As a means of rounding up Toronto’s various cinematic goings-on each week, Movie Mondays compiles the best rep cinema and art house screenings, special presentations, lectures, and limited engagements.
The Royal, which’ll see Annie Hall on Monday evening.
TIFF‘s over, and it’s back to movie-going as usual around town. Which means some Woody Allen, second-run Scott Pilgrim, early Halloween spooks, and some sadistic Nazi-themed sexploitation.
Not to make generalizations about precisely what generation our readers are in, but for our generation, the movie to tackle the woes of contemporary relationships was Michel Gondry’s Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind. With its rinse-repeat look at breaking-up, making-up, and moving on, Sunshine was a contemporary, sci-fi tinged update of Woody Allen’s Annie Hall. Though he’s now pretty much terrible, Woody Allen used to be able to make good movies. And Annie Hall is one of his best. Marking Allen’s move from kookier comedies like What’s Up, Tiger Lily? and Bananas, Annie Hall told the story of a tightly wound comedian (Allen) and his relationship with the film’s titular proto-manic pixie (Dianne Keaton). Besides signalling to two generations of young women that it’s okay for girls to wear wide neckties, drooping hats, and date ugly neurotics, Annie Hall also taught us all that no matter how much we may want a relationship to work, sometimes people are just incompatible.
The Royal (608 College Street) is screening Annie Hall Monday at 7 p.m., and it’s well worth checking out if you want to see how your parents’ generation did romantic tragicomedies. And also if you want to see how Woody Allen once did good movies.
So Scott Pilgrim kind of floundered at the box office, which is sort of too bad. But who cares, right? I mean, do we Torontonians really care if people in Hibbing, Minnesota and Rochester, New York didn’t see it? It’s ours! Let’s claim complete ownership over it the same way New Yorkers did New York Minute. Because Scott Pilgrim is rad as hell. And now that it’s entering its second run, we can really seize it, ensuring that even though it never became the big summer blockbuster it set out to be, it can be the cult film it always secretly knew it was meant to be. So get into it! Cut out of work early to see Scott Pilgrim vs. the World, Tuesday at 4:30 p.m. at The Bloor (506 Bloor Street West).
It’s late September. And you know what that means? It’s almost October! And you know what that means? It’s almost Halloween!
The leaves are withering and dying; people are carving pumpkins; ghosts, ghouls, and other ghastlies are turning around restlessly in their graves or crypts; innocents are being snatched off the street by one-or-another supernatural serial killer: it’s the perfect time of year for scary movies. And if you want to get a head start on your annual cinematic spook-tacular, head to The Fox (2236 Queen Street East) this Thursday at 7 p.m. for Screamfest 2010. Hosted by direct-to-video starlet Veronika London (touted by her own website as “The Megan Fox of Hollywood North!”), this year’s Screamfest collects a handful of shorts dealing with everything from self-mutilation to emotionally numbed teens set to screen before Adam Green’s 2009 chairlift thriller Frozen, starring Megacity native Shawn Ashmore.
Canada has a really strong history of nurturing cruddy movies. Back in the days before the tax shelter spurred our own industry of crappy genre films, Canadian audiences were starved for B-movie entertainment. Which is why it kind of makes sense that the weird subgenre of Nazisploitation films would prove so popular.
When the WWII women-in-prison picture Love Camp 7 proved to be a big hit in Canada, a few Cinepix honchos quickly threw together a script for what would become Ilsa, She Wolf of the SS. Bankrolled by legendary exploitation producer David F. Friedman, and filmed on the abandoned set of Hogan’s Heroes, Ilsa explores sadistic scientific sex research conducted at a Nazi P.O.W. camp under the heel of the titular buxom commandant. Hypersexual, stupid, and a whole lot of tasteless fun, Ilsa proves that not even the legacy of Third Reich violence is safe from the anything-for-a-buck machinations of exploitation cinema. The Toronto Underground Cinema (185 Spadina Avenue) gets exploitative Friday at 9:30 p.m. with Ilsa, She Wolf of the SS.
Photos by Eugen Sakhnenko/Torontoist.