds on the film festival circuit this year – first at Sundance, then at Cannes – I’m still a firm believer that TIFF is the best film festival of them […]
“Alive Inside” opens on a ninety-year-old woman, sitting in a chair set against a black background, explaining that she can’t remember anything. The setting is very deliberate: she suffers from dementia, and as the film will argue repeatedly throughout, people with dementia in nursing homes live in a world devoid of meaning. We watch her start listening to Louis Armstrong’s “When the Saints Go Marching In,” and she lights up, telling us it reminds her of her school days. Then, the film cuts to an old black-and-white film strip, a stand-in for the kinds of memories the music must be evoking. The stories of her life start pouring out. What the social worker Dan Cohen discovered is that music seems to unlock a previously inaccessible world of memories for people with dementia, and “Alive Inside” follows his journey to bring this joy to more people.
Starring Daniel Radcliffe and Zoe Kazan as a pair of Torontonian friends, The F Word (or What If, as its known stateside) asks, what happens when you meet someone you really connect with, and want to hold onto, when dating isn’t an option?
If Magic in the Moonlight were made by any other filmmaker than Woody Allen, it would probably seem like a perfectly agreeable romantic comedy. It stars Colin Firth playing a rendition of his trademark role, the charming curmudgeon, or you know, Mr Darcy, and features a plethora of clever one-liners and lovely 1930s costumes, especially the […]
Most films that tackle something somewhat scientific take on scientific advisors to make sure they get things right. It’s often a job reserved for prestigious scientists: Carolyn Porco, for instance, who runs the JPL lab, was the advisor for J.J. Abraams’s first “Star Trek” film. Given the absence of good science in most movies, including that one, I can only assume that filmmakers don’t listen too much to their scientific advisors. On the other hand, we rarely see characters who act and talk like scientists – David Auburn’s “Proof”, about mathematicians, is one of the rare exceptions – in part, I would guess, because most filmmakers don’t start out by getting a STEM degree, like Shane Carruth (“Primer”) did.
The twelve-year-old title character in “Siddharth” is only on-screen for a couple of seconds at the beginning of the film as his bus pulls away and he waves furiously goodbye to his father, Mahendra (Rajesh Tailang). We barely get a good look at him; much of their dialogue plays out on a black screen before […]
After almost a decade of selling out shows in their very intimate hole-in-the-wall theatre on Sutter Street, the San Francisco Playhouse (SF Playhouse) moved to bigger and better digs on Post St two years ago. It’s allowed them to expand their audience and scope of production, but they’re also going through some growing pains. When […]