Body Horror and the Jackass Films

Early on in Jackass: The Movie, cast members Johnny Knoxville, Chris Pontius, Dave England, and Ehren McGhehey sit around a table with a muscle stimulator (a device that sends an electric current through the muscles of whatever part of the body it is hooked up to). Knoxville starts with the stimulator pads on his cheeks. The switch is thrown and he screams in pain before … Continue reading Body Horror and the Jackass Films

TIFF 2020 – ‘David Byrne’s American Utopia’

David Byrne has always been an idiosyncratic figure. A musician, filmmaker, artist, author, and label executive, Byrne has always brought his unique viewpoint and catalogue of references to everything that he is a part of. His Broadway production American Utopia is no exception, drawing on Dadaism, James Baldwin, Janelle Monáe, and many of his main thematic obsessions like capitalism, conformity, and the joy of the … Continue reading TIFF 2020 – ‘David Byrne’s American Utopia’

TIFF 2020 – ‘City Hall’

The American political system is crumbling. Trump and the Republican Party have destroyed many policies and social safety nets meant to help the most at-risk portion of the population, while parroting far-right and fascist talking points to a voting base looking for someone to blame their problems on. On the other side of the aisle, Joe Biden and the Democratic Party have done next to … Continue reading TIFF 2020 – ‘City Hall’

How Critics Failed ‘Jupiter Ascending’

It’s no secret that when the Wachowskis’ operatic space epic Jupiter Ascending was released to theatres in the summer of 2015 it was lambasted by critics for it’s bloated plot, clunky dialogue, and questionable performances. In his review for NPR, critic Andrew Lapin writes that the film “is a universe away from The Matrix, still the last time a Wachowski effort fired on all cylinders. … Continue reading How Critics Failed ‘Jupiter Ascending’