Your neighbour knocks on your door in a panic. “Quick,” they exclaim. “I just found out about National Canadian Film Day. I really want to participate but I’m not that into movies. What should I watch?”
Never fear, dear neighbour. We’ve got the top picks from top Toronto critics and film writers, selected specifically for your very nice non-cinephile neighbour.
BON COP BAD COP — this cross-cultural blockbuster comedy about a cop from Ontario (Colm Feore) who must team up with a cop from Quebec (Patrick Houard) to solve a murder, received votes from NOW Magazine’s Susan G. Cole and The National Post’s Chris Knight. With the sequel, BON COP BAD COP 2, coming to theatres in May, now is the perfect time to catch up on the original. “It’s fun and doesn’t make you think too much, and it features Patrick Huard and Colm Feore — two of Canada’s greatest actors — not taking themselves too seriously”, says Cole of her pick.
Another just-pure-fun recommendation came from CBC’s Eli Glasner, who thought FUBAR would be the perfect pick. “Pop in the blu-ray and just give’r! Dudes and dude-ettes will be too busy chuckling at the headbanging lifestyle of Terry and Dean to realise it’s a tour-de-force of comic improv with surprising heart.” And if you love the original, make it a double bill with 2010’s FUBAR II, which catches up with Terry and Dean eight years later.
Other crowd-pleasers include the hilarious sports-comedy GOON (which also coincidentally has a sequel out in cinemas right now), recommended by ScreenAnarchy.com’s Jason Gorber, and the touching coming of age story C.R.A.Z.Y. (by Academy-Award nominated director Jean-Marc Vallée), which NOW Magazine’s Norm Wilner says he recommends to everyone.
Geoff Pevere, critic and Program Director of the Rendezvous with Madness Film Festival, thought his neighbour might enjoy the 1974 horror classic BLACK CHRISTMAS, about a group of sorority girls terrorized during the holidays by menacing phone calls that quickly turn to murder. It also boasts one of the best trailer taglines of all time: “if this movie doesn’t make your skin crawl … it’s on too tight”. We’re not sure who Geoff’s neighbours are but we hope they’re still talking to him after they watch this one!
Kiva Reardon (editor of feminist film journal cléo) thinks her neighbour should learn something while being entertained. She recommends Alethea Arnaquq-Baril’s documentary ANGRY INUK, because “everyone — everyone should see this movie”. We’ve got 48 screenings of the film confirmed in various venues across Canada and internationally on National Canadian Film Day, so we (and many others) definitely agree.
Peter Howell of the Toronto Star wanted to show his neighbour that “arthouse” and “thriller” don’t have to be mutually exclusive, and “that Canadian films are as good or better than any Hollywood creation”, so he selected Denis Villeneuve’s brilliant, heart-stopping INCENDIES.
Barry Hertz of The Globe and Mail knows his neighbour (“Hi, Jason!”) and wanted to suggest MONSIEUR LAZHAR to him, “because nearly everyone, regardless of tastes or sensibilities, will get swept up in Falardeau’s emotional narrative.” Good pick, Barry. (We hope you like it, Jason.)
One critic who also happens to be a filmmaker and producer in his own right suggested a film he produced himself. Greg Klymkiw’s pick is Guy Maddin’s early black & white film ARCHANGEL, because he loves the idea “of non-cinephiles scratching their noggins all the way through it.” If you’re looking for a recommendation that will be truly unlike anything you’ve ever seen before, this one’s for you.