Film remembers beloved son, soldier Marc Diab

Trooper Marc DiabTORONTO - He was a beloved son, youth leader and Canadian soldier who wore his faith and patriotism proudly as he served in Afghanistan.

So much so that a rosary was found inside the helmet he wore that was recovered after the roadside blast that took his life last year.

On Remembrance Day, the story of Trooper Marc Diab will serve as an “active remembrance” of the sacrifice of all Canadian soldiers, says the director of a new documentary about Diab and the impact of his death upon his family.

The American should be better, but leaves audience disappointed

The AmericanGeorge Clooney is in a very bad mood in The American (Focus), playing a hired assassin who has soured on his profession and contemplates a better life. While this should be a gripping, fast-paced thriller worthy of the Jason Bourne franchise, the title character's depression and sheer lethargy keep the film's gears firmly in park, leaving the audience bewildered and disappointed.

Additionally, although the serious intent of the filmmakers is clear, scenes of graphic sexuality suggest a very restricted audience, while the treatment of Christian morality — via the presence of a far from exemplary, but nonetheless sympathetic Catholic priest — is unsatisfying and insubstantial.

Woody Allen's collateral damage

{mosimage}The opening voiceover of Match Point, with its image of a tennis ball tipped at the net and hovering, about to fall on one side or the other, might lead some to quickly pigeonhole Woody Allen’s forthright blunder back into film making respectability. This movie is a story about luck, the role chance plays in determining our lives, it says.

Hope in a child's birth

Children of MenWriter-director Alfonso Cuaron uses P.D. James's novel The Children of Men to show us a world worn out, spinning on the empty energy of caffeine, terrorism, anger, paranoia, suicide and the media's technology of mental chaos. He shows us the real culture of death. But then he shows us something more.

Retelling of nativity lags behind Gibson's blockbuster

 Hollywood movies often generate all sorts of movie paraphernalia, from McDonald's action figure trinkets to coffee mugs and posters, but knock off items for this year's Christmas release The Nativity Story are sparse.

Nativity gets Hollywood treatment

nativityTORONTO - The latest film in Hollywood's fascination with Christ is about to hit the theatres. The Nativity Story will be released in early December just in time for the Christmas season.

Terror on terror

{mosimage}It is as unlikely that anyone will be able to parse the meaning of V for Vendetta by reviewing the political history of Guy Fawkes and the gunpowder conspiracy as it is that history will remember all those tortured, turgid, adolescent essays about the philosophy behind The Matrix trilogy. If the Wachowski brothers — the verbose screensmiths behind this movie and that previous black leather opus — have a political philosophy it is well hidden.

DVD seeks answers from the cast of The Passion of the Christ

{mosimage}It's not going to be the blockbuster that Mel Gibson's The Passion of the Christ became, but a spin-off documentary DVD is in a quiet way more interesting. The Big Question, released this month in Canada by independent Toronto filmmaker TH!NKFilm, is a gentle movie that asks very important questions.

Some lessons in spiritual life

At the beginning of March, Philip Groning’s film Into Great Silence came into a theatre in New York that specializes in foreign films. It was advertised as having a two-week run. But when each of the three daily showings continued to sell out, the theatre owners put “Held Over” up on the marquis. Now, at month’s end, it’s still playing to full houses. The DVD went on sale in Canada April 3.

Pope remembered on film

TORONTO - The first Canadian theater screening of the film “Karol: The Pope, The Man” will be shown at the Ontario Place IMAX Cinesphere in English and Polish on Mar . 31 and in Italian Apr. 1. It is being sponsored by Catholic Youth Studio-KSM Inc.

Jesus tomb discovery ‘nonsense’

last-tomb-of-jesusTORONTO - The claim by a Toronto filmmaker that he had found the true burial site of Jesus of Nazareth — along with Jesus’ wife and child — began to sink under withering criticism almost as soon as he revealed his new film Feb. 26.