Tag: Cancon

Hookers, Vice Squads, and Prettykills: the Sensationalized vs. the Gritty

Hookers, Vice Squads, and Prettykills: the Sensationalized vs. the Gritty

October 30, 2017 | By

A quartet of films with differing tales of prostitutes & vice squads: Janice Cole & Holly Dale’s Hookers on Davie (1984), Gary Sherman’s uber-nasty Vice Squad (1982), Penelope Spheeris’s Hollywood Vice Squad (1986), and George Kaczender’s Prettykill / Tomorrow’s Killer (1987).

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DVD: Hookers on Davie / Working on Davie Street (1984)

DVD: Hookers on Davie / Working on Davie Street (1984)

October 30, 2017 | By

During the early 1980s, Janice Cole and Holly Dale directed a pivotal documentary on prostitution in Canada, with their gritty 16mm camera trained on Vancouver’s Davie Street, branded in the film’s prologue as “the prostitution capitol of Canada”…

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Film: Prettykill / Tomorrow’s Killer (1987)

Film: Prettykill / Tomorrow’s Killer (1987)

October 30, 2017 | By

After the launch of Pay TV stations in the U.S. and soon after Canada, the 1980s became cluttered with direct to video and straight to cable films, most being highly disposable productions designed to fill a time slot and video rental rack than stand out among the crowd…

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Comrade Detective’s Joe Kraemer and the Art of the Satire

Comrade Detective’s Joe Kraemer and the Art of the Satire

September 27, 2017 | By

In my latest podcast, composer Joe Kraemer discusses the fine art of scoring satire for the Amazon exclusive series Comrade Detective: Season 1 + King Cohen: The Wild World of Filmmaker Larry Cohen, and more!

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DVD: Funny Farm, The (1983)

DVD: Funny Farm, The (1983)

August 19, 2017 | By

Not to be confused in any way with the 1988 Chevy Chase film, this CanCon production predated the Tom Hanks drama Punchline (also 1988) in examining the world of standup comedy, albeit through the lenses of goofy glasses. The cast of comedians is perhaps a key reason the film managed to sneak its way to DVD via Code Red, treating it with affection…

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Film: Gas (1981)

Film: Gas (1981)

August 19, 2017 | By

When the second oil crisis hit North America after the Iranian Revolution and supply was taken down a notch, causing  prices at the pump stations to balloon, a few filmmakers exploited the paranoia. Americathon (1979) poked fun at a broken U.S. economy, while the CanCon cult film The Last Chase (1981)…

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Film: Dirty Tricks (1981)

Film: Dirty Tricks (1981)

August 19, 2017 | By

There may have been an earnest effort to successfully translate Thomas Gifford’s novel “The Glendower Legacy” to the big screen, but perhaps by being a classic CanCon tax shelter production, that earnestness was severely diluted, with the final product being a dismal attempt at wacky comedy and political commentary…

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National Canadian Film Day (and Where Things Should Be By Now)

National Canadian Film Day (and Where Things Should Be By Now)

April 19, 2017 | By

The 3rd annual National Canadian Film Day, and more thoughts on where I’d hoped things would be in terms of accessible CanCon.

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Film: Kings and Desperate Men (1981)

Film: Kings and Desperate Men (1981)

May 2, 2016 | By

As co-writer/ director Alexis Kanner recounted in a live 1984 interview at Britain’s Institute of Contemporary Arts (ICA) Theatre, Edmund Ward’s original story and script needed a bit of goosing, transforming it from a TV-level hostage drama to something with greater feature film scope, but an assortment of challenges ultimately hindered…

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The Canadian Horror Film: Terror of the Soul — Book Signing Oct. 24

The Canadian Horror Film: Terror of the Soul — Book Signing Oct. 24

October 23, 2015 | By

Book signing alert: yours truly (plus other excellent writers) will be signing copies of the new U of T book “The Canadian Horror Film: Terror of the Soul” this Sat. Oct. 24 at the TIFF Bell Lightbox + imminent podcast details.

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