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GiveLife.ca

    
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PRINT EDITION
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Globe Columnists
Tuesday, December 18




  Johanna Schneller
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The Moviegoer



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Let the son shine space
In the movie Ben Is Back, filmmaker Peter Hedges and actor Lucas dispel the old wisdom that directors shouldn't cast their children
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Saturday, December 15, 2018 – Page R5
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-- Peter Hedges, the writer/director, chokes up as he tells me this story about his son Lucas Hedges, the actor.It was Day 3 on the set of Ben Is Back, a film Peter wrote and was directing. Lucas - who earned an Oscar nomination for Manchester by the Sea and appeared in two of last year's best-picture nominees, Lady Bird and Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri - was playing the title character, a recovering addict who leaves rehab to come home for Christmas. Julia Roberts was playing Ben's mom, Holly, worn down by Ben's relapses but determined to be optimistic.  FULL STORY arrow
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BEN IS BACK space
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Friday, December 14, 2018 – Page A17
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-- CLASSIFICATION: 14A; 103 MINUTES Written and directed by Peter Hedges Starring Julia Roberts, Lucas Hedges and Courtney B. Vance 3 1/2 STARSRight out of the gate, it was obvious that Lucas Hedges, now 22, is the real deal, one of those actors who convey an inner life, seemingly without effort. When his characters are angry, their shame and vulnerability are visible, too; when they're happy, a sadness still flickers under the surface. He's fascinating.  FULL STORY arrow
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Why the silver screen is finally living up to its name space
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Saturday, December 8, 2018 – Page R1
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-- For years, it's driven me crazy how movies and television series depicted people over 60. Often, the characters were dying, which was either grim (Amour, Iris) or patronizingly fantastical (Cocoon). If they showed signs of life, they were reckless or desperate (Going in Style, The Bucket List, The Cool Kids). They were prudish about sex (Hope Springs, Book Club). Or, if they were still sexual, it was played for hooting laughter (The Golden Girls, Hot in Cleveland, It's Complicated). There were three choices: grey (Grey Gardens), golden (On Golden Pond) or grumpy (Grumpy Old Men).  FULL STORY arrow
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A wide net in the post-Weinstein era space
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Friday, November 23, 2018 – Page A17
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-- The Reckoning: Hollywood's Worst-Kept SecretCLASSIFICATION: N/A; 90 MINUTESDirected by Barry Avrich 3In October, 2017, as the Harvey Weinstein sexualassault scandal was breaking, and powerful men were imploding like condemned buildings (Charlie Rose, Matt Lauer, Kevin Spacey, Louis C.K.), Toronto-based director Barry Avrich (The Last Mogul) hastened to capture the cultural moment. He cast a wide net, filming interviews with journalists (Ken Auletta from The New Yorker, Kim Masters from The Hollywood Reporter, Margaret Wente from The Globe and Mail), ex-Weinstein employees and actors who have made accusations. Not the powerful ones, such as Uma Thurman or Gwyneth Paltrow; he went for lesser-known, less protected subjects, the women who had everything to lose.  FULL STORY arrow
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Jason Reitman has a few questions, thank you space
Writer/director behind The Front Runner relishes in the film's ambiguous lessons
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Saturday, November 17, 2018 – Page R9
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-- To me, one of the most alarming things about politics right now is the disconnect we feel from our fellow citizens: You want quality x in a politician? Really? You admire quality y, but loathe z? You care deeply about this issue, but not at all about that one? We don't just disagree - we're appalled.  FULL STORY arrow
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A testament to the power of journalism space
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Friday, November 16, 2018 – Page A18
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-- A Private WarCLASSIFICATION 18A; 110 MINUTESDirected by Matthew Heineman Written by Marie Brenner and Arash Amel Starring Rosamund Pike L isten, at this moment in the culture wars, I'd give this film three stars just for existing, because it's a powerful but clear-eyed acknowledgment of the importance of journalism.  FULL STORY arrow
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Matthew Heineman's private war against propaganda space
Director's feature debut tells the true story of a war journalist who risked - and ultimately lost - her life
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Thursday, November 15, 2018 – Page A14
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-- When he was 21, well before he became a director, Matthew Heineman went to a lecture by the legendary documentarian Albert Maysles (Gimme Shelter, Grey Gardens).''Maysles said, ''If you end up with the story you started with, then you're not listening along the way,' '' Heineman recalled in a phone conversation last week.  FULL STORY arrow
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Fede Alvarez spins Lisbeth Salander's spiderweb space
Uruguayan filmmaker is delighted that his actors don't enjoy working with him and thrives with tension on set
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Friday, November 9, 2018 – Page A20
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-- Claire Foy did not have fun playing Lisbeth Salander in the new film The Girl in the Spider's Web: A New Dragon Tattoo Story, according to her director, Fede Alvarez. And Alvarez is chuffed about that.  FULL STORY arrow
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The near-perfect drama you might not be expecting space
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Friday, October 26, 2018 – Page A17
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-- REVIEW What They HadCLASSIFICATION: 14A; 101 MINUTES Written and directed by Elizabeth Chomko Starring Hilary Swank, Michael Shannon and Blythe Danner3 1/2You may feel as if you've seen this movie before: Ruth (Blythe Danner) has Alzheimer's, her husband, Burt (Robert Forster), is in denial and their grown children Nick and Bridget (Michael Shannon and Hilary Swank) are at odds. But please, trust me, you haven't, because What They Had, the debut of writer/ director Elizabeth Chomko, is not about an issue.  FULL STORY arrow
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The operatic career of Julianne Moore space
Hollywood actor portrays a widely renowned soprano in Paul Weitz's drama, Bel Canto
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Thursday, October 25, 2018 – Page A14
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-- Before her new film, Bel Canto, came along, Julianne Moore wasn't exactly an opera fan. She'd attended precisely one, The Magic Flute, when she was 21. ''And I left halfway through,'' she said last week from her home in New York's Greenwich Village, ''to go make out with my boyfriend.'' Peals of laughter ring down the phone.  FULL STORY arrow
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The movie that Elizabeth Chomko just had to make space
Director discusses overcoming a lack of confidence and stereotypes about women's cinema to create What They Had, a story only she could tell
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Saturday, October 20, 2018 – Page R8
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-- A few years ago, Elizabeth Chomko was at her grandfather's funeral in Oak Park, Ill. A playwright, theatre actor and TV day player (The Mentalist, CSI), Chomko was listening to a swoony eulogy about her grandparents' love story when ''the most profound'' inner voice spoke to her: ''Well, someone has to make this movie.''  FULL STORY arrow
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'The most creative time' in Kathryn Hahn's life space
At 45 and with two children, the actor wants to send a message loud and clear: She's never been more artistically fulfilled
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Saturday, October 13, 2018 – Page R8
