Sunday, September 22, 2013

The Lunchbox (Dabba)

In brief: One of Mumbai’s miracles is Mumbai’s Dabbawallahs —a community of 5000 dabba (lunchbox) deliverymen. It is a hereditary profession. Every morning the Dabbawallahs deliver hot meals from the kitchens of housewives to the offices of their husbands, and then return the empty lunchboxes back to the homes in the afternoon. For 120 years they have provided Mumbaikars with a taste of home in the office. They navigate through the overcrowded local trains and chaotic streets—that often have a namesake or more than one name. The Dabbahwallahs are illiterate, and instead rely on a complex coding system of colors and symbols to deliver dabbas in the labyrinth that is Mumbai. Harvard University analyzed their delivery system, concluding that just 1 in 8 million lunchboxes is ever delivered to the wrong address. The Lunchbox is the story of that one lunchbox. Ramblings:

The Face of Love

In brief: Five years after losing the love her life, Nikki (Bening) falls in love first sight. Tom (Harris) is an art teacher with a kind heart and a great zest for life, but what he doesn't know is that he's also a near perfect double for Nikki's deceased husband. Seduced by the chance to live as if her husband was never lost, Nikki spirals into a fantasy of the present as past, while Tom must unravel the mystery behind her immediate and unconditional love. The Face of Love is a romance filled with intrigue, surprise, and reflections on the mystery of love. Ramblings:


In brief: Following the tremendous success of her 2006 documentary Manufactured Landscapes, critically acclaimed and award-winning Canadian filmmaker Jennifer Baichwal (Payback, Act of God) reunites with celebrated landscape photographer Edward Burtynsky for Watermark, a visually arresting and enlightening film documenting our engineered manipulation of water, and the far-reaching repercussions of abusing this valuable resource. Burtynsky’s breathtaking landscape photography is at the forefront of the film, as Baichwal investigates the role that water plays in cultures and industries in North America, Iceland, Asia and India. From the Ogallala Aquifer’s centre pivot irrigation systems in the US, to the chemical water pollution caused by India’s leather-processing industry, Watermark offers a vast exploration of water’s necessity in our global and economic survival while weaving together the various roles it plays in everyday life—and in environmental art. Ramblings:

Saturday, September 21, 2013

Thanks for Sharing

In brief: On the surface Adam (Ruffalo), an over-achieving environmental consultant, Mike (Robbins), a long-married small-business owner, and Neil (Gad), a wisecracking emergency-room doctor, have little in common. But all are in different stages of dealing with addiction. Confident and successful in his career, Adam is afraid to allow love back into his life, even if that means losing a chance to start over with smart, beautiful and accomplished Phoebe (Paltrow); Mike’s efforts to control his wife, Katie (Joely Richardson), and son, Danny (Patrick Fugit), as tightly as he does his impulses are tearing the family apart; and Neil is still deeply in denial when befriended by Dede (Moore), who has just begun to take her own small steps back to health. As they navigate the rocky shores of recovery, Adam, Mike and Neil become a family that encourages, infuriates and applauds each other on the journey toward a new life. Ramblings:

The Right Kind of Wrong

In brief: The Right Kind of Wrong tells the story of Leo Palamino (Kwanten), an eccentric would-be writer forced to wash dishes to make ends meet, and whose ex-wife (Kristen Hager) makes his many flaws public in a blog turned bestselling book entitled “Why You Suck”. When Leo meets Colette (Canning), the girl of his dreams at a wedding – HER wedding – he will do anything to win her over. And so the ultimate underdog love story begins in which Leo, a fearless dreamer, risks all to show Colette and the whole world all that is right with a man famous for being wrong. The Right Kind of Wrong is an adaptation of Tim Sandlin’s novel Sex and Sunsets and is directed by Jeremiah Chechik (Benny & Joon). Ramblings:

Good Vibrations

In brief: Terri Hooley (Dormer) is a radical, rebel and music-lover in 1970s Belfast, when the bloody conflict known as the Troubles shuts down his city. As all his friends take sides and take up arms, Terri opens a record shop on the most bombed half-mile in Europe and calls it “Good Vibrations”. Through it he discovers a compelling voice of resistance in the city’s nascent underground punk scene. Galvanising the young musicians into action, he becomes the unlikely leader of a motley band of kids and punks who join him in his mission to create a new community, an alternative ulster, to bring his city back to life. Ramblings:

