TFCA Friday: Week of August 4th, 2017

August 4, 2017

Welcome to TFCA Friday, a weekly round-up of film reviews and articles by TFCA critics.

Opening this Week

An Inconvenient Sequel: Truth to Power (dirs. Bonni Cohen, Jon Shenk)

Brave New Jersey (dir. Jody Lambert)

One killer laugh about 20 minutes in, but that’s it” — NW

Brigsby Bear (dir. Dave McCary)

You just have to accept the darkness behind it as part of the package. Go see Brigsby Bear” — NW

This is one weird movie. But in a landscape of Hollywood productions that are dubiously touted as “feel-good,” Brigsby Bear is undeniably that” — JS

Dope as shit” — AP, with an awesome interview with filmmaker Dave McCary

The Dark Tower (dir. Nikolaj Arcel)

Duly inspired by the film, I offer this warning: He (or she) who pays good money to see The Dark Tower has forgotten the face of their father” — PH

The story sounds absolutely terrible. But surprisingly the film is not all that bad” — GS

I honestly haven’t been this entertained by something this borderline nonsensical and strange since Cannon Films adapted Masters of the Universe with Dolph Lundgren in the late 1980s” — AP

Detroit (dir. Kathryn Bigelow)

The injustice and anger behind it all feels like current reality, even a half-century on, making Detroit urgent viewing regardless of its character-development flaws” — PH

The film quickly becomes almost play-like in its focus on a single, claustrophobic and deadly event” — JS

The structure means the film peaks with about half an hour left to go, but when Bigelow traps us inside the Algiers, Detroit packs more of a punch than any other film this year” — NW

Will haunt the memories of viewers for a long time” — AP

Benefits from very strong performances, the best of these from 24-year old actor Will Poulter” — GS

The Jazz Loft According to W. Eugene Smith (dir. Sara Fishko)

Sara Fishko knows exactly where the great stories lie, and she allows each piece to fall as if it were a part of a fast paced jam session” — AP

Landline (dir. Gillian Robespierre)

Three years after their terrific dramedy Obvious Child, director Gillian Robespierre and star Jenny Slate reunite for a gentler project that doesn’t quite match the spirit of its predecessor” — NW

Secrets spill and conflicts come to a head. No doubt, Landline hits familiar beats, and ties up its loose ends too neatly. But I was sorry to see the credits roll. Mostly, I regretted that I couldn’t click on the next episode” — LL

Charming and compulsively watchable” — AP

Tokyo Idols (dir. Kyoko Miyake)

Andrew Parker chats with director Kyoko Miyake about, you guessed it, middle-aged men who worship teenage pop starlets

The Trip to Spain (dir. Michael Winterbottom)

If this is the last time we get to hang out with these characters, I’m okay with that too. It’s been delicious” — NW

We can still laugh along as the two men scarf down scallops with caviar, amidst competitive impersonations — Mick Jagger, David Bowie and duelling Brandos. But the surprise is missing” — LL

A few new spices, but it’s also easy to see that this series is starting to thin” — AP

More of the same” — GS

TIFF 2017: Coming Soon

Barry Hertz looks at the 2017 edition of Platform: “This year, the offerings represent a further splitting of the program’s already fuzzy identity

Meanwhile, Peter Howell follows up with TIFF’s Cameron Bailey on the evolution of the programming process: “Is it accident or design that Platform has become slightly more mainstream?

On the topic of Midnight Madness’ new programmer, BH spoke with Peter Kuplowsky on the “surreal” new gig

And, of course, Borg/McEnroe, the Opening Night Film! “With no massively huge, box-office-friendly celebrity element (such as was the case with the Denzel Washington-led Magnificent Seven, and Downey’s The Judge) or obvious Canadian element (unlike Demolition, which was directed by Quebecker Jean-Marc Vallée), Borg/McEnroe will have to trade off the pure excitement of its historical narrative, and the impressive, though relatively untested, chops of its director Janus Metz” — BH

TIFF Cinematheque presents: Ida Lupino

Gilbert Seah with a feature review of Outrage and selected capsule reviews

And Andrew Parker with five must-see performances and directorial efforts from the pioneering filmmaker

Reviews and features by: Andrew Parker (AP), Jim Slotek (JS), Norm Wilner (NW), Barry Hertz (BH), Peter Howell (PH), Gilbert Seah (GS), and Liam Lacey (LL).