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-- Kathryn Hahn likes her characters messy. ''I love meeting someone in a moment of tension, of discovery in herself,'' the actor, 45, says by phone from Los Feliz, the Los Angeles neighbourhood where she lives with her husband of 16 years, actor Ethan Sandler; their two children; plus two dogs, a rabbit and a hamster. ''I love when you're not sure if someone is going to burst into hysterical tears or hysterical laughter.  FULL STORY arrow
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'You have to use extreme restraint' space
Director Paul Greengrass looks to neither sanitize nor make entertaining the violence of the Norwegian terror attack depicted in 22 July
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Saturday, October 6, 2018 – Page R7
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-- How do you create screen violence that isn't entertaining? That was the challenge the English writer-director Paul Greengrass faced with his latest film, 22 July. As the director of The Bourne Supremacy, The Bourne Ultimatum and Jason Bourne, Greengrass, 63, has crafted some of the most exciting action scenes out there - a spectacular fight in Supremacy comes to mind, where Matt Damon chokes a rival assassin with a rolled-up magazine.  FULL STORY arrow
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'The most creative time' in Kathryn Hahn's life space
At 45 and with two children, the actor wants to send a message that she's never been more artistically fulfilled
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Friday, October 5, 2018 – Page A17
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-- Kathryn Hahn likes her characters messy. ''I love meeting someone in a moment of tension, of discovery in herself,'' the actor, 45, says by phone from Los Feliz, the Los Angeles neighbourhood where she lives with her husband of 16 years, actor Ethan Sandler; their two children; plus two dogs, a rabbit and a hamster. ''I love when you're not sure if someone is going to burst into hysterical tears or hysterical laughter.  FULL STORY arrow
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Putting oneself first: still a revolutionary act for women space
In The Wife, Glenn Close stars as a writer struggling with both self-deprecation and balancing her own needs with the wants of others
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Friday, September 21, 2018 – Page A15
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-- M y first job, in 1984, was assistant to the editor of GQ, Art Cooper. Cooper's wife, Amy Levin, was the editor of Mademoiselle (now defunct).I wrote pieces for both magazines, and there was one story Levin really wanted me to do: how women tend to minimize their achievements, especially if their partner works in the same field.  FULL STORY arrow
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'You can only crack once' and other rules for on-screen tears space
The decision to cry or not to cry heavily affects the impact of an actor's performance
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Friday, September 14, 2018 – Page A16
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-- Emma Thompson knows when to cry. Think of how she saves her tears in Sense and Sensibility for the very end, when her emotional dam bursts with a sob. Recall how she dashes to her bedroom to cry in Love, Actually: She lets go a couple of tears, fights them back, gives her bedspread a tug to straighten it (that always gets me), and heads back out with a smile. In her new drama, The Children Act - written by Ian McEwan, based on his novel, and directed by Richard Eyre - Thompson plays Fiona Maye, a family High Court judge who remains dry-eyed in the face of horrific human dilemmas; it's shame at her own weakness that finally makes her crack.  FULL STORY arrow
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Waiting for Tanaya Beatty's perfect world space
Star of Through Black Spruce yearns for a day when Indigenous actors and leaders are more commonplace in film - and she's making strides toward that goal
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Saturday, September 1, 2018 – Page R3
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-- At the age of 5, Tanaya Beatty had one line in a play called The Day the Moonfolk Landed: ''What is that spaceship over there?'' But it was enough; she was hooked. At 20, she moved from Midway, a remote mountain village in B.C. (population: 500), to Vancouver, where she took the acting program at the Vancouver Film School. Her first break was a big one: She played Taylor Lautner's sister in 2011's The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn - Part 1. (She never got to transform into a werewolf, but she ran with the pack.) She got an agent.  FULL STORY arrow
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Surf Svengali proves a skillful storyteller as well space
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Friday, August 24, 2018 – Page A14
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-- Breath CLASSIFICATION: 14A; 115 MINUTESDirected by Simon Baker Written by Simon Baker, Tim Winton and Gerard Lee Starring Samson Coulter, Elizabeth Debicki, Ben Spence and Simon BakerIf you've ever wondered if surfers are afraid of the massive, roaring waves they ride, this Australian coming-of-age film - the feature directorial debut of Simon Baker, star of The Mentalist - gives you the answer: a resounding yes. But it also makes you feel why they love it.  FULL STORY arrow
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Serving up feminism in an unlikely place space
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Friday, August 24, 2018 – Page A14
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-- Support the Girls CLASSIFICATION: 14A; 90 MINUTESWritten and directed by Andrew Bujalski Starring Regina Hall and James Le GrosStealth feminism in a sexist sports bar. It's a typical day at work for Lisa (Regina Hall), the manager of Double Whammies, a Hooters wanna-be. One waitress brings a sick kid to work; another is training new recruits (''See how I open my mouth real wide when I laugh?'' she instructs); the cable TV goes dark; and the owner (James Le Gros) stops by to make things worse.  FULL STORY arrow
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The prodigious output of Linwood Barclay space
Novelist has been pounding away at the keys ever since he got his first typewriter at 10
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Thursday, August 16, 2018 – Page A13
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-- L inwood Barclay has written 22 crime/thriller novels in 15 years; he's sold millions of copies worldwide and has been blurbed by his hero, Stephen King. But at the age of 15, ''All I wanted to do in life was write screenplays,'' Barclay, 63, admitted over coffee in Toronto last week. ''I'd like to tell people I was inspired to write by Hemingway and Dickens, but it was TV.''  FULL STORY arrow
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A re-education in self-love and self-loathing space
The Miseducation of Cameron Post exorcises its director's teenage demons
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Friday, August 10, 2018 – Page A14
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-- Don't be fooled by the new film The Miseducation of Cameron Post. On the surface, it might seem like a drama about a gay teenager (Chloe Grace Moretz) in 1993 who undergoes enforced conversion therapy at a religious camp called God's Promise. But at heart, its co-writer and director Desiree Akhavan said in a phone interview this week, it's a John Hughes movie.  FULL STORY arrow
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Rob Reiner tells a timely tale in Shock and Awe space
The actor and filmmaker talks about his new film, his political ties and frustrations with the ethos of America
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Monday, July 30, 2018 – Page A15
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-- I have a deep and abiding love for Rob Reiner. I adore his showbiz-family ties - his father, Carl Reiner; his ex-wife, Penny Marshall; and his ex-brotherin-law, Garry Marshall, are part of the smart-shaggy Hollywood I first fell in love with. Watching Reiner's character on All in the Family, Michael Stivic, articulate his political positions during the 1970s helped form my own. I admire the way he's dug into politics throughout his life (more on that in a minute). He's my favourite kind of actor - the Gene Hackman school, totally naturalistic. And I challenge you to find a director whose run of films provided more pleasure to more people than his, from 1984 to 1992: This is Spinal Tap, Stand by Me, The Princess Bride, When Harry Met Sally..., Misery, A Few Good Men.  FULL STORY arrow
