Many people around the world are currently staying at home practising social-distancing to help stop the spread of COVID-19. It's scary and stressful at times and most people have to adjust to working from home and surviving without their favourite extracurricular activities (like going to the movies…) Fortunately, there’s a streaming service whose sole purpose is to make everyone feel better- Disney+! Be it through waves of warm and fuzzy nostalgia or countless hours of family-friendly entertainment to keep the stir-crazy kids occupied, Disney’s vast collection of movies and TV shows could not have come at a better time.
Cathy Yan is a new and exciting director that more people should be aware of. She has a track record of making interesting films with a diverse cast and crew. I cannot wait to see what the future brings for Yan, I know I will be there opening weekend for any films with her name in the credits.
Henry James' novella The Turn of the Screw is a staple in the horror genre. It's been adapted into plays, radio show, and several movies. The latest adaptation is Floria Sigismondi's "The Turning"(2019). This is the first time this story, primarily about a woman and her mental state, is being told solely by a female director. "The Turning" tells the story of Kate (Mackenzie Davis), a young teacher turned governess for a young girl (Brooklynn Prince) who recently witnessed the tragic death of her parents. The girls troubled and slightly creepy older brother (Finn Wolfhard) is sent home from boarding school shortly after Kate starts her new job. It's then that Kate starts to notice strange and unexplainable things going on in the house and thinks there may be something sinister or supernatural going on...
Awards season is upon us! Many nominees and winners from multiple critics organizations have already been decided and on December 9th the nominees for the 77th Golden Globe Awards were announced. No huge surprises, maybe a few snubs, and a huge presence of films and tv shows from streaming services. Netflix received an impressive 35 nominations across 21 categories, including two prime contenders for Best Motion Picture - Drama. Unfortunately, something that seems to be an ongoing trend with the Golden Globes is their inability to recognize female filmmakers.
Harriet Tubman was an amazing woman. She escaped slavery on her own, went back dozens of times to rescue others, lead a military operation south to reach even more people, and after the war fought for women's rights. Her life has been begging for a biopic but until now she has only appeared in a cameo role in "Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter"(2012), as the subject of an episode of "Drunk History" (2013-), and on various history shows for kids. "Harriet"(2019) does an excellent job finally brining an extraordinary woman to the big screen.
Anyone who uses social media to discuss their favourite tv shows or movies has probably run into a crazy fan or two. Most major franchises - Star Wars, Marvel, DC, Harry Potter, Doctor Who, Game of Thrones, Disney, etc- have a large following on social media that unfortunately includes some people whose goal is to make everyone else miserable. These "Toxic Fans" (or "Toxic Fandoms" as a group) are defined as fans that are overly negative towards opposing opinions, are possessive, entitled, and/or abusive towards people they think are "ruining their franchise". These groups of people have been in the spotlight recently for being so abusive they've made actors flee social media entirely. An example of this is with Rian Johnson's "Star Wars Episode VIII: The Last Jedi" (2017) and its character Rose Tico and actress Kelly Marie Tran.
There are many sub-genres in horror; one of my favorites being horror-comedies or campy horror. There's something great about watching a movie you know is going to be cheesy and ridiculous- you don't expect anything spectacular and are usually pleasantly surprised. Holly Dale's first feature film "Blood & Donuts" (1995) is a hidden gem from the 90's that fits that description.
"Blood & Donuts" is about a vampire name Boya (played by Gordon Currie) who awakens from a 25 year nap after a golf ball hits him in the head. Disoriented, he takes a cab to a graveyard to dig up his well-hidden belongings. He finds a place to stay at a run-down hotel and then makes his way to the all-night donut shop next door. Boya befriends cabbie and donut addict Earl (Louis Ferreira) and falls for waitress Molly (Helene Clarkson). Earl is having some trouble with two mobster types, so Boya steps up to protect him. Boya's scorned ex-girlfriend Rita (Fiona Reid) is also out looking for revenge because Boya would not turn her into a vampire.