TFCA Friday: Week of January 18th, 2019

January 18, 2019

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

Opening this Week

Around India With a Movie Camera (dir. Sandhya Suri)

Was there a random box of archival footage at the British Film Institute labelled Odds and Ends – India? One can only wonder how such a haphazard assortment of bits and pieces from film history landed in such an unwieldy heap” — Pat Mullen, POV Magazine

Brexit (dir. Toby Haynes)

A ripped-from-the-headlines dramedy that maybe should have simmered for a little longer” — Norm Wilner, NOW Magazine

Glass (dir. M. Night Shyamalan)

Serious gazes, weird camera angles and a sonorous score that are meant to signal “Caution: Auteur at Work.” Shyamalan, once deemed a filmmaking wunderkind for his breakthrough hit The Sixth Sense, has become the world’s most annoying nerd” — Peter Howell, The Toronto Star

A talky film full of ill-conceived flourishes and misplaced condescension that fails the material on every level” — Norm Wilner, NOW Magazine

An unfocused movie with some interesting ideas, and so much expositional dialogue in place of action, it’s sometimes more of a lecture than a thriller” — Jim Slotek, Original-Cin

In a world already crowded with avengers, suicide squads and leagues of justice, movies need to make a stronger case than Glass does for why we need another” — Chris Knight, The National Post

Shyamalan seals his fate as being forever aligned with ineptitude – and there will be no mercy reserved for whoever inevitably funds his next comeback” — Barry Hertz, The Globe and Mail

Long, boring, and dead serious on its subjects despite being generally silly” — Gilbert Seah, Afro Toronto

Hal (dir. Amy Scott)

Pitched squarely at cineastes who already know and love Ashby’s work, Hal is an easily digestible celebration of its subject” — Norm Wilner, NOW Magazine

Ashby gets a warm cinephile’s appreciation in Hal, an engaging crash course on authorship and film history” — Pat Mullen, POV Magazine

Hale County: This Morning, This Evening (dir. RaMell Ross)

Vividly sketches African-American lives on an Alabama trek that bypasses stereotypes and narrative conceit, proceeding directly to empathy” — Peter Howell, The Toronto Star

Offers a rare look at the Black Belt region of the U.S.” — Gilbert Seah, Afro Toronto

Inventing Tomorrow (dir. Laura Nix)

[Its subject] observes that most kids from around the world are more keen on fighting for climate change” — Radheyan Simonpillai, NOW Magazine

Soars when it shows young strangers from different countries making friends” — Gilbert Seah, Festival Reviews

Stan & Ollie (dir. Jon S. Baird)

The actors rise to the occasion regardless, reminding us of the ephemeral nature of fame and the fragile nature of friendship” — Peter Howell, The Toronto Star

People expecting plenty of Laurel & Hardy style laughs will be disappointed, obviously, given the movie’s comedy-lions-in-winter theme. But this thoughtful portrait of a long-lasting professional marriage rings touchingly true” — Jim Slotek, Original-Cin

So perfectly do the actors embody their roles. They are utterly believable, not only in their individual mannerisms, but in the way they relate to one another” — Chris Knight, The National Post

The movie contemplates mortality and obsolescence as its heroes wheeze their way through a series of under-attended performances, not quite realizing audiences are moving on from the slapstick that made them a household name” — Norm Wilner, NOW Magazine

A fun throwback to a golden age of comedy” — Pat Mullen, Cinemablographer

The shooting of the last performance on stage must be commended for its use of shadows, interesting angles, and editing” — Gilbert Seah, Festival Reviews

This beautifully acted two-hander about the final chapter … is gentle and poignant” — Anne Brodie, What She Said!

For a movie focused on two of the most influential performers in comedy history, it feels like an especially cruel joke – and not even the punchiness of its two stars can help the thing land” — Barry Hertz, The Globe and Mail

Vertical Features: The Landscape Films of Ermacora and Johnson

“If the frigid days of January are a bit too nippy to let you get out and enjoy nature, the films of Ryan Ermacora and Jessica Johnson are welcome retreats to the great outdoors,” Pat Mullen writes in POV Magazine on the new Vertical Features screening series