Kate Corbett (Stacey in three episodes of LG Season 5) is Lady in the thriller ONCE THERE WAS A WINTER, a film about a young biology student (Corbett) who finds herself trapped in a double-wide trailer with a hunter, a welder, a plumber, and a cabinet full of guns, and learns the hard way about surviving in the Canadian north. Writer/director Ana Valine told Dana Gee of the Vancouver Sun that while writing the script, she drew on her own memories of landing in the midst of a very male world and needing to change the way she presented herself. “In my late 20s I worked up on the pipeline in northern Alberta,”, Valine said. “I had heard of a few situations and had some tense nights myself. It sat with me for years and years, and I basically let my imagination go with it and I wrote it in three weekends…I was the only female on the crew up there. You are in a very masculine world. It’s no place to sort of assert feminism and still be safe. So you have to kind of roll with a lot of it.” A trailer is available. Filmed fifteen miles outside of Dawson Creek, ONCE THERE WAS A WINTER will next screen at the Vancouver International Film Festival on 6 October at at 4:30pm. Continue reading →
LOOKING IS THE ORIGINAL SIN – Directed by Gail Harvey – SPOILERS
“Photography is about death, because what you’re doing really is you’re trying to capture a second that’s gone by and hang onto it, desperately clinging on to that moment that’s already happened.”
Linda Hamilton appears briefly as herself. Kris Holden-Ried is Helene’s ex-lover, and Dewshane Williams is Anna’s boyfriend Daniel in this story of a photographer’s daughter (Katie Boland) and her attempts to make sense of her mother’s detachment. It probably wasn’t a good idea for writer/director Harvey to say upfront that the film was inspired by the life of Diane Arbus. Quibbles about things un-Arbus-like would be easy to find, but the story is not about that, and it is a fascinating story.
We learn about Helene (Maria del Mar) through Anna’s investigation of her, and Anna takes her quest to understand her mother to extraordinary lengths. Helene explains to her that all she seeks is an ‘honest picture’, but Anna does not understand that, and needs more. Since Helene photographs everything, her daughter is able to track down friends, business associates, and even an ex-lover. Maria del Mar‘s intense portrayal makes one have a certain sympathy for the great artist attempting to flee the mundane, not wanting to spend time and mental energy being an emotional support for a daughter who has no apparent understanding of her creative process.
Helene’s exploratory activities, both artistic and sexual, are merely hinted at. The implication is that Helene is living on the edge, dangerously pushing the boundaries of sense and safety, but we see nothing of that beyond a couple of suggestive photos. The sins of this mother are very understated, and that gives Anna’s quest a kind of Dorothy in Oz feel, as she searches for the knowledge that will restore her home to what it was before her mother left.
Anna fears that since she does not know her mother, she does not know herself; that if she cannot trust her mother, she cannot trust herself.
Katie Boland is at her best in this film. In the beginning, her character is hard to watch. She is the sort of person one would like to get away from as soon as possible. Then there is a subtle change (the exact moment of which is unclear) and one feels protective toward her. Then she gets to know her mother’s friend Brent, and Anna becomes genuinely interesting. (Brent. a very tolerant man, is portrayed wonderfully by Kent Staines.)
When LOOKING was released in 2013, Harvey was interviewed by Andrew Parker for Dork Shelf, and he asked her what it was like making a film so personal to her with her daughter in the leading role. “Well, the Helene character isn’t me,” she responded. “It certainly isn’t autobiographical, but she does contain a lot of the ideas and things that I think about photography, and I guess she should since I wrote the darn thing. But I have known Maria for a long time now. She was actually only about three or four years older than Katie is now when I first cast her in a film. She’s fantastic, and she and Katie had actually played mother and daughter before. They were together on a fantastic show that was on HBO Canada called ‘Terminal City’ that was shooting out in Victoria, and they lived together in a house for that. Maria has known Katie since she was born, practically. So they already had a relationship.” (The 2005 miniseries TERMINAL CITY is available on DVD from Amazon.)