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Sandra Oh is killing it space
Emmy-nominated star of Killing Eve speaks with Johanna Schneller about the show's rich relationships and what she describes as its 'crackling, unpredictable nature'
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Saturday, July 21, 2018 – Page R1
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-- Once upon a time, I had crushes on male pop stars. Now I feel mad, florid love for brilliant women. Men still fascinate me, but I've heard their stories. I want to sit next to women at dinner parties; it's Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie and Patricia Rozema, Amma Asante and Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Emma Thompson and Hannah Gadsby who thrill me, because they connect me to what I think is important. I picture them at work. I fantasize about what they'd be like as friends.  FULL STORY arrow
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INSIDE THE FILTHY WORLD OF JOHN WATERS space
With a new book on the horizon, the pencil-stached Pope of Trash talks about how he spends his days now, what he thinks of modern America and the deeper beliefs that keep his ears open to others
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Thursday, July 12, 2018 – Page A12
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-- Last weekend, writer and filmmaker John Waters saw the documentary Won't You Be My Neighbor?, and there's something fitting about that. At 72, the self-proclaimed Pope of Trash has morphed into the Mr. Rogers of Raw, the kindly uncle of the outre. As he acknowledged in a 2015 commencement address to the Rhode Island School of Design that went viral, the culture has caught up with him. His biggest hit, Hairspray, is now a sweet high-school musical. These days, the kids are teaching him - about everything from ''theybies'' (children whose parents decline to assign a gender to their newborns) to ''blouses'' (a sexual designation meaning a feminine gay man who considers himself the top) - and he's giddy to learn.  FULL STORY arrow
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At home in Italy space
The secret to a successful multigenerational family holiday, writes Johanna Schneller, is to pick a place you never have to leave
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Saturday, July 7, 2018 – Page P12
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-- Day 1 does not start out well.Three generations of my family have rented a villa in Tuscany for two weeks. From Boca Raton, Fla., comes my eightysomething mother, Joanne, and her boyfriend, Bob, a full 10 years older. From Los Angeles, my sister, Anne, and her husband, Mark, adventuresome lawyers in their mid-40s. From northern Virginia, my brother's two sons, Zach and Noah, in their mid-20s. And from Toronto, my husband, Ian, my daughter, Hayley (also early 20s) and me. We arrive with six tonnes of luggage and a full complement of contradictory hopes, follies and neuroses, all crammed into an enormous white standard-shift Fiat van, ''the only nine-person vehicle in Italy,'' the rental agent tells us, clearly appalled.  FULL STORY arrow
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Make America great again, and again space
Any deeper meaning or relevance in this action-horror prequel is merely hinted at, rather than made the most of
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Friday, July 6, 2018 – Page A14
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-- The First PurgeCLASSIFICATION: 18A; 97 MINUTESDirected by Gerard McMurray Written by James DeMonaco Starring Marissa Tomei, Y'lan Noel and Lex Scott Davis 2I can't believe I'm typing this, but inside The First Purge is a scrappy little indie fighting to come out. Although this is the fourth instalment in the Purge franchise, it's a prequel to the other three, a chance to be born anew.  FULL STORY arrow
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For television creators, is time really up? space
More showrunners and producers are women and minorities, but ... there is a long way to go
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Tuesday, July 3, 2018 – Page A13
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-- There's a hashtag going around social media, a thinly veiled challenge: #ShowUsYourRoom. It's photos of the staff in television writers' rooms and it provides visual evidence of what has and hasn't changed in the immediate aftermath of the #TimesUp movement. Are there more women and people of diversity? Yes - but we're seeing the rooms that participated. What about the rooms that didn't?  FULL STORY arrow
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Scenes from a Canadian's journey through show business space
It's tough not to read the story of television writer, and now film director, Rebecca Addelman like an indie film of its own
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Friday, June 22, 2018 – Page A17
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-- Rebecca Addelman's life sounds so much like an indie-film heroine's, I picture her story in scenes.EXTERIOR, MULHOLLAND DRIVE (lonely road high above Los Angeles) -- 3 A.M.  FULL STORY arrow
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Larysa Kondracki put women first while filming new miniseries space
The Canadian director of Picnic at Hanging Rock added two more innovations on set: A strict no-jerks policy and wine bribes
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Tuesday, June 19, 2018 – Page A15
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-- At the beginning of the three-month shoot for her new miniseries Picnic at Hanging Rock, in the environs of Melbourne and the wilds of Victoria, Australia, the Canadian director Larysa Kondracki thought to herself, ''Okay, we're a group of people locked up on the other end of the world, talking about teenage hysteria. This could go one way or the other.''  FULL STORY arrow
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Julianna Margulies on the #MeToo reckoning space
The actor, who plays the narcissistic villain in AMC's new Dietland, says women are finally being heard
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Tuesday, June 12, 2018 – Page A18
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-- Last October, when the Harvey Weinstein scandal broke in The New York Times, Julianna Margulies was in a wardrobe fitting for her new, 10-episode AMC series, Dietland.Talk about fitting. Dietland - created by Marti Noxon (UnREAL, To the Bone), and based on the 2015 novel by Sarai Walker - is set in a parallel present where women have had it. Its heroine, Plum Kettle (Joy Nash), who answers letters at a teen magazine called Daisy Chain, is sick of being fat-shamed, especially by herself. She's recruited by an underground female-empowerment group, Calliope House, while at the same time, a vigilante collective known as Jennifer is exacting revenge on abusive men. (One, a fashion photographer who drugged and sexually assaulted 31 women and girls, bears a striking resemblance to real-life alleged abuser Terry Richardson.)  FULL STORY arrow
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At 65, Steenburgen has more doors to open space
The Oscar-winner talks about her breakthrough experience with Jack Nicholson, what she finds sexy and her refusal to fade out
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Friday, May 25, 2018 – Page A18
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-- It was sometimes hard to drag Mary Steenburgen out of the garage that served as a green room on the set of her new comedy Book Club, because she and her three co-stars - Candice Bergen, Jane Fonda and Diane Keaton - were dishing up such riveting dirt.  FULL STORY arrow
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Saving her sorries space
Kathy Griffin is defiant of those who want to 'decimate her' and is using her Trump photo controversy to fuel her comedy
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Saturday, May 19, 2018 – Page R10
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-- The day Kathy Griffin's severed-Trump-head photo hit the fan, May 30, 2017, the sharp-edged comedian was at home in Los Angeles, sobbing.(You know the photo and video, right? Griffin wears a purple dress and a lot of eyelashes.  FULL STORY arrow
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Barry Avrich on what he knew, when, about Weinstein space
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Friday, April 27, 2018 – Page A17
