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Showing posts from May, 2011

Inside Out: Are You a Loose Cannon?

Inside Out LGBT Film and Video Festival kicked off last night with Loose Cannons (Mine Vaganti) a wonderfully comic family drama by Ferzan Ozpetek (Ignorant Fairies; Saturn in Opposition). The film centres around Tommaso, the second son of a prominent pasta-making family in Puglia. Intent on announcing his homosexuality at family business dinner, Tommaso is forced to remain closeted when, at the same dinner, his brother is disowned and his father has a heart attack. Past and present are linked in the characters of Tommasso and his grandmother, La Nonna (played by the extraordinary Ilaria Occhini). Most of the story is set in the present, but through dialogue and short flashback sequences of La Nonna as a bride we come to understand the nature of love and the need to live one's life on one's own terms. For those of you who missed the Toronto premiere of this delightful and incisive film, Mongrel Media will be releasing it theatrically in a few months. Watch for it!

World's B…

Pata Pata

So many of you have been asking me what I saw at Hot Docs 2011, and what was my favourite film. Well, I saw 32 films: 29 feature documentaries and 3 shorts. This year's festival had a bumper crop of good to extraordinary films, so choosing my favourite wasn't easy. I should let you know that my criteria for "favourite" is highly personal. What I select may not be the best documentary made. My favourites are films that resonate with me, that had an impact at the time of the screening and that stayed with me long after the festival was over. Well, I've made my Top Ten List (in green) and want you to leave comments with your own favourites, so please share your thoughts. My number one favourite film is Mama Africa, the documentary about the life and career of singer, political/human rights activist Miriam Makeba(pictured left) directed by one of my favourite directors, Mika Kaurismäki.

1. A Simple Rhythm
2. Beats, Rhymes & Life: The Travels of A Tribe Called Que…

Hot Docs: What's On for Saturday

Here are my thoughts are some of the films that I have seen that play again this week-end. For complete details visit or call 416-637-5150 The festival runs until Sunday, May 8th.

Screening Saturday, May 7th (various venues)

The Chocolate Farmer-Indigenous land rights, fascinating images of the Belize landscape and chocolate farming, and a family story about a man who wants to pass his knowledge on to the next generation, who don't seem to value what his love of the land that is linked to their culture and history.

Limelight: Peter Gatien owned four of the top nightclubs in the US, including the Limelight, a historic converted church that saw thousands of people dancing and interacting each night. The influx of Ecstasy broke down class barriers and drove the techno and hop hop music scenes. Peter ran his clubs like a business, not a partier. He employed hundreds of people and gave many musicians their starts (Madonna, Jay-Z, P-Diddy etc), but New York Mayor Gui…

Hot Docs: What's Your Favourite Film?

Have been having a sweet time at Hot Docs this year with most of my films rating 3 and above out of a possible 5. Which reminds me, when you go to Hot Docs, keep you ticket stub because that's how you vote for Audience Favourite. The back of your ticket is a ballot with a range of 1-5 (five being the highest rating). Just rip through the rating you want to give the film and when you come out of the theatre drop it in the box that the volunteers are holding. Do take the time to vote if you want your film to win. Each vote does count and benefits the director. Audience Favourite means a lot to them and their careers! So, what's your favourite film so far. Click the "comment" tab and follow the prompts. Happy Hot Doc-ing!

Hot Docs Canadian International Documentary Festival
Runs until May 8th

Hot Docs: An Interview With Linda Goldstein Knowlton (Somewhere Between)

Somewhere Between
Linda Goldstein Knowlton
Screenings: May 1 and May 3 screenings
Tickets/Info: or 416-637-5150

donna g: Unlike other adoption films that I have seen, this one is different in the fact that these girls were given away, placed, abandoned (however you want to label it) because of gender. In watching the film, I was impacted strongly by this particular and painful detail. The four girls in Somewhere Between deal with this issue in very different ways. Did you choose the girls based on their varying response to this aspect of their adoption, or did you choose them based on their geographic locations, age? Could you please comment on how you chose Fang, Haley, Ann and Jenna?

Linda Goldstein Knowlton: While all of the girls adopted from China share a certain elemental experience, we all know that everyone is unique and develops their identity in individual ways. With this film, I wanted to be able to share a representation of the commonalities and …