Author: Katie O'Connor

Inside Out 2016 Review: Last Men Standing

Last Men Standing is a film that looks at the lives of eight men living HIV positive. These men were a part of the sexual revolution in San Francisco in the 1970s. The gay community flourished during this time in this particular locale, filled with love, friendship and a freedom of sexual expression. This gay culture these men had become so intimately apart of was destroyed by the AIDS epidemic which during this time plagued gay communities and the general population. The film takes a candid and remarkable look at these men who have lost friends and lovers to AIDS, while at...

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Review: À La Vie

À La Vie (To Life) is the story of three women who survived the holocaust and have not seen each other since the war. In 1960, they find each other and reunite in Berck-Plague. Hélène (Julie Depardieu, daughter of Gérard Depardieu), Rose (Suzanne Clément, Mommy), and Lili (Johanna ter Steege) dine together, they have their first ice cream together and go for their first swim. Their time together is not taken up reflecting on their experiences in the camps but coming together through love and friendship. À La Vie was originally released as a French drama in 2014. Director and co-writer, Jean...

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Toronto Jewish Film Festival 2016 Review: Thank You For Calling

Thank You For Calling is based on the true story of notorious con man, Gilbert Chikli. Chikli scammed over 30 international banks and companies in France out of millions by passing himself off as CEO, president or an intelligence agent. As an audience, we are formally introduced to his con artist techniques and tactics right off the bat. The film follows Gilbert Perez (Vincent Elbaz), a con artist who convinces employees of large French financial institutions into stealing money from their employers. Perez flees to a French community in Tel Aviv where we see his cons become increasingly more impulsive and devious. This...

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Toronto Jewish Film Festival 2016: The Tenth Man

The Tenth Man follows a man named, Ariel (Alan Sabbagh) whose life is controlled over by the phone by his father, Usher (Usher Barilka). Ariel is a New York based economist by profession. He returns to El Once, which is an old Jewish community in Buenos Aires, to assist his father with his business. His father owns a charitable organization that looks after those in need in the community. The film cleverly follows Ariel over the course of seven days as his father directs him to assist with the organization and run errands for him. One of the more fascinating...

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Hot Docs 2016 Review: Gun Runners

Gun Runners is an inspiring and incredible story which follows two notorious warriors and former cattle rustlers in Northern Kenya who give up their weapons to run in marathons. As part of a government sponsored program to disarm in conflict heavy regions, these once notorious warriors are given a chance to pursue their dreams of becoming professional marathon runners. The film follows Matanda and Arile, who are looking to put their violent pasts behind them and pursue a positive path that will benefit the future of their family, livelihood and this conflict ridden region of Kenya. The audience is...

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Hot Docs 2016 Review: The Infinite Flight of Days

The Infinite Flight of Days is a beautiful film about the immense role religion, family, and love plays in the lives of a group of women living in a small village in the Andes. The film begins with a smoothly edited montage of each woman we will meet throughout the course of the film getting ready for the day by applying makeup. Set in the Andes in a small village named Jericó, we are introduced to a generation of women who tell us their stories through their rich histories. We are treated to an extraordinary soundtrack and shots of the colourful...

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Hot Docs 2016 Review: Quebec My Country Mon Pays

Quebec My Country Mon Pays follows an Anglophone, John Walker, during Quebec’s Quiet Revolution. Walker watches as the province becomes divided through an impacting social, political and cultural shift. During this time of upheaval, over 500,000 Anglophone Quebecers left Quebec and moved to Toronto. Walker was one of the thousands of Quebecers to leave their home province. Directed by Walker himself, the audience will experience an unflinching first hand look at the trials and tribulations which were faced by hundreds and thousands of Quebec citizens in one of Canada’s most striking historical events. Interviews throughout the film pay attention...

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