month : 07/2015 33 results

Mission improbable, but entertaining

Tom Cruise has just the right amount of crazy to energize the latest film in a series of preposterous action adventures that take us around the world to see breathtaking stunts. Warning: thinking is counter-indicated    

Stay chill with cucumber soup

The coolest member of the humble gourd family makes a refreshingly sweet summer soup that will take the sweat out of summer and keep you hydrated in a tasty way By Louise Crosby It’s scorching in Ottawa this week. Temperatures in the 30s, lots of humidity, no breeze. Walking to the store in the middle of the afternoon, I am blasted by the heat shimmering off the sidewalk. It’s mid-summer, after all. This is how it should be.   Personally I like it. If you get the weeding and the errands done early, you can spend the hot hours reading in a cool room. Or you can take in a late afternoon movie with friends followed by dinner out, all in air-conditioned comfort, returning home in time to water the garden in the cool of the evening. Bedtime, you open the windows and put on a fan.   Times like this I make cold soup, in this case cucumber soup, chunks of market-fresh cucumber blended with plain yogurt, lots of mint and dill, hints of garlic, onion and lemon ...

Movie review: Vacation feels like work

Though the set-ups take forever and Ed Helms's performance is just plain irritating, there's enough humanity in this vehicle to make us care as it drives American family values into a brick wall -- with Griswold results  

Interview: Juliette Binoche laughs off fear of aging

The Clouds of Sils Maria features the French siren in the role of an aging actress agonizing over her latest job: playing the role of the older woman, instead of the ingenue, in a revival of the play that made her famous. Binoche says she wasn't afraid to tackle a reflection of herself, but she did push director Olivier Assayas to face what she calls a "fear of actors... particularly women."   By Katherine Monk In an age of ubiquitous celebrity, Juliette Binoche is an old-fashioned movie star. It’s more than the Prada blouse that seems to flow over her curves with loving deference, and more than the elegantly honed features that allow her to look both pretty and strong simultaneously. The French actress who emerged in the wake of The English Patient has a presence that moves through a room like precious perfume, a tingle mingled with an essence. Binoche brings her intoxicating powers to every role she’s ever had, from Lasse Halstrom’s Chocolat to Michael ...

Canadian Must-Sees: The Sweet Hereafter

Atom Egoyan crafted a world with a gaping black hole in the centre, pulling characters into a swirling, self-destructive vortex, while simultaneously affirming the redemptive power of love THE SWEET HEREAFTER (1997) 5/5 Directed by: Atom Egoyan Starring: Ian Holm, Sarah Polley, Tom McCamus, Bruce Greenwood, Arsinée Khanjian, Gabrielle Rose, Earl Pastko, Stephanie Morgenstern and Maury Chaykin. Running time: 112 minutes   A film that touches on the essence of love by throwing us into the abyss of loss, The Sweet Hereafter marks the apex of the English-Canadian film tradition as it navigates the empty space left in the wake of tragedy with a gentle, but unsentimental eye. Based on the novel by Russell Banks, The Sweet Hereafter focuses on a school bus tragedy in a small town, and the big city lawyer who drives into town looking to point the finger of blame. Ian Holm plays Mitchell Stephens, a slimy litigator who makes a living off of other people’s pain ...

Rod Mickleburgh gets folked up

The annual running of the Birkenstock 500 may get tougher, and the bass may get louder, but the Vancouver Folk Music Festival remains an alternate universe where peace, love and political correctness rule -- in a non-fascist way By Rod Mickleburgh For the first time in many years, I was without my constant companion at this year’s Vancouver Folk Festival. And my cousin’s young ‘un had the nerve to get hitched on Friday, the Folk Fest’s opening day, so I missed the fabulous Pokey Lafarge, when he still had a voice. Still, I had a blast. Artistic director Linda Tanaka managed once again to assemble a vintage brew of the known, the barely known and the unknown into an eclectic, heady mix of outstanding music. There were fewer ultra-headliners than unusual this year, and yet the festival was terrific. All these people I’d never heard of. How dare they be both young and great…? Not everything was perfect. The legendary Birkenstock 500 dash to earn a good tarp ...

Movie review: Mr. Holmes deduces Sherlock as an old man

Ian McKellen gives a performance of warm humanity as an aging Sherlock Holmes who is trying to solve his last and most puzzling mystery: where did he go wrong?

Movie review: Irrational Man is Woody Allen at his unfunniest

The new Woody Allen movie is a morality play that looks at a philosophy professor who wants to commit the perfect murder. The result isn’t very interesting, and not at all funny  

The Look of Silence screams for justice

Joshua Oppenheimer's sequel to The Act of Killing wanted to provide an emotional and moral coda to the original as it sought remorse in the eyes of the guilty, but in every beautiful saturated frame, The Look of Silence finds only the blank face of denial   -30-

Movie review: Southpaw packs a familiar punch

Jake Gyllenhaal shows real acting power in an otherwise familiar story about a boxer who has to be redeemed in the ring