Georgia Straight

Tomatometer-approved publication
Rating Title/Year Author
Botero (2018) Ken Eisner Makes a pretty good case for taking the artist more seriously. For one thing, his political art gets a necessary airing here. EDIT
Posted Feb 18, 2020
Portrait of a Lady on Fire (2019) Ken Eisner Céline Sciamma, who previously assayed more contemporary studies with Tomboy and Girlhood, here strikes the perfect balance between smart social parable, formal composition, and soulful contemplation of the tools -- and limits -- of art itself. EDIT
Posted Feb 13, 2020
The Assistant (2019) Ken Eisner It's just one person going through the motions in an unspecified place and time. But The Assistant speaks eloquently to the Right Now. EDIT
Posted Feb 13, 2020
Come to Daddy (2019) Adrian Mack A fabulously entertaining comic thriller poised somewhere between Alfred Hitchcock and vintage John Waters. EDIT
Posted Feb 6, 2020
The Traitor (2019) Ken Eisner A satisfying saga from the great Italian filmmaker Marco Bellocchio... First and foremost, the film benefits from the riveting performance of Pierfrancesco Favino. EDIT
Posted Feb 6, 2020
2020 Oscar Nominated Shorts - Documentary (2020) Ken Eisner Viewers of this Oscar program should listen to a girl in that opening skateboarding flick, who advises, "Don't act fragile. This is a place for tough people!" EDIT
Posted Feb 4, 2020
2020 Oscar Nominated Shorts - Live Action (2020) Ken Eisner Many forms of sibling fealty are tested in this gratifyingly consistent batch of scripted shorts, clocking in at roughly 20 solid minutes each. EDIT
Posted Feb 3, 2020
Rabid (2019) Adrian Mack Outlandish fun, with lashings of gore and extravagantly disgusting practical effects compensating for the ripe dialogue and Mackenzie Gray's camped-out performance. EDIT
Posted Jan 30, 2020
Corpus Christi (2019) Ken Eisner Corpus Christi is surprisingly entertaining, sometimes funny fare, with a soft colour palette, smart dialogue, and enough graceful repose to provoke deeper thought. EDIT
Posted Jan 30, 2020
2020 Oscar Nominated Shorts - Animation (2020) Ken Eisner With any luck, this curiously uneven program will be capped by the terrific "Maestro", a French-made two minutes of Italian opera performed by nocturnal forest animals. EDIT
Posted Jan 30, 2020
Quezon's Game (2020) Ken Eisner Limits to the budget and acting ability dampen its vision, but the script is surprisingly frank about the island-packed country's rocky road to independence. EDIT
Posted Jan 30, 2020
The Gentlemen (2020) Ken Eisner The cast [has] so much fun with familiar material it's not difficult to simply yield to their judgement in picking scripts and packing heat. EDIT
Posted Jan 27, 2020
Les misérables (2019) Ken Eisner [Director Ladj Ly] has as much sympathetic grasp of the law-enforcement side as he does of the polyglot population. Ly leavens the grit with deft, dark humor. EDIT
Posted Jan 23, 2020
Cunningham (2019) Ken Eisner The 90-minute film may not cohere into an overwhelming whole... But its subject will prove inspiring to many artists struggling with the meaning of their own work. EDIT
Posted Jan 23, 2020
Color Out of Space (2019) Adrian Mack An uncaged Cage is no deal-breaker, and the suggestion that Lavinia's bad magic is responsible for drawing down the magenta-hued visitor from space gives the film an emotional weight that eventually pays off. EDIT
Posted Jan 23, 2020
The Last Full Measure (2020) Ken Eisner A moving if somewhat self-congratulating effort, The Last Full Measure is as much a tribute to aging A-list actors as it is to the Vietnam veterans they so lovingly portray. EDIT
Posted Jan 23, 2020
Like a Boss (2020) Ken Eisner It's hard to say if this strikingly unfunny effort, led by a notably affable cast, would be better if it wasn't written and directed by men. EDIT
Posted Jan 16, 2020
Clemency (2019) Ken Eisner The filmmaker's commitment to utter seriousness is admirable, if ultimately stultifying. What sticks are the day-to-day penitentiary scenes, which show the truly deadening effects of a place where mortality is front and centre at every moment. EDIT
Posted Jan 16, 2020
1917 (2019) Janet Smith A picture that blends the surreal nightmarescape of Apocalypse Now with the journey-quest of Saving Private Ryan, torqued up by a race against time -- and, of course, by the rush of watching the filmmakers pull this off on a sheer technical level. EDIT
Posted Jan 13, 2020
The Whale and the Raven (2019) Ken Eisner The overhead shots of this gorgeous, if precarious, landscape are worth the price of your passage. EDIT
Posted Jan 9, 2020
Invisible Life (2019) Ken Eisner The acting is uneven, the sets slapdash. But the biggest problem, especially for a director as experienced as Madame Satã's Karim Aïnouz, working from Martha Batalha's book of the same name, is that its characters aren't convincingly developed. EDIT
