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Jay Stone and Katherine Monk movie reviews and profiles. Movies new to streaming / DVD.
Reviews of Canadian movies and filmmaker profiles by Katherine Monk and Jay Stone.

Diamonds Are a Woman’s Friend

News: Birks Diamond Tribute to Women in Film It's not about square cut or pear-shaped, the Birks Diamond Tribute honours the unsung contributions of women in Canadian film, where the female sex is still grossly under-represented By Katherine Monk It started with a tribute to two actors in 2012: Emily Hampshire and Sarah Gadon. This year, the Birks Diamond Tribute will honour a full dozen women in Canadian film, including actors, directors and screenwriters. Slated for celebration at this year’s Toronto International Film Festival are directors Alethea Arnaquq-Baril, Ashley McKenzie, Catherine Bainbridge, Chloé Leriche, and Mina Shum; actors Amanda Brugel, Ellen Wong, Kawennáhere Devery Jacobs, Mylène Mackay, and Shailyn Pierre-Dixon; and screenwriters Joanne Arseneau and Sherry White. With a few exceptions, such as Vancouver’s Mina Shum (Double Happiness) and newcomer Ashley McKenzie (Werewolf), they are not household names — yet. The whole point of the Birks  ...
3.5Score

The Search for Self in a Selfie Generation

Movie Review: Ingrid Goes West Aubrey Plaza brings pathos, humour and cringe-worthy authenticity to Matt Spicer's movie about a young woman seeking personal validation from social media
2Score

A Moral Argument Reduced to Meh

Movie Review: The Hitman’s Bodyguard Ryan Reynolds and Samuel L. Jackson exchange character clichés in a lazy thriller that misses the mark, aiming for moral high ground under a stack of corpses  
3.5Score

Coogan and Brydon Trip the Food Fantastic

Movie review: The Trip to Spain The third instalment in Michael Winterbottom's accidental series offers a sustained exploration of male friendships, plus a razor sharp satire of Mick Jagger
4Score

A Ghost Story Wears a Sheet, and Still Sneaks Up On You

Movie Review: A Ghost Story This meditation on grief, loss and time is told in a simple but effective story in which the dead spirit is represented by a sheet with two eye holes
3.5Score

13 Minutes Resets Time-Bomb of Fascism

Movie Review: 13 Minutes Oliver Hirschbiegel returns to the land of the brown shirts to extract another timely lesson about the role of the individual in this detailed portrait of the man who nearly assassinated Adolf Hitler

William Oldroyd Finds Lady Macbeth’s Spot

Movies: Interview with Lady Macbeth director William Oldroyd Lady Macbeth is riding a wave of feminist revisionism that emerged with Margaret Atwood's The Penelopiad and crests with the forthcoming Ophelia, but director William Oldroyd says more women's stories should be told. Not just because they're full of drama. But female actors are available. They're better. They're also cheaper. By Katherine Monk In 1865, an author by the name of Nikolai Leskov picked up on something his contemporaries were doing. He revised Shakespearean drama for a Russian audience, playing with context but keeping the core of the character intact. Ivan Turgenev offered up Hamlet of the Shchigrovsky District in 1859, and Leskov published Lady Macbeth of the Mtsensk District — a bodice-ripping, bed-post gripping romance featuring a young woman in a loveless marriage. A century and a half later, we can see a similar trend emerging as filmmakers once more revamp Shakespeare, as well as other classics, ...
2Score

Dunkirk Doesn’t Work

Movie Review: Dunkirk Christopher Nolan's war movie about the 'miracle' at Dunkirk fights itself on the beaches, in the air and on the seas; it never surrenders a strand of storyline in its desire to go big.  

David Lowery Defeated Nihilism with A Ghost Story

People: Interview with David Lowery His art-house horror hybrid starring Casey Affleck and Rooney Mara is the biggest buzz title of the summer, but David Lowery says he's still figuring out what his movie about ghosts, secret notes and hidden meanings is all about. By Katherine Monk David Lowery has been talking about A Ghost Story since January, when it premiered at The Sundance Film Festival. But by year’s end, there’s a good chance everyone will be talking about this low-budget art-house-horror hybrid starring Rooney Mara, Casey Affleck and a ghost walking around under a sheet with two cut-out eyeholes. Yes, indeed, A Ghost Story is haunting. It wakes the ache that’s always there. Yet, in his bid to dig a little deeper into a single image of a ghost sitting in an empty house, Lowery successfully pulls a long sliver from the calloused sole of the Zeitgeist. He also made a few therapeutic discoveries of his own. The Ex-Press spoke to Lowery, the 36-year-old Texas-raised ...
4Score

Spider-Man: Homecoming Strips the Serious from Comicverse

Movie Review: Spider-Man - Homecoming Tom Holland and director Jon Watts prove there's still room for 'comic' in the comic book universe as they return to basics in the highly entertaining Spider-Man: Homecoming