It’s Only The End of The World [SFF2016]

 2016, Festivals, Reviews, Sydney Film Festival  Comments Off on It’s Only The End of The World [SFF2016]
Jun 152016


Xavier Dolan, the 27-year old French-Canadian filmmaker with prodigious talent and a handful of brilliant films under his belt (including the 2014 Jury Prize winner, Mommy), returned to Cannes this year with the understandably anticipated It’s Only the End of the World. Despite being met with boos and largely negative reviews, it was surprisingly awarded the prestigious Grand Prix prize. While it is a flawed film, it certainly doesn’t deserve that vitriolic reception. There is still a lot to like about this emotionally intense – and often excruciatingly shrill – but stylistically restrained family drama, adapted by Dolan from an eponymous play by Jean-Luc Lagarce.

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Possible Worlds Film Festival 2014

 Festivals, Possible Worlds  Comments Off on Possible Worlds Film Festival 2014
Jul 042014


The programme has been announced for the 9th annual Possible Worlds Film Festival & tickets are now on sale.

This year, festival curators have carefully chosen 18 feature films – 9 from Canada and 9 from the USA – that will enrich, excite and enlighten. The program will screen at Event Cinemas on George Street from August 7th to the 17th, ahead of satellite events in Canberra (August 20th) and Perth (August 22nd to 24th) which will screen selected titles.

“With one world première and thirteen Australian premieres, we have put together a Festival that focuses on discoveries; on introducing new films to Australian audiences,” explains Festival Director Mathieu Ravier. “Possible Worlds is a rare opportunity to take back the multiplex and showcase the vibrant visions of independent filmmakers working outside of Hollywood.”

Opening Night on August 7th will première Ricardo Trogi’s hilarious coming-of-age comedy 1987, a day before the film opens in Canada. The film will be one of five French-language films from the region.

A highlight of the programme is French Canadian filmmaker Xavier Dolan’s Tom At The Farm (reviewed here), an intense thriller with a fantastic performance from Dolan himself. Dolan also features in Miraculum, a critically acclaimed drama about the intertwined destinies of eight Montrealers on the cusp of life-changing decisions.

We don’t want to miss The Grand Seduction, starring Brendon Glesson (The Guard, Calvary) and Taylor Kistch (Friday Night Lights), a comedy about a remote fishing village in desperate need of a resident doctor and the outlandish lengths they will go to in order to secure him.  Also not to be missed is Faults starring the always amazing Mary Elizabeth Winstead, a thriller in which attempts are made to deprogramme a young woman under the grip of a mysterious cult.

If documentaries are more your thing, how about one about the wonderful new sport of air sex. No, this is not a mokumenatary. Air Sex: The Movie will give you an insightful look into the pastime you never knew existed out of teenage bedrooms….

To buy tickets and for information about the full line-up, please visit the official festival website.
You can also follow the festival on Twitter & Facebook.

Tom at the Farm

 2014, Festivals, Reviews, Sydney Film Festival  Comments Off on Tom at the Farm
Jun 062014


French-Canadian filmmaker Xavier Dolan has proven that knows how to create incredibly stylish films which drip with sophistication and emotion. He takes a different direction with Tom at the Farm, a psychological thriller as unnerving as it is clever. My review after the jump.

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2013 Possible Worlds Film Festival Line-up Announced

 Festivals, News, Possible Worlds  Comments Off on 2013 Possible Worlds Film Festival Line-up Announced
Jul 082013


The eighth annual Possible Worlds Film Festival has revealed its 2013 program showcasing the best new cinema from Canada and the United States, and focusing exclusively on independent films.

Presented by Cosmos Tours and non-profit The Festivalists, the festival brings 20 new feature films ­ ten Canadian and ten American – playing at  Dendy Opera Quays and Dendy Newtown from 8th to 18th August. Selected titles will also screen at ARC Cinema (Canberra) from 21st to 23rd August 2013.

In Sydney, the Festival will open with Sarah Polley¹s acclaimed documentary Stories We Tell and close ten days later with Sydney premiere of Joe Swanberg’s Drinking Buddies, starring Olivia Wilde, Anna Kendrick, Jake Johnson and Ron Livingston.

A strong thematic strand within the program this year is the female point of view, with ten titles featuring a woman in the lead and charting female perspectives on identity, desire, sexuality, success and family, such as black and white gems Frances Ha by Noah Baumbach and You Make Me Feel So Young (Australian première) by Zach Weintraub. Four of these films, Molly Maxwell (Australian première), Stories We Tell, A Teacher (International première) and It Felt Like Love (Sydney première) are directed by women.

