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We don’t need no stinking’ category. Sometimes, writing doesn’t fit into a box.

2.5Score

Movie review: The Dressmaker just doesn’t fit

This eccentric comedy/drama features Kate Winslet as a fashion designer who returns to her Australian home town to learn about her past — only to find the charms of Liam Hemsworth

Bob Dylan don’t need Nobel, or stinking badge

Comment: On Bob Dylan, Nobel laureate Looking back on a close encounter of the Dylan kind reveals a slightly rumpled honouree who has a hard time accepting praise, let alone the Nobel Prize *Caution: This article contains a top-100 list of Bob Dylan songs. By Rod Mickleburgh In the winter of 1990, I waited with a handful of reporters and photographers in a grand salon of the Palais-Royal in Paris for Bob Dylan. More than 25 years ahead of the Nobel Prize people, the French had decided that Dylan’s lyrical prowess was worthy of the country’s highest cultural honour, Commandeur dans l’ Ordre des Arts et des Lettres. T.S. Eliot was one of the first to receive the award in 1960. Borges followed in 1962. And now, following in the footsteps of Sean Connery (1987), it was Bob’s turn. Finally, the gilded, ceiling-high white doors opened, and there he was, ambling into the opulent room, followed by France’s flamboyant minister of culture at the time, Jack Lang. He was ...

The Lioness doesn’t sleep tonight

The Daddy Diary: Part Six A first-time father faces the surreal and sometimes lonely experience of looking in from the outside with a tender heart full of slumber-inducing song By Chris Lackner "In the jungle, the mighty jungle, the lion sleeps tonight." Good for him. In my "jungle" — AKA house — there isn't much sleeping going on (especially for mom). Such is the life of newbie parents. Our little lioness has a mighty roar — mightiest after the sun goes down. Our girl’s hunger — and gas-fueled bellow — is only satiated by two things: breast milk and songs (with musical numbers finishing a distant, distant second). Our baby instinctively knows how to lay in wait and then pounce on her parental prey when we are at our most vulnerable. Is dad trying to watch the ninth-inning drama of a playoff race? Yup. Cue the crying. Are mom and dad trying for the 15th time that night to stream more than three minutes in a row of one TV episode? Yup. Cue our mighty ...

Ed Gass-Donnelly hides a message up his sleeve

#VIFF16: Interview with Ed Gass-Donnelly The Toronto-based director takes a pry bar to the basement door of family secrets in Lavender, a psychological thriller starring Abbie Cornish, Dermot Mulroney and Justin Long   By Katherine Monk VANCOUVER – The man who made The Last Exorcism Part II is marked. Ed Gass-Donnelly rolls up his right sleeve in the firelight, and reveals two words written in deep indigo capital letters: “Find Beauty.” “I’m not doing this to pay the bills,” says the Toronto-born director of Lavender, a psychological thriller unspooling at the Vancouver International Film Festival this week as part of the Altered States program. “I have to remind myself of that… after making [The Last Exorcism Part II] I think I found new perspective,” he says, sitting back in a leather couch at the Sutton Place lounge. “I appreciated the experience of coming out on 3000 screens. It was like ‘WOW!’ – 3000 screens at once is what you ...

Claude Joli-Coeur’s big plans for a better board

Movies: Interview with Claude Joli-Coeur National Film Board Chair reaffirms original vision of 'unity through diversity' with new gender parity policy but that's just the beginning of some bold moves, including a new brick and mortar headquarters in Montreal By Katherine Monk VANCOUVER –  “If the National Film Board were a person, how would you describe their identity?” Claude Joli-Coeur reflects for a second with a serious look hazing over his gentle features. Then, in an instant, a gleeful burst: “Leonard Cohen!” After serving at the board for 12 years, currently as Government Film Commissioner and Chairperson for the NFB, Joli-Coeur has spent a few all-nighters in the company of his current passion. He has the type of insight that only comes from intimacy. “The personality. The sparks. The surprise. The iconic… He grew up in Montreal and achieved world renown. He was open to different questions of identity…. Everything, eh?” For Joli-Coeur, a ...

