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Movies, music and popular culture reports from Ex-Press staff

FORGET SPANDEX, IT’S SUIT TIME!

We thank the tailors for making these Age of Ultron superheroes look so dapper, but if we look back at the birth of the stretchy suit, we have to thank the tailor's son and a 'super fabric' called nylon LONDON -- Isn't it time superheroes dressed like men instead of Russian figure skaters from the '70s? We give full marks to the elegantly tailored Paul Bettany (above) and the ever-dashing Chris Evans for shaking it up at The Avengers: Age of Ultron premiere, but we also realize without all the flashy NASCAR paint, it's hard to figure out which guy in a suit stopped an evil artificial intelligence from taking over the universe. When Canada's own Joe Shuster created the whole, hyper-fitted look of the modern superhero with Superman's first appearance in Action Comics back in 1938, he not only offered up a protagonist with an identifiable brand and logo, he may have been inspired by the invention of a brand new, manmade fabric called nylon. The first entirely synthetic ...

Brett Morgen on Kurt Cobain: Montage of Heck

Interview: The outspoken director spent eight years sifting through a 'cold empty storage unit hidden from the world' to find relics of Cobain that 'were still breathing' By Katherine Monk PARK CITY, UTAH -- A homemade cassette featuring a cover of a Beatles love song, the story of how he lost his virginity, and countless hours of home video created with Courtney Love: For 20 years, these relics salvaged from the wreckage of Kurt Cobain’s life remained unseen, and unheard, until now. Compiled and delicately edited into a vibrantly creative portrait of the late artist by filmmaker Brett Morgen, these once-hidden fragments of a shattered soul make Kurt Cobain: Montage of Heck more than just another documentary about another dead rock star. Sifting through the contents with the careful hand and brush of a paleontologist uncovering an unknown bone, Morgen’s film shows us a different version of the now-mythical figure who's been condensed into a souvenir of grunge, plaid and ...
3.5Score

Movie review: Black Robe

BLACK ROBE (1991)   Three and a half stars out of five. Directed by: Bruce Beresford. Starring Lothaire Bluteau, Tantoo Cardinal, Aden Young, Sandrine Holt, August Schellenberg, Billy Two Rivers. Running time: 100 minutes Set against the backdrop of an as yet uncolonized Canada, Black Robe tells the story of the first Jesuit missionaries to set foot in the New World with hopes of converting the Aboriginal peoples to Christianity. Lothaire Bluteau (Daniel in Jesus of Montreal) reprises his role of the saintly martyr as he plays Father Laforgue, a man of God who fears nothing -- even when he should. Believing he is on a mission from the Almighty Himself, Laforgue heads up-river with his Algonquin guide in search of his proselytizing brothers who have built a mission in the midst of this vast, empty landscape. Realizing too late that he was leading his Algonquin friends into hostile territory, Laforgue is forced to watch as the Iroquois close in with deadly consequences. ...

PROFILE: Bruce McDonald

BRUCE McDONALD Born May 28, 1959, Kingston, Ont.   He’s made a lot of movies, but Bruce McDonald will go down in history as the man who announced he would buy “the biggest chunk of hash” he could find after winning the $25,000 prize for best Canadian feature at the 1989 Toronto International Film Festival (then called Festival of Festivals).  “What can I say,” says McDonald. “I’ve never been all that interested in doing what’s expected of me.” A true Canadian maverick, McDonald’s career started in documentary and gradually shifted into narrative features after a solid stint as an editor on such films as Atom Egoyan’s Speaking Parts and Ron Mann’s Comic Book Confidential -- not to mention crewing on Norman Jewison’s nun story, Agnes of God. A proud Canadian, when McDonald originally set to work on his first road movie, Roadkill, he wanted to make sure it was a Canadian take on the romantic genre and made sure his characters pointed north -- ...
3.5Score

Rihanna and Jim Parsons conjure sugar-coated chemistry in Home

Movie review: Home If you can get past the silly names and the fact everyone looks like a vinyl squeeze toy, this Tim Johnson movie proves a decent place to hang your hat  

PROFILE: MICHAEL SNOW

MICHAEL SNOW Born 1929, Toronto, Ont. If there were ever a perfect image of the Canadian psyche -- it’s that of Snow. Born with the perfect name and a desire to make us aware of negative space, Snow may be a grandaddy in the context of this book, but as Atom Egoyan’s foreword makes clear, his vision of the world has framed much of the Canadian film experience for generations past - and no doubt generations to come. For a guy concerned with the mechanics of framing, it’s a fitting legacy. Born in the very crust of the Canadian establishment, raised in Toronto’s tony Rosedale district, and funnelled through its favored institution -- Upper Canada College -- Snow was born to be a bank president. The fact that he became an artist makes him an original rebel, as his entire life’s path turned him into a living artwork defined in opposition to institutional ways of thinking. Already a painter and sculptor, Snow’s formal film career began in 1956, when he joined George ...