Other highlights include a 40th anniversary screening of the cult sci-fi thriller Westworld, US indie comedy-drama Gimme The Loop, which played at this year’s Cannes Film Festival (Un Certain Regard section) and VHS documentary Rewind This!

A nice bonus for festival goers is the fact that many screenings will include a complimentary welcome drink on arrival.

For information about all of the fantastic films on offer and to find out how to book tickets, visit the official festival website:

2013 Alliance Française French Film Festival Tickets Now on Sale

 Festivals  Comments Off on 2013 Alliance Française French Film Festival Tickets Now on Sale
Jan 312013

french film festival 2013

The 24th annual Alliance Française French Film Festival will return to Palace Cinemas (Sydney, Melbourne, Canberra, Brisbane, Adelade & Perth) during March and April this year with a selection of 43 films and documentaries.

Foodies take note! The gastronomic delight, Haute Cuisine (Les Saveurs du Palais), screening courtesy of Transmission Films, will launch the Festival’s gala opening in Sydney on Tuesday 5 March with celebrated chef, Gabriel Gaté as the evening’s compère in the presence of Danièle Mazet-Delpeuch, the Festival’s guest-of-honour.

Presented by the Alliance Française in association with the Embassy of France in Australia and the gracious support of Gold Sponsor Peugeot, the 24th Festival’s extensive highlights (many of which have received 2013 César Award nominations), include After May, Augustine, The Big Night, Camille Rewinds, Ernest & Celestine, Farewell My Queen, FEU by Christian Louboutin, Happiness Never Comes Alone, In the House, The Invisibles, Journal de France, Louise Wimmer, The Man Who Laughs, Our Children, Renoir, Sister, Thérèse Desqueyroux, and a restored version of Marcel Carné’s 1945 masterpiece, Children of Paradise (Les Enfants du Paradis), which will screen on closing night.

I am personally most excited about French Canadian film-maker Xavier Dolan’s Laurence Anways, which I have wanted to see for months.

Tickets for all locations are on sale now! For further information about Palace cinema locations, the great array of films screening and tickets, please visit the official festival website:

For a taste of what is on offer, check out the trailer for Laurence Anways below.

By Sam McCosh

Bon Cop Bad Cop

 2012, Festivals, Possible Worlds, Reviews  Comments Off on Bon Cop Bad Cop
Jul 212012

Good Cop Bon Cop

The focus on Canadian films in July continues, with this guest review of Bon Cop Bad Cop by freelance writer and film-lover, Jordi Kerr. Thank you very much Jordi for your excellent contribution! Check out Jordi’s review of Canadian action-comedy film Bon Cop Bad Cop (Good Cop Bad Cop) after the jump.

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The Films of Denis Villeneuve – Maelstrom/Polytechnique

 Opinion Pieces, Reviews  Comments Off on The Films of Denis Villeneuve – Maelstrom/Polytechnique
Jul 102012

polytechnique_2009As part of my July focus on Canadian films, Sydney reviewer Andrew Buckle of The Film Emporium has kindly provided his thoughts on two films from director Denis Villeneuve – Maelstrom and Polytechnique.

Andrew has reviewed a number of films from the ‘Possible Worlds – Top 100 Canadian Films list, which inspired my focus on Canadian films this month. I strongly encourage you to check out his thoughts on the following films (click on the film title to go to Andrew’s review):

Cafe De Flore
Monsieur Lazhar 
Naked Lunch/Crash 
Take This Waltz
Tucker and Dale Vs. Evil


After the jump, check out Andrew’s thoughts on Maelstrom and Polytechnique.

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Possible Worlds 2012 Canadian Film Festival Line-up Announced

 2012, Festivals, News, Possible Worlds  Comments Off on Possible Worlds 2012 Canadian Film Festival Line-up Announced
Jul 062012

starbuckPossible Worlds (who inspired my Canadian film month with their Top 100 Canadian Films list) have just announced the film line-up for Australia’s 7th Canadian Film Festival. The Festival will showcase 20 of the best new Canadian feature films at Dendy Opera Quays and Dendy Newtown from 13th to 19th August 2012. Selected titles will also screen at the University of Wollongong and the ARC cinema in Canberra. More details after the jump!

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