It is a visually quiet film, at least until the very end. There is a lot of watching the scenery go by as Anna walks or runs or rides the streetcar. If you are from Toronto and are living elsewhere, this is the film for you. Lots of landmarks and locations to identify and remember.
If the cast looks a bit familiar, here’s a possible explanation. Boland, Linda Hamilton, Kris Holden-Ried, Jayne Eastwood, and Maria del Mar have all appeared on LOST GIRL. Boland was Bianca the Seniatta. Hamilton was Acacia the Valkyrie. del Mar was Donna the mamma selkie in Fae Gone Wild. Eastwood was Velma the Mongolian Death Worm in Brotherfae of the Wolves. Gail Harvey directed five LOST GIRL episodes. Dewshane Williams, who plays Anna’s astonishingly supportive boyfriend Daniel, was Tommy LaSalle in 27 episodes of DEFIANCE.
The film had its initial release in Toronto in November 2013. A trailer is available on Vimeo.
Gail Harvey‘s latest film is a documentary called Rickie Lee Jones: The Other Side of Desire, in which Harvey follows singer-songwriter Jones as she makes her first studio album in ten years (titled The Other Side of Desire). Jones reflects on aging, being a woman in the music industry and the complex life she has lived. Both the documentary and the album are now available on iTunes.
Katie Boland has been cast in an as yet unspecified role in SOUTH OF HOPE STREET, a science fiction film written and directed by Jane Spencer, about a celestial event that only two people can (or will admit to being able to) see. Spencer says the film is set in a highly structured future country “kind of inspired by Switzerland”, and should be released sometime in 2017. Boland is also Sarah in BORN TO BE BLUE, a “re-imagining” of jazz great Chet Baker’s comeback in 1960’s, which can now be pre-ordered from iTunes (US). A trailer for BORN TO BE BLUE is available on YouTube.
Jayne Eastwood (Janet) will be The Butler in the Fox TV remake of THE ROCKY HORROR PICTURE SHOW, which will air as a 2-hour special sometime in October. She is also Vivian in the Hallmark movie ALL YOURS, which stars Nicollette Sheridan and will next air on 28 May at 5pm.
LOOKING IS THE ORIGINAL SIN can be purchased from iTunes (US and Canada). The film is not available on DVD. Amazon Canada has two versions of an 8×12 inch Wall Art Printing on Metal Tin Decoration Movie Poster Sign of Looking Is The Original Sin for $24.99 (Canadian).
LOST GIRL – Season 5 Episode 11 – SPOILERS
but that’s what I said about genital warts.”
Evony (Emmanuelle Vaugier) is back, and dangerous as ever, though still human and quite vulnerable. With the help of Stacey (Kate Corbett) and Acacia (Linda Hamilton), Tamsin becomes aware of her own power, puts Acacia in charge of Valhalla when she could have had the position for herself, and goads Hades into showing his hand a bit. Once again, nobody tells Bo anything. Lauren and Tamsin tell her only what they absolutely must.
Tamsin now has the Brísingamen, which Trick calls the “necklace of seduction”. She took it before she sent Freyja and Stacey to monitor Tartarus. (Well, she sent Frejya there. Stacey tagged along without being told.) In Norse myth, Freyja is the goddess of love and fertility (among other things) and the necklace, which she always wore, has power similar to that of Aphrodite’s girdle. In Greek mythology, Hephaestus made a girdle of finely wrought gold for his wife Aphrodite. The magic he wove into it’s filigree work made her irresistible, and caused the breakup of their marriage, just as the acquisition of the Brisingamen caused the split between Odin and Freyja (for slightly different reasons).
With Frejya and Stacey in Tartarus, and Acacia in Valhalla, no one on earth knows that Tamsin has the necklace. Hephaestus turns up in next week’s episode, Judgement Fae, so it is possible that the necklace somehow becomes a problem.