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-- Barry Avrich, the Montrealborn filmmaker, walked away from his 2011 documentary Unauthorized: The Harvey Weinstein Project ''a little haunted'' by what his film didn't say about the infamous mogul.  FULL STORY arrow
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'If you do this, it will help people heal' space
The director and stars of Indian Horse discuss their personal connections to the confrontation with Canada's dark past
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Saturday, April 14, 2018 – Page R10
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-- The question had to be asked.Over the phone, the Montreal-born director Stephen Campanelli is relaxed, friendly, eager to communicate. He read Richard Wagamese's acclaimed novel Indian Horse, he tells me, followed by Dennis Foon's film script, and was electrified by them. As a Canadian, he was angered and embarrassed that he hadn't been taught the history behind the story: Indigenous children ripped from their families, forced into residential schools and physically and sexually abused.  FULL STORY arrow
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Finding Your Feet does no such thing space
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Friday, April 13, 2018 – Page A17
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-- Finding Your FeetCLASSIFICATION PG; 109 MINUTESDirected by Richard LoncraineWritten by Meg Leonard and Nick MoorcroftStarring Timothy Spall and Imelda Staunton2 starsOh dear. This is one of those British light entertainments that pop up every few years, jam-packed with thespians having a jolly time making something commercial for the simple folk. Snooty Sandra (Imelda Staunton) lives for and through her titled hubby.  FULL STORY arrow
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Imelda Staunton finds her feet space
The British actor talks about aging, her career and taking a step back
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Thursday, April 12, 2018 – Page A15
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-- For the past six years, Imelda Staunton has had either a script or a score running through her head. In London's West End, she played Mrs. Lovett in Sweeney Todd and won a best actress Olivier Award for it. She played Mama Rose in Gypsy and won another Olivier. She played Margie in Good People, Martha in Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf? and Sally in Follies, and was nominated for Oliviers for those, too. During that same period, she appeared in two telefilms - including The Girl, which earned her an Emmy nomination - and five features. The most recent, Finding Your Feet, opens in Canada on Friday.  FULL STORY arrow
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The quiet success of John Krasinski space
The American darling's new horror film lets him go down the scary path - as actor, director, husband and father
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Saturday, April 7, 2018 – Page R4
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-- we really must thank John Krasinski's mom, Mary Claire, nee Doyle. For giving birth to John, yes, but also for this: After he graduated from Brown University, he attended the Eugene O'Neill National Theater Institute in Waterford, Conn.  FULL STORY arrow
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A QUIET PLACE space
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Friday, April 6, 2018 – Page A14
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-- CLASSIFICATION PG; 90 MINUTESDirected by John Krasinski Written by Scott Beck, Bryan Woods, and John Krasinski Starring Emily Blunt and John Krasinski31/2You're so tense you're almost nauseous, but it's fun - that's the place this smart new thriller will put you in. In the near future, an adorable family led by Emily Blunt, John Krasinski and Millicent Simmonds (so lovely in Wonderstruck) tiptoe through a deserted town. We soon learn why: Aliens who hunt by sound have decimated Earth. Only the silent survive. As Krasinski, who also co-wrote the script with Scott Beck and Bryan Woods, drills down into the details of how the family stays muffled, lovely things rise up: the sounds of wind and water, how much people say with their eyes, the power of communication and the keenness of its loss.  FULL STORY arrow
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Jared Harris, the master of doomed men space
The actor eschews heroic roles for fully rounded characters, such as the lower-class, alcoholic naval officer he plays on The Terror
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Saturday, March 31, 2018 – Page R5
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-- FAME GAMEJared Harris has played his share of doomed men - Andy Warhol in I Shot Andy Warhol; Captain Mike in The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, who drives his tugboat into a German submarine; King George VI, whose gentle death sets in motion The Crown.  FULL STORY arrow
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The tao and glee of Nathan Fillion space
What makes the Canadian-born actor, appearing in three series this year, one of the most charming in Hollywood?
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Thursday, March 29, 2018 – Page A16
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-- If the actor Nathan Fillion decides to have a video on his tombstone (it's a thing), I know which clip he should use: His entrance as Jacques Snicket, brother of Lemony Snicket (Patrick Warburton), in Episode 2, Season 2 of Netflix's A Series of Unfortunate Events. (It lands March 30.)  FULL STORY arrow
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7 Days in Entebbe is more metaphor than movie space
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Friday, March 16, 2018 – Page A19
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-- 7 Days in EntebbeCLASSIFICATION PG; 107 MINUTESDirected by Jose Padilha Written by Gregory Burke Starring Rosamund Pike and Daniel Bruhl 21/2On June 27, 1976, on Air France Flight 139 en route from Tel Aviv to Paris, four hijackers from the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine - including two German revolutionaries - took guns out of their hand luggage and took over the aircraft, eventually touching down in Entebbe, Uganda. They herded 248 passengers and crew into a decrepit airport terminal and demanded that Israel release 53 Palestinian prisoners or they would begin killing hostages. But Israel didn't negotiate with terrorists, so the world watched as the countdown began.  FULL STORY arrow
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THE LEISURE SEEKER space
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Friday, March 16, 2018 – Page A18
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-- CLASSIFICATION 14A; 112 MINUTESDirected by Paolo Virzi Written by Stephen Amidon, Francesca Archibugi, Francesco Piccolo and Paolo Virzi Starring Donald Sutherland and Helen Mirren 2Helen Mirren and Donald Sutherland as a long-married couple - sign me up.  FULL STORY arrow
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Amma Asante talks shop on 'inclusion riders' and industry evolution space
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Monday, March 12, 2018 – Page A14
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-- With the final two words of her Oscar acceptance speech - ''inclusion rider'' - Frances McDormand set off a charge of optimism, that film casts and crews will become more diverse. But Amma Asante, the British writer/director (Belle, A United Kingdom), isn't sure she buys it.  FULL STORY arrow
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The one thing this year's Oscars require space
Hollywood is more than our dream factory, and after a culturerattling 2017, its biggest event can't be lightweight
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Saturday, March 3, 2018 – Page R1
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-- This year's Oscars better be political.After the #TimesUp consciousness-raising sessions that were the Golden Globes and the BAFTAs. After the thought-provoking, ''What is America?'' nature of the Grammys.  FULL STORY arrow
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Jennifer Podemski won't be silenced space
The actor reveals the hardships Indigenous performers still face, and why it's high time to hold the Canadian entertainment industry accountable
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Saturday, February 24, 2018 – Page R3
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-- Here's what it's like to be a successful Indigenous actor in Canada in 2018: Jennifer Podemski has a list of television and film roles stretching back to 1991, including Degrassi: The Next Generation, Take This Waltz and Dance Me Outside. She's produced documentary series (The Other Side) and awards galas (the annual Indspire Awards). She's travelled North America as a mentor and advocate for Indigenous issues.  FULL STORY arrow
