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Archive for May, 2012

Death of the Video Store?

An Article i wrote a month ago that caused quite the reaction!

Entertainment Maven

With the news a short time ago that Rogers has decided to pull out of the video rental marketplace Canada has found itself somewhere it has not been in decades, without a nation-wide video rental chain. This is a turn of events that most in the industry have seen coming for a while, but the question is whether it’s actually a step forward or a step backward for the industry. I must confess, being a former Blockbuster Canada employee, my opinion on this issue will be informed but also biased. That said, I am going to try to explore this issue from an open mind.

I can remember a 12 year-old version of myself excitedly making the long trek to the video store with money from my parents; finally able to pick out exactly what I wanted. The aisles of VHS tapes lining the store with covers that hinted at…

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Summer Movie Preview Part 1

Entertainment Maven

I know, I know. The Avengers has already broke records everywhere, and you’re doing a summer preview now? I must confess that I’m a bit of a traditionalist in that I feel the real summer season starts on Victoria Day in Canada/Memorial Day in the US. And since we recently had Victoria Day in Canada, it seems like as good a time as any for this article (ed – apologies, posting this a bit late). I’ll try to give indie/smaller releases their due along with the blockbusters. Ultimately, everything on here will be stuff that intrigues me…in either a good or bad way.

Ed – Two of the Movie Junkie’s picks already have reviews by him, MIB3 and Chernobyl Diaries.

JUNE

Piranha 3DD (June 1st)

The first Piranha (from 2010, not the James Cameron version I have yet to see) was a guilty pleasure. Will…

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Deer Hunter Review

Entertainment Maven

The Deer Hunter (1978)

Starring Robert DeNiro, Christopher Walken, John Savage, John Cazale and Meryl Streep.

Written by Michael Cimino, Deric Washburn, Louis Garfinkle and Quinn K. Redeker

Directed by Michael Cimino

During the calendar year of 2012 a variety of film bloggers and writers across the city of Toronto, including those at The Matinee, Toronto Screenshots and Eternal Sunshine of the Logical Mind, have been taking part in a yearlong series called “The Blind Spot Series”, where we as critics make a list of films that in one circle or another are deemed to be classics that we yet to see, and review them from the perspective of the first time viewer.  Well here at Entertainment Maven we felt like it was time to join in on the fun. For this month’s viewing I, the Movie Junkie, will be taking a look at the 1978 Academy Award…

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Men IN Black 3 Review

Entertainment Maven

Men In Black 3 (2012)

Starring Will Smith, Tommy Lee Jones, Josh Brolin, Jemaine Clement, Alice Eve and Emma Thompson.

Written by Etan Cohen

Directed by Barry Sonnenfeld

Will Smith returns after a decade to the role that cemented him as a mega-star, that of Agent J in Men In Black. Having come out a year after Independence Day, it was Men in Black with its fun and charming story of a brash young agent in training and the stoic and stubborn partner training him so he could retire, that started Smith onto a string of hits that would make him the most bankable star in Hollywood.  Well, its 15 years later and Smith’s J is still as wise cracking as ever and K is still not retired after being brought out of retirement in the dismal Men In Black 2. What antics will they get up to this time?

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Fright Nights: Viscera Film Festival

Entertainment Maven

Fright Nights at the Projection Booth

Viscera Short Film Festival, May 15th 2012

For Kelly Stewart’s May presentation of Fright Nights at the Projection Booth in Toronto he decided to do something different. Hooking up with Curio Media and Director/Producer Karen Lam, Kelly was able to bring the Viscera Film Festival to Canada for the first time ever! Viscera is a traveling festival of short genre based films directed by women that was created to inspire and forward the amount of women involved in genre filmmaking. To top it off, Kelly managed to pull together a three-woman panel of directors for a Q&A/panel discussion after the film as well. This panel included Lam herself, whose short Doll Parts was showing, Dara Jade Moats whose short Adventure Girls 3 was also showing, and Jovanka Vuckovic, a local filmmaker who is in the midst of directing her first feature. A…

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Little Terrors 9: Altered Reality

Entertainment Maven

Little Terrors 9 – Altered Reality

May 12th 2012, Projection Booth, Toronto

For the ninth edition of Justin McConnell’s Little Terrors series, Justin had a much harder time getting the night of genre shorts to the screen. Justin had some issues with clearance and ratings from the Film Board that needed to be sorted out before they could continue along. Once all the issues had been settled and the announcements made I very happily made the familiar jaunt down to the Projection Booth for the programme, on a rare Saturday night this time out, but I was still able to meet up with and converse with all the regulars. Also, fellow blogger over at The Horror Section, Jay Clarke, was going to debut his short ‘Orange’ this evening as well. Supporting another blogger’s project was a another great reason to attend.

Justin managed to put together another…

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Chernobyl Diaries Review

Entertainment Maven

Chernobyl Diaries (2012)

Staring Devin Kelley, Jonathan Sadowski, Jesse McCartney, Olivia Taylor Dudley, Dimitri Diatchenko, Nathan Phillips and Ingrid Bloso Berdal.

Written by Oren Peli, Shane Van Dyke and Carey Van Dyke

Directed by Bradley Parker

Back in 2007 writer/director/producer Oren Peli scared up massive box office returns and multiple sequels with his creepy little found-footage epic Paranormal Activity. Chernobyl Diaries marks the first post-Paranormal project we get from Peli, though for his next directorial effort we’ll have to wait for Area 51, due later this year. The question remains, will Paranormal Activity be the launching of a new talent, or will Peli’s name go down with the likes of M. Night Shyamalan – the once promising now mocked director of the Sixth Sense.

Chernobyl Diaries starts with a found-footage style montage of Chris (McCartney), his girlfriend Natalie (Dudley), and their friend Amanda (Kelley) as they make their way across…

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