Posted Jan 9, 2020
Il pleuvait des oiseaux (2019) Janet Smith Louise Archambault's gently paced and unexpectedly deep new film has a kind of tenderness you don't often experience in the movies. EDIT
Posted Jan 9, 2020
Dosed (2019) Ken Eisner The subject is nonetheless so (re)new to cinema that Dosed represents a door of perception well worth walking through. EDIT
Posted Dec 23, 2019
Bombshell (2019) Ken Eisner Timely and cleverly engaging. EDIT
Posted Dec 23, 2019
Menteur (2019) Ken Eisner he movie, written by veteran comic director Émile Gaudreault and two others, ratchets up enough manic fun to at least gesture at something deeper. EDIT
Posted Dec 20, 2019
A Hidden Life (2019) Ken Eisner Apart from some clever use of old newsreel footage, the film's three hours must be spent with distantly murmuring folks either tilling the earth or staring at the sky. EDIT
Posted Dec 20, 2019
63 Up (2019) Ken Eisner The steadfast subjects-10 men and, still shockingly, only four women-have gone through the usual life changes. EDIT
Posted Dec 20, 2019
Booksmart (2019) Ken Eisner This fun, fast-moving film is a directorial debut for Olivia Wilde, who helped polish a script kicking around for a decade-one written by four women, not to the detriment of its general cohesion and frequent hilarity. EDIT
Posted Dec 16, 2019
The Kindness of Strangers (2019) Ken Eisner The cast is stellar-Stella!-but everyone checks out long before it's all over. EDIT
Posted Dec 12, 2019
The Two Popes (2019) Ken Eisner The multilingual movie can be viewed as an advanced acting class. EDIT
Posted Dec 12, 2019
Knives Out (2019) Ken Eisner A celebration of storytelling itself. EDIT
Posted Dec 11, 2019
Queen & Slim (2019) Ken Eisner The timeliness and powerful intentions of Queen & Slim are inarguable, as are the talents on display. EDIT
Posted Dec 10, 2019
Frankie (2019) Ken Eisner The whole thing feels too hastily written (or improvised) to carry much weight, and you would think such a slight tale would compensate with stylish aesthetics. EDIT
Posted Dec 5, 2019
() Ken Eisner The stuff that lands carries a wallop. EDIT
Posted Dec 5, 2019
Varda by Agnès (2019) Ken Eisner This retrospective is exactly what you want right now. EDIT
Posted Dec 5, 2019
Stand! (2019) Ken Eisner Director Robert Adetuyi...makes a strong impression on a low budget, and marshals large groups of people in dynamic ways. EDIT
Posted Dec 2, 2019
Marriage Story (2019) Ken Eisner Baumbach finds raucous humour and wry insight throughout. Happily for the two-and-a-quarter-hour running time, he keeps a sharp eye on entertainment value. EDIT
Posted Dec 2, 2019
Dark Waters (2019) Ken Eisner More than the waters are dark in this timely, meaningful, but ultimately soft-landing environmental drama. EDIT
Posted Dec 2, 2019
21 Bridges (2019) Ken Eisner As forgettable as its title. EDIT
Posted Nov 21, 2019
The Irishman (2019) Ken Eisner Relying on the elegant camera moves of Mexico's Rodrigo Prieto, the lovingly crafted film allows De Niro to run a greatest-hits reel of his mob characters, with hints of Raging Bull, minus the pathology. EDIT
Posted Nov 13, 2019
Klaus (2019) Janet Smith A gritty origin story probably isn't on a lot of people's wish list this holiday season. EDIT
Posted Nov 6, 2019
Tel Aviv on Fire (2018) Ken Eisner Fortunately, it adds solid comedy to the dynamic, aided by terrific actors familiar from all types of international productions. EDIT
Posted Nov 4, 2019
Jojo Rabbit (2019) Ken Eisner All the kids are great, though, and there are plenty of quirky bits. EDIT
Posted Nov 4, 2019
The Body Remembers When the World Broke Open (2019) Ken Eisner It offers a daring kind of storytelling. EDIT
Posted Oct 31, 2019
The King (2019) Janet Smith It's brutal, deglamorized, and horrifyingly spectacular. EDIT
Posted Oct 31, 2019
Harriet (2019) Ken Eisner By reinforcing her mystical qualities, it undermines her stunning efficacy as a real person who simply, and fiercely, had the courage to act. EDIT
Posted Oct 31, 2019
Dolor y gloria (2019) Ken Eisner What's most impressive here is the quietly amusing way Banderas conveys both the agony and ecstasy of his situation. EDIT
Posted Oct 30, 2019
Parasite (2019) Ken Eisner Parasite radically shifts tones over its wildly entertaining two-hour-plus running time. EDIT
Posted Oct 23, 2019
The Lighthouse (2019) Ken Eisner Powerful images and even more potent acting are the hallmarks of The Lighthouse. EDIT
Posted Oct 23, 2019
Before You Know It (2019) Ken Eisner They turn a potentially complex family journey into silly farce and still expect you to care. EDIT
Posted Oct 17, 2019