The Armstrong Lie

In brief: Lance Armstrong was considered one of the greatest sports figures of all time and put competitive cycling into the global spotlight, by beating cancer and winning the Tour de France seven times. That success earned him an immense fortune and worldwide fame. His was also one of the most influential and inspiring sports stories of recent memory and became a pop culture phenomenon, thanks to his Livestrong initiative. Beginning in 2009, Academy Award winning documentarian Alex Gibney followed Armstrong for four years chronicling his return to cycling after retirement, as he tried to win his eighth title. Unexpectedly, Gibney was also there in 2012 when Armstrong admitted to doping, following a federal criminal investigation, public accusations of doping by his ex-teammates, and an investigation by the US Anti-Doping Agency, that led USADA's CEO, Travis Tygart, to conclude that Armstrong's team had run "the most sophisticated, professionalized and successful doping program that sport has ever seen." Ramblings:

Friday, September 20, 2013


In brief: This movie is based on a book called "Grandmothers." Naomi Watts and Robin Wright have known each other since childhood and each has a 19-year-old son. Advertised as: "Adore establishes an aura of fable as it follows two women’s plunge into uncharted waters."
Ramblings: Great scenery in New South Wales. Great acting. Beautiful people. Very soap opera-like. But enjoyable viewing. Not sure if it's a "fable" as advertised. Although it takes place over six years, none of the main cast age at all. For having lived in Australia all their lives, Wright and Watts have not much of an Aussie accent.


In brief: After sending away his 12 year-old son Siddharth (Khan) for work, Mahendra (Tailang) who is a chain-wallah who fixes broken zippers on the streets, is relieved – his financial burdens will be alleviated. To contribute to the family income, the boy is sent far away from home, from New Delhi to Ludhiana, where a relative has a job for him and a place to sleep. It seems like a dream come true to his father. But when Siddharth fails to return home, Mahendra learns he may have been taken by child-traffickers. With little resources and no connections, he travels across India in pursuit, with the hope that whatever force arbitrarily took his child away will return him unharmed. Ramblings:

Les 4 soldats

In brief: Once Civil War was declared, the military allied itself with the wealthy upper class in order to eliminate the opposition. The resulting chaos led to the demise of countless parents that left an entire generation of children to grow up without a family. It is within this context that Dominique meets Mateo (de la Cortina), quickly followed by Big Max (Bertrand) and Kevin (Schneider), who attaches himself to the newly-formed trio. Together, these four soldiers must deal with this war that has taken everything away from them, including their youth. When their regiment halts for a little R&R, their friendship becomes increasingly stronger and slowly builds towards recapturing the lost feeling of belonging to a family. Comfortably settled in their cabin or nonchalantly dipping their feet in a pond, they have rediscovered the tranquility of the good old days, a tranquility that is about to get shattered with the arrival of Gabriel (L'Écuyer), a new recruit they will have to train. Ramblings:


In brief: Today in North America, each of us unknowingly consumes genetically engineered food on a daily basis. While the risks and effects to our health and the environment are largely unknown, more and more studies only provide even more reason for concern. We are the oblivious guinea pigs for wide-scale experimentation of modern biotechnology. GMO OMG tells the story of a father’s discovery of GMOs in relationship to his three young children and the world around him. Ramblings:

Thursday, September 19, 2013


In brief: From producers Tom Hanks and Gary Goetzman, Parkland is the true story behind a tragic day in history you thought you knew, but didn’t, and couldn’t, until now…50 years later. November 22nd, 1963 was a day that changed the world forever – when young American President John F. Kennedy was assassinated in Dallas, Texas. We follow in almost real time a handful of individuals forced to make split-second decisions after this incomprehensible event that would change their lives and forever alter our world’s landscape: the young doctors and nurses at Parkland Hospital, the chief of the Dallas Secret Service, the unwitting cameraman who captured what has become the most watched and examined film in history, the FBI Agents who had gunman Lee Harvey Oswald within their grasp and Vice President Lyndon Johnson who had to take control of a country in a moment’s notice. Woven together, their seemingly disparate perspectives make one of the most thrilling and powerful stories never told. Ramblings:

Our Man in Tehran

In brief: Our Man in Tehran details the joint Canadian and CIA efforts to exfiltrate six Americans who escaped after being taken hostage during the Iranian revolution in 1979, and took refuge in the Canadian embassy. Interweaving archival footage, modernday interviews and verité encounters between former Ambassador Ken Taylor and other characters who were directly involved in the crisis, Our Man in Tehran provides a unique look at the true story behind the “Canadian Caper.” Ramblings:

