Film Friday: Wild Hog Groan
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Film Friday: Wild Hog Groan

2007_03_02_storm.jpgThis week our attention is almost completely owned by Cinematheque Ontario’s offerings, even with the thought of Christina Ricci chained to a radiator in Black Snake Moan grasping at us.
Not only are Cinematheque Ontario hosting the Human Rights Watch International Film Festival, they’re also showing From the Tsars to the Stars, a series of Russian sci-fi. How awesome is that? (There’s more to Russian sci-fi than just Solaris, doubters.) Maybe they’ll do a season of Mexican sci-fi next if we ask nicely.
The Human Rights Watch International Film Festival opens with Mon Colonel tonight at 8:30 p.m.; other picks include Pavee Lackeen on Sunday at 3 p.m. The Russian sci-fi hits with the short The Cameraman’s Revenge followed by Planet Of Storms on Sunday at 1 p.m., and continues with To The Stars By Hard Ways on Monday at 6:30 p.m. Oh, and don’t forget that they’re showing a matinee of The Searchers this Saturday at 2 p.m. All showings at Jackman Hall, AGO, 317 Dundas Street West. (The image is from Planet Of Storms, FYI.)
Other festivals running this week are the the University of Toronto Film Festival, which has the best of student flicks tonight at 7 p.m., at Hart House Theatre (7 Hart House Circle) and the Si Si Cine Toronto Latin Film Festival, which includes the premiere of Sefarad: “Caminos y vida”, Reencuentro Le&#243n, dedicated to the history of the Jewish presence in Spain, on Sunday, March 4th at 4:30 p.m. (all screenings at the Bloor, 506 Bloor Street West).
Also at the Bloor this week is this month’s Doc Soup showing, Jonestown: The Life And Death Of Peoples Temple, at 6:30 & 9:15 p.m. this Wednesday.
2007_03_02_snake.jpgAt the Royal (608 College), Tsui Hark’s poorly received Seven Swords starts tonight at 9 p.m., and Missing Victor Pellerin, preceded by Oscar-winning short The Danish Poet starts tomorrow at 7 p.m. Missing Victor Pellerin also seemed to please NOW’s John Harkness (“A peculiarly brilliant work that I need to see again”) and hey, that’s about as hard to do as winning an Oscar.
Finally we can turn to poor Christina Ricci. Shocking of us to make her wait, lying there chained to a radiator in her underwear. Unfortunately, Black Snake Moan doesn’t sound as brain meltingly fantastic as such lurid images would have us suppose. Eye’s Jason Anderson gives the deepest analysis of the film of the week, arguing that Samuel L. Jackson’s character serves “the time-honoured movie role of the ‘magical negro’” (but that the film is still okay).
Something quite obviously not okay is Wild Hogs. We could riff on how awful it sounds (and how much we despise Martin Lawrence) but the Sun’s Liz Braun is viciously funny in tearing it apart. “There’s only so hard you can laugh,” she states, “before your sides ache and your head throbs and you start to entertain thoughts of looking up the screenwriter’s home address and maybe paying him a little visit with a blunt instrument.”
David Fincher’s Zodiac is hotly anticipated by some, and it seems likely that they won’t be disappointed, with Geoff Pevere from the Star calling it “the director’s most accomplished movie.” We refuse to believe it can possibly be better than Fight Club, but, okay!

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