Super Bowl: Vegetarian Curry Laksa

Food: Vegetarian Curry Laksa Recipe Whether it's pho, bibimbap or a bucket of ramen, a meal in a bowl offers a mysterious delight, and this recipe for Vegetarian Curry Laksa is a culinary treasure you can eat with a spoon By Louise Crosby There’s something appealing about a meal in a bowl, everything contained in one space, relaxed, easy eating. Think of the Vietnamese dish pho – fragrant broth, rice noodles, vegetables and herbs. Or Korean bibimbap – sizzling rice with meat and assorted vegetables, chili pepper paste and a raw or fried egg served on top. But wait, there’s much, much more. I just got my hands on Lukas Volger’s new (vegetarian) cookbook, simply titled Bowl, and realize that when it comes to this kind of eating, the possibilities are endless. I want to cook this entire collection but for starters settled on this Vegetarian Curry Laksa, laksa being a popular noodle dish sold at hawker stalls in Malaysia, Singapore and Indonesia. Although there are ...

Viggo meets psycho villain?

Welcome to my lair... This guy from the new Chevrolet commercials — the one who likes to play funny little tricks like pretending to put your phone in a wood chipper, and stopping the elevator, and forcing kids to watch someone else play a videogame: He’s creepy. And not just because he’s looking at every one of those “real people not actors” like they’re a guinea pig in his latest subterranean torture experiment, but because he's a weird pastiche of traits selected at some over-caffeinated marketing meeting where at least one person present had a beard. He’s got the hipster beard that gives him a Viggo Mortensen meets bartender cool, the ironed retro Western shirt (also hipster) and the deadpan self-righteousness of Denis Leary. And what's with the clipboard prop? That's for doctors. You can see why they wanted to get away from the clean-shaven white guy in a suit to reach the target market, but this Frankenstumper gives us the willies — and every time that giant ...

Mob Rule – The Bloodbath Begins

Mob Rule: Part One Gang wars are always brutal and bloody, but if you can't take the heat, you best get out of the place where they make the pasta. That's right, if you like your eggs hardboiled and your orange juice on the pulpy side, then John Armstrong's novel is right up your dark alley as he leads us on a continuing journey to the kingdom of Mob Rule. In this opening instalment, shots are fired, someone goes down and someone brushes off their Borsalino to live another day in the gritty city. “If Satan should ever replace God he would find it necessary to assume the attributes of Divinity.” -- Voltaire       By John Armstrong CHAPTER ONE I was already flat on the ground before I heard the bullets. We had just reached the bottom of the steps when Coriolano, my bodyguard, grabbed me by the shoulders and threw me to the sidewalk, then chips of concrete and stone were dancing in the air to the whine of ricochets and the silly sounding ...

Buvette meatballs reinvent the reliable orb

Forget all the references to Bill Murray and summer camp because thanks to Jody Williams' Buvette in NYC, meatballs are going upscale as part of the thoughtful food movement By Louise Crosby I was thinking the other day how much I love meatballs. Swedish meatballs in gravy served over egg noodles with lingonberry preserves. Middle Eastern meatballs of lamb, cumin and coriander, stuffed into a pita pocket with yogurt and cucumbers. Greek meatballs with feta, mint and lemon. Or regular Italian meatballs in tomato sauce, served over pasta with grated Parmigiano-Reggiano. You can take meatballs in so many directions.   Then along came Buvette, a beautiful first cookbook by Jody Williams, who owns and operates a gastrotheque by the same name in New York City’s West Village, a place she describes as a neighbourhood bar “with thoughtful food.” Her recipe for Italian meatballs in tomato sauce came from the grandmother of an unnamed “talented actor from the Soprano...

Spice up the last gasp of summer: Watermelon Gazpacho

Watermelon is a fruit that's also a vegetable, and ingredient that can be exploited for its watery sweetness as well as its ability to play savoury base to a spicy Watermelon Gazpacho By Louise Crosby Most of us can remember eating watermelon as kids – at picnics and barbecues and on waterfront docks. It was cold and sweet, a rite of summer. It didn’t matter if the juice dripped down our chins, all over our arms and onto our shirts, it was fun to eat and no one minded the mess. Fast forward to the other day when I visited my friend Amanda at her home in the woods bordering Gatineau Park, just across the river in Quebec. A great cook, she served me a delicious lunch in her screened-in porch that started with a bright, refreshing watermelon gazpacho, a Lucy Waverman recipe published in Food and Drink magazine.  Yes, there are more refined ways of reliving this childhood memory. Watermelon, by the way, is apparently both a fruit and a vegetable. It is considered a ...