Sunday, September 15, 2013

The Dinner

In brief: Adapting a Dutch bestseller inspired by a shocking real-life crime, Menno Meyjes (screenwriter of The Color Purple and Lionheart) directs this excoriating assessment of Europe’s contemporary social ills. Ramblings:

Stranger by the Lake

In brief: Winner of the best director prize in the Un Certain Regarde section at Cannes, Alain Guiraudie’s disciplined, eerie "naturalist thriller" follows the comings and goings at a lakeside gay cruising beach as a man falls for a lethally dangerous Adonis. Ramblings:


In brief: George Clooney and Sandra Bullock star in this highly anticipated 3D space thriller from acclaimed director Alfonso Cuarón (Children of Men, Y Tu Mamá También). Ramblings:

Tuesday, September 10, 2013


In brief: Joel Edgerton (The Great Gatsby) scripts and stars in this thriller about a decorated cop whose attempt to hide his complicity in a traffic accident makes him the target of a dogged investigator (Jai Courtney). Ramblings:

Tom at the Farm

In brief: This psychological thriller from Canada’s endlessly inventive and provocative Xavier Dolan (J'ai tué ma mere, Laurence Anyways) follows a grief-stricken young ad copywriter who visits his dead lover’s parents — only to get drawn into a savage game rooted in the rural family’s dark past. Ramblings:

The Disappearance of Eleanor Rigby: Her and Him

In brief: James McAvoy, Jessica Chastain and Viola Davis star in this innovative two-part film that relates a love story from two different perspectives. Ramblings:

The Militant

In brief: Returning to his rural hometown after his father’s death, a fiery student activist finds himself forced to sort out his family’s very tangled affairs, in Uruguayan writer-director Manolo Nieto’s sensitive and poetic coming-of-age story. Ramblings:

Monday, September 9, 2013

MARY Queen of Scots

In brief: The brilliant young French actress Camille Rutherford (Low Life) stars as the doomed monarch in this sumptuous historical drama by Swiss director Thomas Imbach. Ramblings:

Finding Vivian Maier

In brief: This intriguing documentary shuttles from New York to France to Chicago as it traces the life story of the late Vivian Maier, a career nanny whose previously unknown cache of 100,000 photographs has earned her a posthumous reputation as one of America’s most accomplished and insightful street photographers. Ramblings:

The Double

In brief: Jesse Eisenberg and Mia Wasikowska star in writer-director Richard Ayoade’s updating of the famous Dostoevsky novella about a man who finds his life being usurped by his doppelganger. Ramblings:

Night Moves

In brief: Jesse Eisenberg, Dakota Fanning and Peter Saarsgard star as radical environmental activists whose act of eco-terror plunges them into a moral maelstrom, in the highly anticipated new film from acclaimed American auteur Kelly Reichardt (Wendy and Lucy, Meek’s Cutoff). Ramblings:

Devil's Knot

In brief: Atom Egoyan dramatizes the fallout from the notorious 1993 West Memphis murders, focusing on the grieving mother (Reese Witherspoon) of one of the murdered boys as she grows increasingly troubled by the lynch-mob fever that grips the town. Ramblings:

Saturday, September 7, 2013

Mystery Road

In brief: Returning to his small outback hometown, an Aboriginal police detective undertakes an investigation into the brutal murder of a teenage Aboriginal girl that brings the town’s long-simmering tensions to the surface. Aaron Pedersen, Jack Thompson and Hugo Weaving star in this new film from internationally lauded Australian director Ivan Sen (Beneath Clouds, Toomelah). Ramblings:

The Sea

In brief: Mourning the recent death of his wife and wrestling with the demons of his past, a retired art historian (Ciaran Hinds; Munich) takes lodging at a seaside cottage under the eye of a watchful housekeeper (Charlotte Rampling), in this adaptation of revered Irish author John Banville’s Man Booker Prize-winning novel. Ramblings:

Friday, September 6, 2013

Palo Alto

In brief: Based on James Franco’s first book of short stories, Gia Coppola’s auspicious directorial debut features a knock-out cast (including Franco, Emma Roberts, and Zoe Levin) and immerses us in the tangled lives of teenagers living in the eponymous Californian city. Ramblings:

Heart of a Lion

In brief: The leader of a gang of racist skinheads finds his prejudices and misplaced loyalties pitted against his desire for love and family when he falls for a waitress whose son is of African descent. Ramblings: