TIFF20 REVIEW: The Water Man [2020]

I’m doing this for you. It’s starting to feel as though Gunner Boone’s (Lonnie Chavis) life is fitting to become a series of upheavals with no end in sight. First it was living with his mother (Rosario Dawson‘s Mary) while his father (David Oyelowo‘s Amos) was stationed in Japan with the Navy. Then it was moving to Pine Mills upon his return home to America. And now it’s adjusting to the reality that his mother is dying of cancer and his father hasn’t been able to thus far adjust to…

Read More

INTERVIEW: Keith Behrman, writer/director of Giant Little Ones

One of my favorite things about going to the Toronto International Film Festival is finding the time to see the smaller movies that aren’t on everyone’s must-see lists. While the gamble sometimes turns out to be a dud, the risk is easily justified when you’re able to discover a work as genuinely memorable as Keith Behrman‘s Giant Little Ones in the process. A film about adolescence that isn’t afraid to delve into sexuality’s ever-broadening landscape of experimentation and fluidity with still violent repercussions, this story of two best friends falling…

Read More

TIFF REVIEW: Giant Little Ones [2019]

Why did you tell her anything? Writer/director Keith Behrman knows exactly what he’s doing when introducing a variety of people along the sexuality spectrum in his latest film Giant Little Ones. He’s intentionally flooding his canvas so that we have no choice but to accept them all rather than turn our focus onto just one. There’s no room for token characters anymore, the real-life disparity between heterosexuals and homosexuals closing as each year passes. So Behrman looks to represent that change on the big screen by giving his lead (Josh…

Read More

REVIEW: Lights Out [2016]

“Are you doing this to help him or hurt her?” The story behind Lights Out is one many YouTubers aspire towards because it sees Swedish filmmaker David F. Sandberg evolve from three years of super short online scares to a seat beside contemporary Hollywood horror king James Wan. You could call his three-minute original from 2013 a “proof of concept” as it exists as the introduction of a monster seen only in the dark without any real context or story necessary. In fact, Sandberg’s feature debut pretty much recreates this…

Read More

REVIEW: Prisoners [2013]

“Pretty soon all that stands between you and being dead is you” The question is simple: How far would you go to save your child? The dynamics, however, are more complex when the man reconciling his soul to those ends is one who’s held God’s love as a beckon of security close to his heart. Denis Villeneuve’s Prisoners opens with Keller Dover (Hugh Jackman) saying an “Our Father” as his son Ralph (Dylan Minnette) readies to kill his first deer. The words have a calming effect, one that’s helped this…

Read More

REVIEW: The Company Men [2011]

“You know the worst part? The world didn’t stop.” Independent and television producer/writer John Wells makes his feature directorial debut with The Company Men, a film about three men coping with the recession, corporate downsizing, and how—for the upper crust of America—unemployment may just be harder work than having a job. The conceit is one that audiences can wrap their heads around, especially with so many having family, friends, co-workers, or perhaps themselves affected in much the same way. But despite this universal theme, the implementation can be a bit…

Read More