Still upset at losing Bo, Tamsin has devised a plan to send Hades (Eric Roberts) back where he came from. She locates Stacey, who is unhappily working at a fast food joint, and all too pleased to join the mission. Acacia (Linda Hamilton) initially wants no part of Tamsin and Stacey’s adventure, but when the two head to the abandoned high school where they had been classmates, Acacia shows up to offer assistance. It turns out she was hiding Freyja there and wanted to keep them from finding out about that.
Tamsin and Stacey find Freyja in a closet and force her to reveal her secrets. It seems that she was hiding because others wanted her to send Hades back to Hel, and she did not want it known that she didn’t have the power to do that. Her necklace had never worked on Hades. He went to Tartarus voluntarily so that he could build an army under cover of darkness.
Meanwhile, Evony’s test results are in, and she is very sick. So sick, in fact, that Lauren wonders aloud how she is still standing. Evony believes that her malady is the result of a curse that was placed on her while she was The Morrigan. The curse had no effect at the time, because she was so powerful, but once she became human, it took effect. Whether this is true or not (it seems like speculation on the part of Evony) it is bound to play on Lauren’s residual guilt about Nadia, her previous girlfriend who was cursed by The Ash into a five-year coma, and later killed by The Garuda.
In the best scene of the episode, Lauren and Bo are at the Dal discussing
Hades (Jack). Evony joins them at the bar.
LAUREN: [to Bo] “Speaking of Jack, how are you feeling?”
EVONY: “I love him. Finally someone was straight with me. I’m sick and I have to deal.”
BO: “Evony, I’m impressed.”
EVONY: “Well, luckily, I have the help of a very good doctor.”
LAUREN: (after long hesitation) “Oh, you mean me?”
EVONY: “God, I hate your false modesty. Yes, you, you moron.
Now buy me a drink. We got this, right?”
BO: “Yeah, I think we do.”
EVONY: (raises glass) “To Doctor Lewis. My friend. And the only hope I’ve got.”
LAUREN: “Evony, I swear to you, I will never give up on you.”
EVONY: “I know. I mean, you’re still chasing the succubus. Talk about futile.”
Kate Corbett (Stacey) is Tammy in THE STEPS, which had its premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival on 14 September. The film is about New York siblings who travel to Canada to visit their father and meet his new wife, only to hear their parents announce that they’re adopting a child. Directed by Andrew Currie, the film mocks peculiar obsessions and bad habits on both sides of the Canada/US border. Naomi Snieckus (the talent agent in LOST GIRL episode 1.9) also appears in the film as a social worker named Ellen.
The sci-fi thriller PRISONER X with Michelle Nolden as Carmen will be screened at the Calgary Film Festival 29 September at 9:30pm and 3 October at 11:15am. The film, about a prisoner the CIA believes to be a time-travelling terrorist, had its premiere at Cinefest Sudbury on 23 September.
The movie A SUNDAY HORSE, with Linda Hamilton as Mrs.Walden will be an Official Selection in the Equus Film Festival in New York City, 19-22 November. Inspired by a true story, the film focuses on a determined rider from the wrong side of the tracks recovering from a near fatal accident. She attempts a comeback at the National Jumping Championship, on a horse the experts thought was nothing special.
Hannah Anderson‘s short film COME BACK offers some interesting perks for donors. For $50 you get an “original and heartfelt love song dedicated to you” by Hannah Anderson. For $99, lead actor Brett Donahue will take you on a “fairy tale motorcycle ride into the sunset”. For $850, a screenshot of your choice from the completed film will be painted on a 24×30 canvas by artist Matthew Edison.
Emmanuelle Vaugier is Jill in the film MY STEPDAUGHTER. (Her stepdaughter is Casey, who seems determined to break up Jill’s new marriage, and might be willing to use drastic means to do so.) The film (originally titled simply STEPDAUGHTER) is now available on iTunes and on Amazon Video. The 2015 Fluffball, (run by the Fluffball Foundation which Vaugier founded in 2009) will happen in Los Angeles on 3 October. Tickets are now on sale. Proceeds will benefit The Animal Hope and Wellness Foundation.