Tag Archives: Nova Scotia

Wild about WEIRDOS

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Bruce McDonald’s 2016 TIFF offering, Weirdos, is the kind of film that makes you glad you went to the movies.

The title is a flashback to ‘70s jargon, where ‘weirdo’ was a common expression used to describe anyone who wasn’t like everyone else.

Set in 1976 Cape Breton, the principle weirdos in this magical collaboration by McDonald and playwright Daniel MacIvor are two teenage misfits, Kit (Dylan Authors) and his girlfriend Alice (Julia Sarah Stone,) who are desperately seeking to bring some colour into their black-and-white lives. Together they hitchhike their way to the big city – in this case, Sidney, Nova Scotia – where Kit plans to live with his glamorous mother (Molly Parker.) And although at first glance Weirdos resembles a teenage road movie, Kit and Julia soon learn that sometimes the destination is the journey.

Regardless of the size of their roles, McDonald has a wonderful way of giving his actors their moments to shine. Molly Parker should be a shoo-in for a Best Supporting Actress nomination for her tempestuous portrayal of Kit’s unstable mother. Allan Hawco offers a stellar, close-to-the-bone performance as Kit’s struggling father. Cathy Jones is heartwarming as Kit’s stiff-upper-lip grandmother. Rhys Bevan-John intrigues and entices in a high-risk cameo role that happily pays off. And thanks to McDonald’s light touch and MacIvor’s justifiably celebrated way with words, young scene-stealers Dylan Authors and Julia Sarah Stone win and keep us rooting for them from start to finish.

Given the lavish natural beauty of Cape Breton, Becky Parson’s soft black-and-white cinematography keeps us focused on story, not scenery, McDonald’s ‘70s soundtrack is a lyrical blend of rhythm and nostalgia, and all of it makes for  outstanding viewing. Weirdos is anything but weird, but it sure is fun to watch.

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Lenore hosts a Social in Truro, Betty hosts SNL for Mother’s Day & Krystin waits on stage for the Parade

NO PEOPLE LIKE SHOW PEOPLE: New headline-making Nova Scotia MLA Lenore Zann is hosting a Spring-Is-In-The-Air Social & Dance this weekend in Truro, NS to raise

WHITE: she's Hot

money for an upcoming community production of Thornton Wilder’s Our Town. It’s all happening Saturday night at The Pond (that’s the Ponderosa Tavern to me and you) on Main Street in Bible Hill … Chi Cao, the Principal Dancer with the Birmingham Royal Ballet who stars in Bruce Beresford’s hypnotic drama Mao’s Last Dancer, will jet to T.O. to attend the special National Ballet’s SRO preview screening next Monday at the Isabel Bader Theatre … SNL alumnus Jimmy Fallon has come a long way from co-hosting Weekend Update. This summer he’ll host the Emmy Awards on Aug. 29 … and Betty White, still set to host this weekend’s Mother’s Day edition of Saturday Night Live in New York, has joined the cast of a new TV Land original series Hot in Cleveland.

FOOTLIGHTS: Once more intent on battling “Canada’s most dangerous enemy, cultural amnesia,” VideoCabaret presents Michael Hollingsworth’s The Great War, opens

PELLERIN: on stage

tomorrow night at The Cameron House … also opening Thursday: Bobby Del Rio’s new play The Market, not on a stage but in a corporate office space at Adelaide & Jarvis. The play, which features Kyle McDonald, Julian DeZotti, Aaron Forward and Ryan Moleiro as 20-something traders, runs through May 23 and Del Rio warns audiences that his new show contains violence, “excessive” language, “and guys acting like dicks!” … and Republic Of Doyle scene-stealer Krystin Pellerin, so good as the pistol-packing detective hopelessly smitten with Allan Hawco’s Jake, is currently on stage starring in the Soulpepper revival of John Murrell’s Waiting for the Parade, now thru May 29 at the Young Centre in the Distillery District.

