Film School Spotlight: York University Retrospective
Throughout this program are multiple snippets of short films from throughout the years, such as a title where Kubla Khan starts up a television variety show and several involving arty dance routines. The first title played in its entirety is Plants out of the Sunlight, which features a mother, not entirely acclimated to Canadian living, working at a factory, when not trying to reach out to her distant, aloof son. Observing cultural barriers and some of the limitations of a land of opportunity, this title captures the anguish of isolation with surprising poise.
Hogtown Blues is slightly less engrossing, having something to do with familial bonds, as a woman tries to reconnect with her father. Of course, this is still more engaging than Fly, which uses squiggles and experimental animation imagery to explore calligraphy, or the flight of a fly, or something.
Documentary inclusion Benediction is somewhat more touching, using still images and recordings to remember a life lost. It's followed up nicely with the standout title of the collection, The School, where the death of plants and animals in an elementary school class leads to a collective premature existential crisis for a group of children. Impressively composed and chock full of witty, dry humour, this short is both the best of this program and one of the best of the fest.
ReviewsOct 29, 2014
The BabadookJennifer Kent
At every Toronto After Dark Fest, there's at least one film that rides a wave of palpable buzz and has attendees clamouring to see it. Last ...
ReviewsOct 24, 2014
Films about time travel are some of the trickiest ones to create as far as sci-fi subgenres are concerned — it's not so much about the...
ReviewsOct 23, 2014
Why Horror?Nicolas Kleiman, Rob Lindsay
As a nerd, it's always pretty weird seeing your favourite genre rise to the surface of mainstream culture, and horror is no exception. In hi...
ReviewsOct 22, 2014
Time LapseBradley King
You don't fuck with time. That's the philosophical takeaway - an idea espoused time and time again by one of the lead characters - in Bradle...
ReviewsOct 21, 2014
John Geddes' Hellmouth is a kaleidoscopic vision of hell that tantalizes with some bewitching visuals but ultimately comes off more as funho...
ReviewsOct 20, 2014
Kumiko, The Treasure HunterDavid Zellner
In 2001, a woman named Takako Konishi was found dead in a remote area of Minnesota. Botched eyewitness information swirled into an urban leg...
ReviewsOct 19, 2014
Man, I really wanted to like Zombeavers. Based on the trailer, which currently boasts over three million hits on YouTube, the film seemed li...
ReviewsOct 18, 2014
ABCs of Death 2Various Directors
When producers Ant Timpson and Tim League announced that they'd be producing a followup to 2012's highly ambitious anthology film The ABCs o...