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Parasite

Courtesy of MK2 Mile End

  • Written and directed by Bong Joon-ho
  • Starring Song Kang-ho, Lee Sun-kyun and Choi Woo-sik
  • Classification R; 132 minutes

rating

An exhilarating and furious indictment of class struggle, Parasite might be the masterpiece South Korea’s Bong Joon-ho has been working toward his entire career. Focusing on two families – one a clan of con artists living in a cramped basement apartment, the other led by a tech mogul who keeps his wife and two children safely ensconced in a star architect’s modern-luxe mansion – Parasite expertly plays with tension and expectations. (Opens Oct. 18 in Toronto)

Greener Grass

COURTESY OF GULP SPLASH

  • Written and directed by Jocelyn DeBoer and Dawn Luebbe
  • Starring D’Arcy Carden, Dot-Marie Jones and Neil Casey
  • Classification N/A; 95 minutes

rating

Do we really need another tale in which the myth of suburban perfection is unveiled as life-destroying and bad? Thankfully, yes. With its dark humour, tight performances and unparalleled weirdness, Greener Grass is a comedy destined to achieve cult status for anyone lucky enough to see it. (Opens Oct. 18 at the TIFF Lightbox in Toronto)

David Foster: Off the Record

Melbar Entertainment

  • David Foster: Off the Record
  • Directed by Barry Avrich
  • Classification PG; 98 minutes

rating

In Barry Avrich’s straightforward documentary David Foster: Off the Record, the usual complaint about the famed Canadian record producer’s slick, flawless sound is brought up. “Not enough grit,” says one of the parade of interviewees. One might say the same about an informative character study that offers little music-biz dirt or raw candidness for a film with “Off the Record” in its title. (Now playing in select Cineplex theatres)

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April In Autumn

Courtesy of GAT

  • Directed by Warren Sulatycky
  • Written by Caitlyn Sponheimer and Warren Sulatycky
  • Starring Caitlyn Sponheimer and Sandra Pascuzzi
  • Classification N/A; 90 minutes

rating

The entirety of April In Autumn is defined by two questions: How well do we know the people we love, and do we have any right to expose their secrets once we learn them? This would have been more than enticing had writer, director and producer Warren Sulatycky focused more on April and less on the characters who orbit her. (Opens Oct. 18 in Toronto)

Zombieland: Double Tap

Jessica Miglio/Sony Pictures

  • Directed by Ruben Fleischer
  • Written by Dave Callaham, Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick
  • Starring Zoey Deutch, Abigail Breslin, Emma Stone, Woody Harrelson and Jesse Eisenberg
  • Classification R; 99 minutes

rating

As Zombieland: Double Tap progresses, it becomes increasingly predictable. Still, thanks to stellar performances all around, it proves to be a perfectly acceptable sequel and laugh-out-loud funny, though the stakes aren’t anywhere close to high enough to warrant any real touching moments. (Opens Oct. 18)

Maleficent: Mistress of Evil

Walt Disney Pictures

  • Directed by Joachim Ronning
  • Written by Micah Fitzerman-Blue, Noah Harpster and Linda Woolverton
  • Starring Angelina Jolie, Elle Fanning and Michelle Pfeiffer
  • Classification PG; 118 minutes

rating

Maleficent: Mistress of Evil is a misfire and waste of so many resources and people’s talents, with a CGI budget that surely trumps Game of Thrones, and an ensemble of interesting actors (including Angelina Jolie, Elle Fanning, Sam Riley and Michelle Pfeiffer) trying their hardest to fill out dialogue and direction that does them no favours. (Opens Oct. 18)

The King

Netflix

  • Directed by David Michod
  • Written by David Michod and Joel Edgerton
  • Starring Timothée Chalamet, Joel Edgerton and Robert Pattinson
  • Classification R; 133 minutes

rating

Don’t expect David Michod’s new film The King to dominate your Netflix queue for very long, given that the movie – a messy and frequently bloody blend of Shakespeare’s Henriad plays, but devoid of their language, scope and, well, drama – is forgettable. (Opens Oct. 16 at the TIFF Lightbox in Toronto, Oct. 25 in Montreal, Nov. 1 in Vancouver and Nov. 1 on Netflix)


This weekly guide was compiled by Lori Fazari, with reviews from Anne T. Donahue, Sarah Hagi, Barry Hertz, Chandler Levack and Brad Wheeler.

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