Tagged Comedy

Brittany Runs a Marathon (Colaizzo, 2019)

As someone who is plus-sized in the way Brittany (Jillian Bell) is, I do appreciate a film like this coming along and contending with the inherent messiness of body positivity, particularly the idea of being happy with your image while also recognizing that losing weight is important for your longevity. Cognitively, there is a dissonance…

TIFF Review: The Whistlers (Porumboiu, 2019)

I would not call The Whistlers one of the best entries in the emerging Romanian New Wave canon, though that doesn’t take away from what Corneliu Porumboiu does well. His darkly acerbic humour migrates from his previous works, this film being particularly reminiscent of Police, Adjective in the way he revisits the crime genre and continues to…

TIFF Review: The Personal History of David Copperfield (Iannucci, 2019)

Dickens enthusiasts can breathe a sigh of relief: Armando Iannucci has not turned their beloved novel into an R-rated barrage of f-bombs, a trait which has so defined his filmmaking career that one of the audience members at my screening referred to it as making “symphony from swears.” This is his family-friendly gift to the…

TIFF Review: To the Ends of the Earth (Kurosawa, 2019)

I do not know exactly why the main character in Kiyoshi Kurosawa’s To the Ends of the Earth sings the Japanese version of Édith Piaf’s “L’hymne à l’amour” not once, but twice, though I can venture a good guess. Yoko (Atsuko Maeda) professes late into the film that her dream career is to be a singer…

TIFF Review: About Endlessness (Andersson, 2019)

The uniquely absurd and painterly vision of Roy Andersson is unlike any other in contemporary cinema, so it is always an event when the director brings out a new work to share with neophytes and admirers alike. About Endlessness (which recently netted him the Silver Lion at the Venice Film Festival) is, much like his…

TIFF Review: The Truth (Kore-eda, 2019)

Hirokazu Kore-eda broke his long tradition of attending TIFF premieres last year for Shoplifters because he was busy preparing The Truth—his first film made and set outside of Japan, with an international cast that includes screen titans Catherine Deneuve, Juliette Binoche and Ethan Hawke. A recipe, by all accounts, for success after his Palme d’Or glory. And…

The Beach Bum (Korine, 2019)

When you hear the call of Harmony Korine, you are likely to either turn away or heed it. I can understand why some impulsively have no interest in him, especially considering the uncompromising oddness of his earlier works, which repulse as much as they fascinate with their brazen crudity and abject shocks to the system.…

Once Upon a Time in… Hollywood (Tarantino, 2019)

Please note that this review includes spoilers about the film’s conclusion. Fairy tales are the spaces in which our childhoods dream. Their worlds are enormous in their specificity, for the greater the specificity, the greater our imaginations roam free. They contain both the mystical and the practical. They use the lives of people far above…

Yesterday (Boyle, 2019)

The premise of Yesterday works in some respects. Imagining a world without a particular cultural commodity, with all its associated prestige and iconography, can yield intriguing implications—especially if a few select people still know such a commodity once existed. The route Yesterday takes is the easiest: what if one of those people assumed creatorship of the commodity and reaped…

Weekly Spotlight #12: Hellzapoppin’ (Potter, 1941)

In this weekly series, The Lonely Film Critic highlights an older release of interest, whether it be an oft-overlooked gem or a classic worth revisiting. This week, it’s back to the 1940s with our zaniest selection yet: a vaudeville revue that takes audience participation to a whole new level.

Murder Mystery (Newacheck, 2019)

I’ve gobbled up my fair share of mystery novels when I was growing up. I still do, on occasion. I even took a class on detective novels in university because I thought it’d be fun. So this latest Netflix original was kind of irresistible to me, since it promised to pay homage to a genre…

Aladdin (Ritchie, 2019)

It is quite the relief when a movie that has been beleaguered with terrible promotion turns out to be better than expected. And let me tell you, Guy Ritchie’s Aladdin instilled no confidence before its release date. When Will Smith’s buff and blue Genie was finally unveiled to a flurry of online backlash and mockery, I couldn’t…

Booksmart (Wilde, 2019)

Social media has been abuzz with debates about Olivia Wilde’s debut, from its marketing campaign to its struggle to make gains at the box office to questions about its diversity (or lack thereof). I want to review Booksmart on its own terms, so forgive me if what I write doesn’t substantially contribute to the current discourse. I’d…

Poms (Hayes, 2019)

Anyone who watches Poms will manage to crack a smile a few times, even if they recognize internally that they’re smiling at shtick that isn’t particularly intelligent. It’s humour that’s meant to be broad and instantly digestible, like one punchline early on that explains why a woman got second place at a talent contest in the ‘50s…

The Upside (Burger, 2017)

I have a dim recollection of The Intouchables, the original film on which The Upside is based. I remember liking it for being both heartwarming and funny, but after many years and several hundreds of films later, I would probably look at it more critically if I were to watch it again. Which I won’t, because The Upside is more…