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McMafia, where crime is supersized space
Author and journalist Misha Glenny talks international syndicates and the power of television
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Thursday, February 22, 2018 – Page A17
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-- For a man telling a terrifying tale, Misha Glenny is startlingly chill. During an interview in Toronto last week, Glenny (an author, BBC correspondent and Guardian journalist) walked me through the world of McMafia - both his 2008 non-fiction bestseller and the new eight-hour BBC/AMC drama series that's been spun from it, of which he's a producer.  FULL STORY arrow
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Laeta Kalogridis's second - and third, and fourth - life space
The showrunner and creator of Netflix's big-budget sci-fi series Altered Carbon is doing things her way - at last
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Saturday, February 10, 2018 – Page R9
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-- Laeta Kalogridis, the showrunner of the new science-fiction series Altered Carbon - one of Netflix's most expensive original series to date - wishes she knew why people think of science fiction as a male-oriented genre.  FULL STORY arrow
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Hall's fight for nuance in the #TimesUp era space
Actor struggles with the moral dilemma of working for Woody Allen as allegations of sexual assault linger
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Friday, February 9, 2018 – Page A18
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-- FAME GAMERebecca Hall has come to a conclusion about Woody Allen. It's just not the conclusion you might assume.The British stage and screen actress, 35, has worked with Allen on two of his films: her breakout role, Vicky Cristina Barcelona, and the upcoming A Rainy Day in New York.  FULL STORY arrow
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Friday, February 9, 2018 – Page A18
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-- PermissionCLASSIFICATION 14A; 98 MINUTESWritten and directed by Brian Crano Starring Rebecca Hall and Dan Stevens 21/2You kind of want to slap everybody in Permission, and that's kind of the point. It's a wry twist on the rom-com dilemma of what keeps the lovers apart: They've been together too long.  FULL STORY arrow
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Gloria Grahame: not as a stranger space
In Film Stars Don't Die in Liverpool, Annette Bening tackles the scandalous film noir starlet. Crazy casting? After sitting down with Bening, it makes a lot of sense
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Saturday, January 27, 2018 – Page R6
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-- When you first hear, ''Annette Bening is playing Gloria Grahame,'' you think, ''That's crazy talk.'' Grahame, who died at 57 in 1981, was one kind of actress: Her characters were too ready to say yes, too easy to nudge into misbehaving. In the role for which most of us know her, the flirty Violet in It's a Wonderful Life, she's the archetypal girl who can't help it, narrowly rescued from herself by George's decency.  FULL STORY arrow
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Birdland is less a gumshoe story, than it is a psychological portrait space
Peter Lynch's film delves into our capacity for denial and the unreliability of memory
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Thursday, January 25, 2018 – Page A15
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-- In what many would consider a shocking development, a renowned Canadian filmmaker approves of a Telefilm initiative.The filmmaker is Peter Lynch, 60, best known for the documentaries Project Grizzly (1996) and Cyberman (2001); his first full-length feature, Birdland, opens in select cities on Friday. The initiative is Telefilm's new Talent to Watch program, which will support 50 films a year at $120,000 (maximum) apiece, and will automatically green-light the second projects of filmmakers whose first features play top-tier festivals, contributing $500,000 per film.  FULL STORY arrow
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A Canadian invasion at Sundance space
Homegrown studio BRON is the name to watch this season, following up a prolific few years with four new films at the festival
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Saturday, January 13, 2018 – Page R5
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-- Last year, the Sundance Film Festival dropped a surprise title into their Tuesday night lineup: Get Out. It was received rapturously, became an instant cultural touchstone and is arguably the most important film of 2017.  FULL STORY arrow
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The beauty and grief of Diane Kruger space
The German-born actress explores territory both new and all-too familiar in a Cannes-winning performance she couldn't shake
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Saturday, January 13, 2018 – Page R8
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-- In 2012, when the German-Turkish writer/director Fatih Akin (The Edge of Heaven) began working on the screenplay for his new drama In the Fade, terrorists were wreaking havoc around the world: South America, Africa, Russia, Afghanistan, Pakistan.  FULL STORY arrow
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Donald Sutherland has no time for Donald Sutherland's movies, thank you space
The Canadian treasure, soon to be an Academy Honorary Award recipient, waxes mystical about acting, aging and what comes after
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Friday, January 12, 2018 – Page A14
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-- Donald Sutherland won't be seeing his new film, The Leisure Seeker. He sees very few of his films. His characters don't want him to.''I can watch myself in the rushes, because that's part of a process,'' he said last September, in a hotel-room interview during the Toronto International Film Festival. ''But the character is alive inside me.'' Even after the movie is finished, ''he's not dead yet. So when the editor moves him around - when he's got his arm up by his ear or his hand in his rear end - it's not who he is.  FULL STORY arrow
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Annnnnnnd ... scene space
The seven best cinematic moments of 2017, a year spent in the dark (in more ways than one)
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Friday, December 22, 2017 – Page A17
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-- As I was thinking back on my seven favourite film scenes of 2017, I was surprised to see how many of them are about kindness. But on second thought, it's not surprising at all. Because if this past year has shown us anything, it's that life without kindness is ugliness, and that kindness is hope.  FULL STORY arrow
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Errol Morris vs. fake news space
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Friday, December 15, 2017 – Page A16
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-- In 1975, this story caused a sensation: Frank Olson, a CIA scientist, had not committed suicide on Nov. 28, 1953, as his family had thought. Instead, he was crazed from the effects of a secret dose of LSD that a fellow CIA agent had slipped into his drink nine days before his death.  FULL STORY arrow
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Richard Jenkins's quiet, brilliant desperation space
As the chatty neighbour in del Toro's latest film, the actor once again highlights his intelligence and versatility
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Friday, December 8, 2017 – Page A20
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-- FAME GAMERichard Jenkins wasn't expecting Sally Hawkins to slap him. In their new film, The Shape of Water (opening in Toronto on Friday), Hawkins plays Elisa, a mute cleaning woman at a secret aerospace lab in 1960s Baltimore, and Jenkins is Giles, her chatty neighbour, a commercial artist, gay but in the closet. Giles thinks he's Elisa's mentor but, like everyone else, he underestimates her. A mysterious creature is chained in the lab's depths, Eliza needs to free him and, in an emotional scene, she implores Giles to help her.  FULL STORY arrow
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How to throw a post-Weinstein Oscars space
Hollywood can atone for the indecency that's come to light in recent months by making smart choices about which films and filmmakers get trophies
