Category Archives: Culture Shock

Expert Witness

As part of the Canada 150 cultural thing, CBC has a summer series, The Filmmakers, in which Johanna Schneller celebrates Canadian cinema by picking a film from the canon every Saturday night and screening it along with an interview with the director and a panel discussion.

It’s been pretty good so far, and tonight’s episode is especially great, if I do say so myself, spotlighting Don McKellar’s Last Night — a film too often overlooked in conversations about our national cinema, but one which says more about our country’s identity and attitude than anyone initially realized.

It’s the quintessential Toronto movie — we proved that at NOW with science! — and I was delighted to be invited onto tonight’s panel along with Sook-Yin Lee and Bob Martin to discuss it.

The producers also asked me to write this week’s essay, which you can read right here — I’m really happy with the way it turned out, too. You’ll also find my panel there, should you want to watch it in advance of the movie. But really, watch it in HD tonight so you can see precisely how bald I am. The photo doesn’t do it justice.

Reality Comes Crashing In

So, a couple of things happened yesterday.

First, Hot Docs held its launch conference and rolled out this year’s program, which looks to be a good one; I wrote about it for the NOW website.

And while we were all sitting comfortably in the Bloor, the news broke that Rob Ford had died — surprising no one, but opening the floodgates for polished memorials and some blatant rewriting of history. I wrote something about his real legacy for NOW, which you might want to read if you’re not already topped up on this stuff.


Hey, look! A rare Wednesday post! Just offering links to a couple of things that went by pretty quickly on my Twitter feed.

First of all, an old friend of mine asked me to discuss celebrity culture and the Oscars over at her website — which also sets up my own piece on the pointlessness of the Academy Awards in tomorrow’s paper.

And over at said paper’s website, I wrote a consideration of Paul Rust and Gillian Jacobs’ new Netflix series Love — a strange hybrid beast that is filled with comedic talent but not exactly a comedy, and all the better for it.

Check ’em out. Food for thought, and all that.