Ben’s at Home

Spotlight on Canadian Films - OCanFilmFest

Ben’s at Home is  a quirky comedy about a 30-year-old guy who has made the unusual decision never to leave the house after a bad break-up.  Thanks to the power of the internet, has finds that abiding by this decision is easier than he thought.

The film is the first feature of award award-winning Canadian director Mars Horodyski.  An alumna of the Canadian Film Centre’s Director’s Lab, she also co-wrote and produced the film.  Lead actor, Producer and co-writer Dan Abramovici is a founding member of Awkward Silence sketch comedy troupe.  The film has screened and won awards in several festivals around the world and is now streaming on Netflix Canada.

Ben’s character reminds me of “Physical Phil” from October Road (2007-2008), one of my favourite TV series of all time.  Mars’ debut feature film is one I really enjoyed and is just the kind of film I would like to make in the future.  Check it out.

Jean of the Joneses

Spotlight on Canadian Films - OCanFilmFest

“It’s just like a Woody Allen movie.  Except in this case, he’s a Jamaican woman.”  That’s how someone described Canadian writer-director Stella Meghie’s debut feature comedy Jeans of the Joneses at a recent screening I attended.  It’s an accurate description of what I have to say was one of the most entertaining and satisfying movie experiences I have enjoyed in some time.

Meghie’s quick-witted dialogue and directorial style really add to the quirkiness of the comedy which focuses on a young writer and her interactions with her dysfunctional family in the aftermath of a death in the family and a failed relationship.  The film was a hit at TIFF 2016 and I recommend you check it out if you have a chance.  Here’s the trailer.

 

The Stairs

Spotlight on Canadian Films - OCanFilmFest

Winner of the Toronto Film Critics Association prize for Best Canadian Feature of 2016, Hugh Gibson’s documentary The Stairs is a challenging look at the lives of those who live on the margins.

I saw this film at the Kingston Canadian Film Festival earlier this year and was blown away by the sensitivity of the filmmaker and the amazing access to the subjects in Toronto’s Regent Park.

The film is now streaming on-demand at tvo.org.  Here’s the trailer.

You can access the film directly at the tvo.org site by clicking  this link.