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Friday, December 1, 2017 – Page A19
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-- If the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences wants to have a politically correct Oscars ceremony on March 4, they have their work cut out for them. There are so many powder kegs waiting to be ignited: the sexual harassment issue, the lack of diversity issue, the we-hate-our-President issue.  FULL STORY arrow
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What women want space
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Friday, November 24, 2017 – Page R1
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-- We never thought the revolution would come in this manner. But now that it's here - now that abusive men are being cast out from their perches in Hollywood and the media - what to do about it? What do women want? (Please note that, though I'm writing here about women, this holds true for people of colour and diversity, too.)  FULL STORY arrow
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The week Hollywood imploded space
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Friday, November 10, 2017 – Page R1
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-- It was a crazy few days in the Valley. Late last week, the Los Angeles Times published a note to its readers announcing that Disney had barred it from press screenings.  FULL STORY arrow
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The big little truths of Nicole Kidman space
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Saturday, November 4, 2017 – Page R1
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-- Nicole Kidman claims she's not A-list.We're in a hotel room during this past September's Toronto International Film Festival, talking about her new film, The Killing of a Sacred Deer. (It opened in select cities Friday.) She's wearing an exquisite confection, as always - she's the best-dressed actress out there - a long-sleeved, floaty white dress with rivulets of silver sequined embroidery. But she's kicked off her tall silver stilettos.  FULL STORY arrow
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THE MADNESS OF KING GEORGE space
George Clooney is furious - and he's selling the anger expertly. How the Hollywood royal balances his smooth star power with liberal outrage
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Friday, October 27, 2017 – Page R1
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-- George Clooney is tired of hearing people say, ''We have to accept [U.S. President Donald] Trump and move on.''''No, man! No!'' he hollers down the phone last Saturday afternoon, from what he Rat-Pack-ishly refers to as ''sunny California.''  FULL STORY arrow
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Hollywood's golden rule: 'Nobody knows anything' space
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Friday, October 20, 2017 – Page R1
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-- Hollywood has a marketing problem. That's obvious in the wake of the Harvey Weinstein scandal, with people tripping over themselves to kick him out of their organizations (the Producers Guild of America and the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences have booted him), scrub his name from their film and television credits, and disassociate their clients from his soon-to-be-ex-wife's fashion label - partly because he allegedly preyed upon and committed crimes against women for 20plus years, but mostly because he finally got nailed in the media for it.  FULL STORY arrow
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When romantic connection remains frigid space
The tried-and-true trope of putting two opposites in a dire situation and have love blossom fails when there is no chemistry
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Friday, October 6, 2017 – Page R2
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-- The Mountain Between Us Directed by Hany Abu-Assad Written by J. Mills Goodloe and Chris Weitz Starring Kate Winslet, Idris Elba and Beau Bridges Classification 14A; 103 minutes 21/2  FULL STORY arrow
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Warm and fuzzy Idris Elba braves the blistering cold space
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Friday, September 29, 2017 – Page R1
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-- Toward the end of my 15 minutes with Idris Elba in a hotel meeting room during the Toronto International Film Festival, I throw caution to the wind and ask him outright: He knows he has the power to make any woman's knees buckle, right?  FULL STORY arrow
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Ben's status space
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Friday, September 22, 2017 – Page R1
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-- Some actors make so much eye contact during interviews, it's almost unnerving. And then there's Ben Stiller. In our 13 minutes together at the just-concluded Toronto International Film Festival - shaved from 15 minutes; everyone was shaving interviews this year - I think he looked directly at me three times.  FULL STORY arrow
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The best, worst and most awkward moments of TIFF 2017 space
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By KATE TAYLOR, BRAD WHEELER, JOHANNA SCHNELLER, JOHN SEMLEY, JULIA COOPER, NATHALIE ATKINSON, NOLAN BRYANT, ANNE T. DONAHUE,
Friday, September 15, 2017 – Page R5
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-- Although there are still plenty of TIFF screenings this weekend, most of the international press and high-wattage celebrities have left town and King Street is back to its usual tourist-trap self.  FULL STORY arrow
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Daniel Craig, the accidental hero of TIFF space
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Wednesday, September 13, 2017 – Page L1
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-- Here's a TIFF story for you: I'm in a glass office on the seventh floor of a Toronto media company, waiting to interview Daniel Craig about his movie Kings, which premieres on Sept.  FULL STORY arrow
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Choose wisely space
At the Toronto International Film Festival, how do you ensure that the people have actually spoken?
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Friday, September 8, 2017 – Page R1
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-- Everybody knows what winning the Grolsch People's Choice Award (GPCA) at the Toronto International Film Festival can do for a film - at best, Oscar glory; at worst, a hell of a lot of free publicity, plus $15,000 and a custom trophy. But when it comes to tabulating the votes, there's math, and then there's magic.  FULL STORY arrow
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SARAH POLLEY'S LIFELONG ALIAS space
The filmmaker has spent years trying to adapt Margaret Atwood's landmark novel, Alias Grace. Now, as Johanna Schneller reports, her once-impossible dream is set to steal the spotlight at TIFF
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Saturday, September 2, 2017 – Page R1
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-- Sarah Polley has spent more than half her life thinking about Alias Grace - from the age of 17, when she first read Margaret Atwood's award-winning novel, to now, at 38, as the sixhour miniseries she adapted from it is poised to premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival, followed by runs on CBC and Netflix.  FULL STORY arrow
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By BARRY HERTZ, KATE TAYLOR, JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Saturday, July 22, 2017 – Page R4
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-- War for the Planet of the Apes 4The supposed capper in Fox's new Apes trilogy is directed by Matt Reeves, who took over for Rupert Wyatt with 2014's Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, and has brought a peculiar sensibility to the modern studio tent-pole.  FULL STORY arrow
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Friday, July 14, 2017 – Page R5
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-- Baby Driver 3  FULL STORY arrow
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'I'd just as soon die on a movie set' space
Sam Elliott knows the Hollywood road is a long and tough one, but he's here to walk it all the same
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Friday, June 23, 2017 – Page R3
