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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.

Home releases: What’s streaming your way in June

Kevin Costner cocks the starter pistol, Liam Neeson runs all night, John Travolta fakes it, Colin Firth pops his brolly and Will Ferrell and Kevin Hart Get Hard -- but it's Red Army's Fetisov who scores on DVD, Blu-ray and VOD, writes Katherine Monk By Katherine Monk McFarland (2015) 3.5/5 Starring: Kevin Costner, Maria Bello, Ramiro Rodriguez, Carlos Pratts, Johnny Ortiz, Morgan Saylor. Directed by Niki Caro. Running time:  129 minutes. Parental Guidance. In sports movies, cliché comes on the side – like coleslaw. You don’t ask for it, and you may not even like it, but there it is: a little white paper cup filled with shredded cabbage, a silent affirmation that you got what you paid for. The coleslaw in McFarland is the idea of the underdog competitor, in this case, a group of Latino high school students in southern California. Jim White (Kevin Costner) used to coach football at a school for privileged white kids, but after he loses his temper, he’s fired ...

Snow White and the seven emotions

Inside Out is the story of an 11-year-old girl's emotions. But almost 80 years ago, Disney had another movie that looked at feelings in a similar way     By Jay Stone   The near universal praise for the Pixar film Inside Out (98 per cent and counting on Rotten Tomatoes, and the demurrals seem pro forma) are partly due to the very audacity of the idea. This is an animated film about the emotions of an 11-year-old girl named Riley: how Joy, Fear, Anger, Disgust and Sadness work together — or sometimes at odds — to form a human personality in flux.   It arrives as a Disney film without a villain and without a princess (although, parenthetically, even the most mundane marketing department — and Disney’s is far from that — should find many opportunities for toys, dolls and other associated merchandise. One fully expects to see hordes of little Angers and Joys trooping to the house next Halloween.)   However, that’s the least of ...

Movie review: Being Canadian a trip of cliches

Documentary that examines myths about Canada ends up creating as many stereotypes as it tries to explode, writes Jay Stone

Movie review: Testament of Youth tells age-old truth

Alicia Vikander finds the fire-hardened spirit of noted pacifist Vera Brittain in a sentimental take on Testament of Youth, the bestselling classic about the endless tragedy of war      

Movie review: Inside Out a happy head trip

Disney Pixar takes a long walk down an infinite pier of personal identity in Inside Out, an animated tour of developmental psychology that captures the pain of growing up using primary colours and Amy Poehler's voice
3 1/2 Score

Movie review: Me and Earl and the Dying Girl is metamoving

This movie about a teenager with cancer is partly about movies about teenagers with cancer, writes Jay Stone

Movie review: Another Brilliant Young Mind

It's another film about a brilliant and troubled math genius looking for love — and it finds the same irrational number

Movie review: Jurassic World turns park dark

Director Colin Trevorrow tries to fill dinosaur-sized shoes with digital science and a bigger scope in his next-generation take on the $800-million Jurassic franchise  

Interview: Alfonso Gomez-Rejon found new life in death

The director of the Sundance standout Me and Earl and the Dying Girl says he made his first 'personal movie' and it changed him as a filmmaker, and as a man, writes Katherine Monk By Katherine Monk “When you suffer a deep loss, you can dive into it and hide – and I had suffered a deep loss,” says Alfonso Gomez-Rejon, the director of Me and Earl and the Dying Girl, opening in theatres this weekend but already one of the most buzzed-about movies of the year thanks to its double-barreled win at this year’s Sundance Film Festival. Gomez-Rejon says he needed to process the loss of his father, but he couldn’t do it head-on. He needed to get some distance, and he found it in the 2013 young adult novel written by Jesse Andrews dealing with two teens who befriend a classmate diagnosed with cancer. “I’d rather not talk about the personal side too much. But the film is dedicated to my father. It’s a private thing that I made public and I don’t regret it because we are ...

Movie review: Phoenix a post-Nazi drama of identity

German actress Nina Hoss gives a fascinating performance as a woman who returns from a death camp to find her true love — and her own persona, writes Jay Stone