Featured image: Timothy V. Murphy as Ben in New Year. (Courtesy of Nathan Sutton.) In New Year, celebrity photographer Kat (Elisha Renee Sutton, who also co-writes the film) and her esteemed playwright husband, Ben (Timothy V. Murphy), host a New Year’s Eve party, inviting some of their closest friends to celebrate and usher in the [...]
In this review, I take a look at that the horror film "Lair," starring Corey Johnson as a skeptic of the paranormal, setting out to capture something paranormal on tape to get his friend out of prison. The film has a strong look and some decent scares, but is too convoluted to be truly entertaining.
The Greenhouse is mostly a lovely drama with sci-fi elements, and some thrills thrown into the third act for good measure. In the film, daughter Beth (Jane Watt) is still grieving over the loss of one of her mothers; toughest for her since she was the one who stayed back in town with them. When her siblings reunite for their mom Ruth’s (Camilla Ah Kin) birthday, Beth also finds the titular greenhouse, an alternate world that let’s her watch old memories and see her late mom.
Featured image: The alien bows on stage after Alien on Stage. (Courtesy of Alien on Stage.) Directed by Lucy Harvey, Danielle Kummer. Starring (as self) Jason Hill, Lydia Hayward, Jacqui Roe. Runtime 1h 26 min. Alien on Stage had its latest festival stop as part of the Nightstream Film Festival. Some spoilers follow. Alien on Stage [...]
Cannon Arm and the Arcade Quest follows a group of friends who are united by their love of video games and the Bip Bip Bar. They’re also united by the loss of a friend named Thomas who committed suicide some years prior. At the centre of the friend group is our main character, Kim Cannon Arm.
A video game legend, Kim is known for playing the 1983 arcade game “Gyruss” for 49 straight hours on one coin. Obviously a very long time, but for further context, the average game of “Gyruss” lasts 3-4 minutes. Even crazier, Kim sets out to be the first person to play an arcade game for 100 hours straight.
Hellbender is one of those films that give a new meaning to a family affair, as there are three common names throughout the credits of this film. And if you’d excuse me going for low-hanging fruit, but, ahem:
They're creepy and they're kooky,
Mysterious and spooky,
They're altogether ooky,
The Adams Family!
I’m definitely not the first person to do that, and surely won’t be the last. Hellbender is directed, written and featuring the core family of mother Toby Poser, daughter Zelda Adams and father John Adams – where Toby and Zelda play the two leads in the film, while John appears in a supporting role. As well, their other daughter Lulu Adams plays the supporting role of Amber and is involved in the song writing in the film, as well, for the in-band film H6llb6nd6r.
In horror thriller Don’t Say Its Name, outsiders are being killed by an unseen force in the woods in a Canadian Indigenous community. The town’s sheriff, Betty (Madison Walsh), can’t make heads or tails of it, so she enlists the help of badass game warden Stacey (Sera-Lys McArthur).
The film is an Indigenous story at its core, one about protecting one’s land as outsiders (a coal mining company called WEC) look to profit off their land. At the very least, Don’t Say Its Name is thought-provoking because of this. There’s strong character work here, especially with Betty and Stacey. Stacey’s an army vet suffering from PTSD, so her healing from trauma of war is an intriguing element on top of Indigenous people coping with their collective trauma.
She very much holds her own in the action scenes. The fight choreography is strong and (CGI) gore is always steady, with some strong sequences sprinkled throughout, especially a fun scene set in a graveyard. It’s also very well-shot, balancing hand-to-hand combat and gun action.
It doesn’t have the variety of chorography to sustain long, drawn-out fight scenes, so if you’re searching for great ones like seen in The Raid or even The Night Comes for Us (both Indonesia actioners), this one doesn’t have it. It underwhelms in certain areas because of that, especially as it doesn’t have a scene that I think will be remembered in a couple of years. However, it’s still a good showcase for MASUMI as a badass hero coming into her own, with some fun scenes to make it worth the two hours.
Featured image: Kevin Corrigan as Father Andrew and Thomas Jay Ryan as Father James in Scenes from an Empty Church. (Courtesy of MPI Media Group.) “New York is dead… It’s not dead, but it’s on life support,” narrates Father Andrew (Kevin Corrigan) to begin Onur Tukel’s newest film Scenes from an Empty Church. This is the usual [...]