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-- Everyone on the set of the new film The Hero knew the scene was a good one: Sam Elliott was playing Lee Hayden, a washed-up cowboy actor who somehow landed an audition for a plum role - a patriarch estranged from his daughter - in a big-budget scifi franchise. He really wants the part. He needs it.  FULL STORY arrow
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Friday, June 23, 2017 – Page R3
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-- The Hero 21/2 I thought the romance would be the worst thing about this drama. Sam Elliott plays Lee, a worn out cowboy actor with an angry ex (Katharine Ross, Elliott's real wife), an estranged daughter (Krysten Ritter) and a cancer diagnosis. No one is more startled than he when he tumbles into an affair with Charlotte (Laura Prepon), a stand-up comedian. Now, Elliott is hale as hell for 72, but Prepon is 37. So I was pleasantly surprised that their palpable chemistry turns out to be the second-best thing in the film.  FULL STORY arrow
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ROOM TO BRO space
Rough Night is being marketed as the female-friendly equivalent of The Hangover, Very Bad Things and countless other raunchy dude yukfests. But if its filmmakers want to be truly funny, Johanna Schneller writes, they're going to have to stop looking to the good ol' boys for approval
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Friday, June 16, 2017 – Page R1
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-- Rough Night Directed by Lucia Aniello Written by Lucia Aniello and Paul Downs Starring Scarlett Johansson, Kate McKinnon, Jillian Bell, Ilana Glazer and Zoe Kravitz Classification 14A; 101 minutes 21/2  FULL STORY arrow
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Friday, June 9, 2017 – Page R4
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-- The behind-the-scenes footage that bedevilled the film A Dog's Purpose upon its release this past January is brief but painful: An obviously distressed German shepherd, Hercules, does not want to jump into a water tank, which eight outboard motors are churning to resemble a rushing river. His trainer nudges; he resists. Then we see Hercules in the tank, swimming for the wall and getting submerged for a frightening four seconds.  FULL STORY arrow
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Friday, June 9, 2017 – Page R4
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-- Megan Leavey 21/2The real Megan Leavey won a Purple Heart for nearly being blown to smithereens with Rex, her bomb-sniffing German shepherd, during their second tour in Iraq and fought to adopt him when he could no longer serve. The movie version works best when it shows us what putting the words ''woman'' and ''marine'' together really looks like.  FULL STORY arrow
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SINGULAR SENSATION space
As the clone-happy series Orphan Black wraps up, Johanna Schneller reports on how its success blew open the doors for well-written, genre-mashing Canadian co-productions - the dawn of a 'Maple Golden Age'
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Friday, June 9, 2017 – Page L1
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-- On a Toronto soundstage in February, the hit sci-fi drama Orphan Black is humming, shooting the eighth episode of its fifth and final season. Cosima (one of many clones played by Emmy-winner Tatiana Maslany) and Delphine (Evelyne Brochu) are huddled around a computer in Cosima's underground laboratory, which includes a mini grow-op. ''For medicinal use only,'' whispers John Fawcett, an affable dude with floppy blond hair, who cocreated the show with Graeme Manson.  FULL STORY arrow
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER, KATE TAYLOR, JULIA COOPER, BARRY HERTZ
Saturday, May 27, 2017 – Page R13
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-- Paris Can Wait 2File this one under: films I wish I liked. Anne (Diane Lane) needs to get from Cannes to Paris. She accepts a ride with a French business associate, Jacques (Arnaud Viard), and what should be a seven-hour dash turns into a days-long road trip through La Belle France, complete with vistas, vin and vats of fromage. I love that writer/director Eleanor Coppola (wife of Francis Ford) is making her feature film debut at 80. I applaud her for speaking to an underserved slice of filmgoers: women over 50. Anne spent her life nurturing others; now, confronted with a waning business, an empty nest and a distracted husband (Alec Baldwin), she has to think about what nurtures her.  FULL STORY arrow
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A Coppola gets mixed up in the family business space
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Friday, May 26, 2017 – Page R2
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FAME GAME -- Eleanor Coppola met Diane Lane when Lane was starring in The Outsiders, directed by Eleanor's husband, Francis Ford Coppola. Lane was just 17; the Coppolas' daughter, Sofia, played her little sister. Francis did his postproduction work at his family home in California's Napa Valley. Lane remembers Eleanor in the kitchen cooking away, her energy ''warm, patient and encouraging,'' Lane recalls in a phone interview.  FULL STORY arrow
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Friday, May 26, 2017 – Page R2
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-- Paris Can Wait 2File this one under: Films I wish I liked. Anne (Diane Lane) needs to get from Cannes to Paris. She accepts a ride with a French business associate, Jacques (Arnaud Viard), and what should be a seven-hour dash turns into a days-long road trip through La Belle France, complete with vistas, vin and vats of fromage. I love that writer/director Eleanor Coppola (yes, wife of Francis Ford) is making her feature-film debut at age 80 (she's made several documentaries, including Hearts of Darkness). I applaud her for speaking to an underserved slice of filmgoers, women over 50. Anne spent her life nurturing others; now, confronted with a waning business, an empty nest and a distracted husband (Alec Baldwin), she has to think about what nurtures her. The scenery is delicious, the food looks ravishing, Anne's wardrobe is spot-on.  FULL STORY arrow
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By BARRY HERTZ, JULIA COOPER, JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Saturday, May 20, 2017 – Page R8
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-- Alien: Covenant 2Ridley Scott's new film is intended to act as several things, none of them particularly admirable.It is a sequel to the underperforming and largely confusing Prometheus; it is a prequel to Scott's own 1979 classic, Alien; and, depending on how it does at the box office, it is the second plank of a new xenomorph-centric trilogy, or perhaps quadrilogy, in which humans boldly seek out new worlds and new ways to die. Mostly, it's a staid act of studio commerce - a familiar franchise that trades storytelling for intellectual property, originality for nostalgia.  FULL STORY arrow
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Rebuking the Debra Winger myth space
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Friday, May 19, 2017 – Page R1
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-- When Debra Winger was in her 30s and people called her ''outspoken'' or ''difficult'' - meaning, ''She has opinions'' and, ''She says them out loud'' - she didn't care. She was plucking plum roles and earning Oscar nominations (three, including for Terms of Endearment). When haters whispered, ''It must be her time of the month,'' if she took extra minutes in her trailer to prepare a scene, she shrugged it off.  FULL STORY arrow
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Friday, May 19, 2017 – Page R4
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-- The Lovers 21/2Mary and Michael (Debra Winger and Tracy Letts) are tired of being married to each other. Each has a lover. Each is plotting divorce, although neither can quite pull the trigger.  FULL STORY arrow
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BUSTER'S MAL HEART space
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Friday, May 12, 2017 – Page R3
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A drama worthy of Harvey Weinstein space
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Friday, May 5, 2017 – Page R1
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-- It was classic Harvey Weinstein.The co-head of The Weinstein Company (TWC), and the last of the charismatic, bombastic film moguls, was a few weeks ago throwing down another challenge to the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA), which rates movies based on age-appropriateness. In the past, he'd objected to ratings he'd deemed restrictive - and won - for his films Bully (a doc about bullying), The King's Speech (for scattered F-bombs) and Philomena (detailing abuse in the Catholic church).  FULL STORY arrow
