Interview 26 results

Fellipe Barbosa Follows Dead Friend’s Footsteps on the Mountain

Interview: Fellipe Barbosa Gabriel and the Mountain tells the story of Gabriel Buchmann, a 28-year-old Fulbright scholar who perished on Mulanje Mountain in Malawi in 2009. Former classmate and Brazilian filmmaker Fellipe Barbosa says he didn't want to make an ode to his old friend, but an honest account of his beautiful contradictions. By Katherine Monk VANCOUVER, BC — Fellipe Barbosa’s first memory of Gabriel Buchmann was as a seven-year-old, studying at an all-boys Catholic school in Rio de Janeiro. “He was looking at me from a distance. He was very observant. He would study emotions. He was more shy, then.” Barbosa hesitates. “Eventually… I went to the U.S. to study film at the age of 19, and we lost touch.” They would never have the chance to reconnect in the flesh. Buchmann died of exposure climbing Mulanje Mountain in Malawi in 2009. His tragic death became a headline that captured the hearts and minds of Brazilians: A Fulbright Scholar heads to Africa in ...

Mike White Updates Status Consciousness

Movies: TIFF17 The writer-director of Brad's Status is an indie darling, but he says he still wrestles with insecurity and ego issues because we live in a world of false comparisons By Katherine Monk TORONTO — “I think you have your epiphany, and then you forget about it,” says Mike White. “Then you remember it again. And you forget it again. It’s like you are inching toward wisdom. Or circling the drain.” White seems to be doing all of the above, all the time, because his mind seems to radiate ideas. He creates tangent lines mid-sentence, leaving orbit, only to fall back to earth, chained by the full force of gravity. It’s his ability to levitate and fall with giddy aplomb that makes his voice so unique and his characters so memorable, whether it’s Selma Hayek as massage therapist and healer in Beatriz at Dinner, Laura Dern as a recovering executive experimenting with faith in Enlightened, or the entirely childlike Chuck, from the indie landmark Chuck & ...

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, ...

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 ...

Jay Baruchel on Goons, loons and Canadians’ saloon-speak

Interview: Jay Baruchel The veteran actor and star of How to Train Your Dragon makes his directorial debut with Goon 2: Last of the Enforcers, but the closet poet says his movie is about more than small-town hockey, it's about the very heart and expletive-laden soul of the Canadian identity By Katherine Monk VANCOUVER, BC — Jay Baruchel emerges from the elegantly muted, sand coloured hallway with the urgency and focus of a grey squirrel gathering mid-winter nuts. He’s on a mission and if it means tipping over a garbage can or two, traversing a frozen road from an overhead transmission wire or even fluffing up his tale for a confrontation with the unsuspecting public — he’s ready. The Canadian actor known for playing Hiccup in How to Train Your Dragon, as well as earning a place alongside Tom Cruise as one of the bawdy pranksters in Tropic Thunder, recently directed his first feature, Goon 2: Last of the Enforcers. He says it was the achievement of a life-long ...

John Madden hits home with Miss Sloan

Interview: John Madden on Miss Sloane The director of Shakespeare in Love says casting Jessica Chastain as a shrewd, morally ambiguous D.C. lobbyist was the best way to expose the ugliness of modern politics   By Katherine Monk WHISTLER, BC – John Madden doesn’t want to get bogged down by the F-word: Feminism has so much ancillary luggage, too many awkward hard edges to cram into the narrative anchovy tin called a feature film. Yet, Miss Sloane, the latest film from the Academy Award-nominated director of Shakespeare in Love points a laser beam at the modern female experience. A D.C.-set (Toronto-shot) thriller starring Jessica Chastain as the title character, Miss Sloane offers a close-up view of the lobbyist’s reality. Watching from a slightly distanced perspective, the viewer picks up the trail of professional lobbyist Elizabeth Sloane just as she embarks on a career move that will change her life forever. Madden was reluctant to give away too many details ...

Life, death and Andrew Huculiak

People: Interview with Andrew Huculiak Getting metaphysical with the first-time director of Violent means dipping a big toe into the cold, dark waters of existentialism and cozying up with Kierkegaard By Katherine Monk (October 19, 2016) VANCOUVER – A gentle drizzle falls outside, and the faint smell of woolly dampness mingles with the scent of fresh pie. It’s a typical fall day in Vancouver -- wet, dark, and cool -- the perfect backdrop for an interview with Andrew Huculiak. Huculiak is the director behind Violent, easily one of the best first features in Canadian film history, but up until now, it was also one of the most difficult to access. Shot two years ago in Norway with a unilingual Norwegian cast, Violent was invited to Cannes, picked up top prizes at The Vancouver International Film Festival and was shortlisted as Canada’s best foreign film Oscar submission. By all accounts and measures, it should have hit theatres nationwide. Yet, it’s only now, two ...

New CBC sitcom exposes The Convenience Truth

People: Interview with Andrea Bang The Vancouver star of Kim's Convenience says the first Canadian sitcom to feature Asian leads is about transcending ethnic stereotypes through human universals   By Katherine Monk VANCOUVER – Andrea Bang thanks the Toronto Blue Jays. Not only did the team win the required games to advance, they pushed back the network premiere of her new show, Kim’s Convenience. The new CBC comedy based on Ins Choi’s award-winning Fringe play airs tonight on the National Broadcaster, but it was originally slated to air last Tuesday – in the heat of the Blue Jays’ wildcard bid. The network wisely aired the ballgame instead, but Bang wasn’t depressed about the delay. It gave her another week to mentally prepare while promos whetted the public appetite for a family comedy set in a Toronto convenience store. “You don't want to compete with the Toronto Blue Jays,” says Bang, sitting down for a chat on a rainy day in Vancouver. “I ...

Nikolaj Coster-Waldau shuns royal treatment

Interview: Susanne Bier and Nikolaj Coster-Waldau get A Second Chance He sports prosthetic golden fingers to play the role of Jaime Lannister on Game of Thrones, but Nikolaj Coster-Waldau hates getting a fake hand for any performance, which is why he's grateful for the firm grip of fellow Dane Susanne Bier By Katherine Monk TORONTO—In the opening episode of Game of Thrones, his character pushed a young boy from a window without a hint of remorse. But put a fussy newborn in Nikolaj Coster-Waldau’s arms, and the handsome Dane turns into a human pacifier. “It didn’t matter what the babies were doing… if Nikolaj picked them up, they would almost immediately fall asleep,” says director Susanne Bier, referring to the off-camera vibe on her latest film, A Second Chance (En chance til). A relatively small Danish-language drama about a police officer who makes a life-altering decision with good intentions, A Second Chance has been making a slow pass through North American ...

Michael Joplin remembers a happy Janis

Interview: Michael Joplin Though Janis Joplin's surviving siblings don't occupy huge amounts of screen time, Michael and Laura Joplin's presence brings a new dimension to Amy Berg's new documentary, Janis: Little Girl Blue, premiering tonight on PBS