Tag: Documentary

Abu is Underdeveloped Ambition

Overview: Canadian-Pakistani documentarian Arshad Khan recounts his difficult upbringing as a gay Muslim in a fundamentalist immigrant home. TCDM Associates; 2017; Not Yet Rated; 80 minutes. So Close Yet So Far: The most objective documentaries are always the hardest ones to review. Stripped of any kind of creative stamp or focus other than the dry regurgitation of facts, interviews, or images, it’s nearly impossible to review them without simply recounting everything that was shown or said like you were writing lecture notes. At a glance, Arshad Khan’s Abu should be the exact opposite: it’s an intimate recounting of the...

Read More

Amazon Prime Hidden Gems: A Long Strange Trip

“Such a long, long time to be gone, and a short time to be there.” “Box of Rain,” The Grateful Dead The lyric above is the one that made me fall in love with the Grateful Dead; what a melancholy, powerful statement. Fifteen words summing up the human experience. Short time to be here, but a long time to be gone. How are we going to spend our time? It’s a big question, one I certainly did not have the answer to. But the idea that a song—alas, one line in a song– could challenge me in this way,...

Read More

Netflix Hidden Gem: Lost Soul: The Doomed Journey of Richard Stanley’s Island of Dr. Moreau

Lost Soul: The Doomed Journey of Richard Stanley’s Island of Dr Moreau covers the making of the disaster that was 1996’s The Island of Doctor Moreau. In movie circles, the story of how the movie went off the rails is probably more well-known than the plot of the actual movie. Richard Stanley, fresh off some weird, well-made horror movies, is given the chance to direct a movie of his favourite book, The Island of Doctor Moreau. Ill-preparedness, prima donna actors, divorces, suicides, hurricanes, anti-social behaviour, and floods all combine to get Stanley kicked off the project and replaced. Lost...

Read More

BLOTTER | JUNE 14, 2017

Hi, all. I have links, lists, and longreads to see you through the weekend, starting with The New York Times and their true crime summer reading picks. If you’re looking for crime of the fictional kind, they have that, too. Movies more your thing? Lately they are for me. Oxygen has a list of 10 true crime classics from the 80s, including I Know My First Name is Steven, which was responsible for a fair share of my middle school nightmares. As you may or may not remember, Steven’s brother later went on to become a serial killer. The...

Read More

New on Amazon Prime Instant Streaming: The Nightmare

Originally published on June 9, 2015. The Nightmare is now available on Amazon Prime’s instant streaming service. Overview: A combination of interviews and re-enactments regarding the experience of different individuals who suffer from sleep paralysis. Gravitas Ventures; Not Rated; 2015; 91 minutes. A Developing Form: There’s a moment in Room 237, Rodney Ascher’s first documentary that covers the elaborately insane interpretative readings from obsessive fans of Stanley Kubrick’s The Shining, where I had to step back and shake myself back to reality. Left alone with the preposterous, but uninterrupted, explanations with no measured string of factual information with which to weigh...

Read More