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By ANDREW PARKER, ALEX BOZIKOVIC, BARRY HERTZ, JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Saturday, April 29, 2017 – Page R11
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-- Born in China 21/2The latest in the series of yearly Disney nature documentaries travels to the mountains of China to spend time with the likes of cranes, golden snub-nosed monkeys, chiru, snow leopards and, of course, pandas. Clocking in at barely 75 minutes (including credits that are worth sticking around for), Born in China doesn't reinvent or improve on the nature documentary form in any way. It's a dedicated delivering of educational basics geared toward a younger audience, wrapped in made-up stories about real animal families, replete with corny narration warmly delivered by John Krasinski. There's a little bit of peril and mayhem, but mostly of the variety that won't give kiddies nightmares. As always with these Disney docs, the cinematography is patient and resplendent, and for once there's even a bit of tragedy that's well-handled. (G)  FULL STORY arrow
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In a male-dominated industry, all eyes on the female gaze space
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Friday, April 28, 2017 – Page R1
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-- Is there such a thing as a female gaze in movies and television? That was the hot topic at last weekend's Toronto Screenwriting Conference. On Saturday, I sat down with five female writers who'd just discussed it in an hourlong panel: Tracey Deer (Mohawk Girls); Jennifer Holness (Shoot the Messenger); Robby Hoffman (Odd  FULL STORY arrow
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Christian Bale, the grand inquisitor space
The star of the new film The Promise says actors should have a level of commitment to a project in which they question everything
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Friday, April 21, 2017 – Page R4
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-- Charlotte Le Bon, the Montrealborn actress, was nervous.She'd been cast in the new drama The Promise as Ana, an artist in 1915 Istanbul who falls in love with two dashing men: Mikael, an Armenian medical student played by Oscar Isaac; and Chris, an American journalist played by Christian Bale. Le Bon sent an e-mail to each, admitting she was eager to meet them, but intimidated.  FULL STORY arrow
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Friday, April 21, 2017 – Page R4
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-- The Promise 21/2Sweeping historical romance epics. Who doesn't love them?  FULL STORY arrow
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Ted Kotcheff talks about his life in film space
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Tuesday, April 18, 2017 – Page L5
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-- Ted Kotcheff, the most famous Toronto-born film and television director you may not have heard of, loves telling stories.Stories about a Montreal hustler (The Apprenticeship of Duddy Kravitz). A Vietnam vet not welcome back in America (First Blood). Dudes on a tear with a corpse in tow (Weekend at Bernie's). Victims of violent crime (Law and Order: Special Victims Unit, which he executive-produced for 12 years). He also loves telling stories about making those stories, so it was a logical leap for him to write a memoir, Director's Cut: My Life in Film, and to come to Toronto late last month to chat about it.  FULL STORY arrow
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By BRAD WHEELER, JOHANNA SCHNELLER, ANDREW PARKER, KATE TAYLOR
Saturday, April 15, 2017 – Page R9
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-- Gifted 11/2  FULL STORY arrow
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No longer a Bond, Brosnan follows Hollywood's latest path space
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Friday, April 7, 2017 – Page R3
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-- Pierce Brosnan's agent was playing it cool. He knew the creative team behind the new AMC drama series The Son was up against a deadline. He knew they'd lost their star, Sam Neill, to unforeseen circumstances. So on his side of the conference table, he was radiating agent blase hardball: ''If Pierce chooses to do this ...'' Meanwhile, across the table, Brosnan was saying things like, ''I think this is the beard my character should have, I've already started growing it,'' and, ''My dialect coach and I are working on my south Texas accent,'' and, ''I want to get to set two weeks early and bone up on my shooting.''  FULL STORY arrow
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ALSO OPENING space
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER, ANDREW PARKER, KATE TAYLOR, BRAD WHEELER, BARRY HERTZ
Friday, April 7, 2017 – Page R2
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-- Going in Style2In the original version of Going in Style, George Burns, Art Carney and Lee Strasberg robbed a bank because they were bored. By the end, two had died and one was in prison. And I remember more from it, which I saw when it came out in 1979, than I do from this remake, which I saw last month. Director Zach Braff (Garden State) and screenwriter Theodore Melfi (Hidden Figures) are determined to award their bandits - Morgan Freeman, Michael Caine and Alan Arkin - a happy ending. So they justify the robbery (the trio's pensions have evaporated) and give them a ridiculously easy path to success.  FULL STORY arrow
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GOING IN STYLE space
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Friday, April 7, 2017 – Page L2
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-- 2  FULL STORY arrow
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The many complex women of Jessica Chastain space
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Friday, March 31, 2017 – Page R4
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-- The last time I saw Jessica Chastain, she was in a deep squat at the edge of a Toronto stage. She had just finished a QandA about her political film, Miss Sloane, and was talking to a group of young women who gazed up at her in eager adoration. The impressive thing isn't only how long she talked to them (a while) - it's also that she did so while holding a full squat in a fitted, floor-length crimson sheath and six-inch heels. That's not easy. But Chastain doesn't need no stinkin' easy. She needs to work.  FULL STORY arrow
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Woody Harrelson's pursuit of happiness space
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Friday, March 24, 2017 – Page R3
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-- A lot of people are trying to get Woody Harrelson on the phone with me. There's one team in New York and another in Toronto. We're scheduled for Monday at 1:15 p.m. Then 1:45.  FULL STORY arrow
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REVIEW space
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Friday, March 24, 2017 – Page R3
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-- Wilson2  FULL STORY arrow
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Anne of Albuquerque space
How Moira Walley-Beckett went from Breaking Bad's drug-infested New Mexico to rebooting Canada's most beloved orphan
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Saturday, March 18, 2017 – Page R1
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-- Moira Walley-Beckett wrote what's widely considered the best single hour of television ever, the 14th episode of Season 5 of Breaking Bad, titled ''Ozymandias,'' after the Shelley poem about ruined greatness. In it, Hank was killed, Walt betrayed Jesse and pretty much every major character collapsed to his or her knees. She won an Emmy for it, as did Anna Gunn and Bryan Cranston. Now WalleyBeckett has a new subject: Anne of Green Gables.  FULL STORY arrow
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The future of Canadian film is ... Canadian television space
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By JOHANNA SCHNELLER
Friday, March 10, 2017 – Page R1
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-- Sarah Polley, the Oscar-nominated, Canadian writer/director/actress, spent 20 years thinking about how to adapt Margaret Atwood's sprawling novel Alias Grace for the screen.She spent her own money to buy the rights when they came available. Then, she spent nearly two years writing, often in snatched hours during her children's naps.  FULL STORY arrow
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