The Adjustment Bureau – What if your destiny was determined by a secret committee that followed you around making sure you stayed on track? That’s the premise of The Adjustment Bureau, a sci-fi-romance-comedy-thriller that comes across as Inception meets When Harry Met Sally meets Mad Men. Based on Philip K. Dick’s story, the film stars Matt Damon as a young politician who meets the girl of his dreams (played by Emily Blunt) only to find out he’s not meant to be with her, and that there is an “adjustment team” dictating this decision making it impossible for him to get close to her. Directed by George Nolfi (The Bourne Ultimatum, Ocean’s Twelve), the film has a very stylish and cool vibe to it, and along with Damon’s performance, the movie works very well on all levels. **** out of 5 stars.
Curling – Denis Côté’s Curling is a solemn look at a broken man (played by Emmanuel Bilodeau) as he tries to raise his young daughter (played by Philomène Bilodeau) in a small Quebec town. While the performances are excellent, the story will leave you with more questions than answers when it’s over, and will have you wondering what it was really about. I’m still undecided as to whether I truly enjoyed it or not. One thing for certain is that I’ve been debating and pondering it ever since screening it and will give it another chance when it comes out on DVD. *** out of 5 stars. Opening in Toronto at the TIFF Bell Lightbox.
Machete Maidens Unleashed! – Directed by Mark Hartley (Not Quite Hollywood) and featuring interviews with filmmakers and actors like Roger Corman, Joe Dante, John Landis, Sig Haig, and Pam Grier, Machete Maidens Unleashed! is an exciting expose of the Filipino-produced exploitation films and B-movies from the ’70s and ’80s. This is a must-see doc if you’re a fan of these types of films, and will not only make you want to run out and watch titles like The Big Doll House (1971) and Black Mamba (1974), but will open your eyes as to how these movies came to be made for so cheap in the Philippines and the political agenda the films and filmmakers were trying to portray. **** out of 5 stars. Opening in Toronto at the Bloor Cinema.
Also opening this week is Funkytown, about the ’70s disco scene in Montreal, the animated Johnny Depp feature Rango, and Beastly, an updated version of Beauty and the Beast starring I Am Number Four‘s Alex Pettyfer.