CAO: Toronto-bound

OUR TOWN: Three up-and-coming bands – Canteen Knockout, Bronx Cheerleader and Proof Of Ghosts – headline this Sunday night’s concert at Sneaky Dee’s to save Reg Hartt’s time-honoured Cineforum. For more info, click here Scott Feschuk, Jacob Richler and executive chef Rob Gentile team up for the 2010 edition of Taste Of Maclean’s on May 17 at Buca …and Random House is set to launch Globe & Mail scribbler John Doyle’s new book, The World Is A Ball: The Joy, Madness And Meaning Of Soccer, on May 20 with a book-signing bash at, you guessed it, The Football Factory on Bathurst Street.

TOMORROW:

GLEE girl goes sci-fi,

and other earth-shattering scoops.

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Jim gets Jack, Tony gets Chris, Nova Scotia gets a Zannslide & Stratford gets Hockey Day In Canada

NO PEOPLE LIKE SHOW PEOPLE: Looks like Jack Nicholson has signed on to another James L. Brooks joint. Brooks, who directed Jack in Terms Of Endearment and As Good As It Gets, wants him for a new romantic comedy with

VANELLI: Dutch treat

VANELLI: Dutch treat

Reese Witherspoon and Paul Rudd …  Serena Ryder’s critically acclaimed CD is it O.K., already certified Gold here, will debut in the U.S. this September … Gino Vanelli is happily hunkering down in his country getaway in Holland, just 20 kilometers south of Amsterdam. “Why do logic and simplicity strike only later in life?” he ponders. “Having a home here allows me so much more latitude and access to Western and Eastern European concert halls. Even a gig in Moscow is only 3½ hours away.” Besides his current dates overseas he’s considering a Greatest Hits concert this coming September at the Hilton in Las Vegas. Stay tuned …  young filmmaker Jonathan Chiovitti premieres his new Batman fan film, Reign Of Fate, on Sunday at 5 pm at the Royal Theatre …   irreverent laugh-makers Gavin Crawford & Elvira Kurt are Together Again For The First Time tonight at Buddies In Bad Times … and director Tony Scott has signed new Star Trek captain Chris Pine to co-star with Denzel Washington in Unstoppable. Which sounds like it probably is.

THICKE: NHL fan

THICKE: NHL fan

REMEMBER WHEN IT WAS ‘THE CANADIAN GAME’?  My oh my, how times have changed. Armani and Gucci will replace shoulder pads and skates when the NHL’s brightest stars spruce up and head to Las Vegas for next week’s 2009 NHL Awards at the Palms Hotel. The 90-minute show will include performances by Grammy-winning singer-songwriter Chaka Khan and multi-platinum recording artist Robin Thicke, son of hockey fanatic Alan Thicke. (Look for another ice nut, crooner Michael Bublé, among the famous faces in the crowd. The NHL Awards house band will be led by Saturday Night Live band leader Katreese Barnes, and CBC Television will telecast the whole shebang in Hi-Def next Thursday  at 8:30 p.m.

OUT, OUT, DAMN PUCK:  It’s official – Coronation Street returns to its regular nightly 7 pm timeslot this coming Monday on CBC Television.

IN, IN, DAMN PUCK: Mr. Shakespeare’s second favourite town, Stratford Ontario, has been chosen to host the 10th annual Hockey Day In Canada celebrations January 30, 2010 on CBC Television, with Tim Horton’s picking up the tab for the ice time. Way to go, guys!

BERGEN: ex-fashionista

BERGEN: ex-fashionista

FASHION FILE: “Haute couture is over,” says wowOwow.com contributor Candice Bergen. “Toast. And whoever said that celebrities were the only ones left to wear these gowns failed to note that celebrities don’t pay a centime for them. Bupkus. Borrowed or given. So that leaves who … Russian girlfriends and Arab wives? Not to belittle or be dismissive but …

“I borrowed a Christian Lacroix once for a ball at a chateau outside Paris. I had a fitting. It was a spectacular dress and they had to let it out in the waist and take in the bust. My daughter was two or three at the time and she was playing underneath the gown, like in a teepee, and we had a small BMW and we had to bat the dress down so we could see out to drive!”

FAVOURITE HEADLINE OF THE WEEK: From the Halifax Chronicle-Herald: Actress wins her seat by a Zannslide. Which, in fact, she did. Brand-new NDP candidate Lenore Zann won more than 4,000 votes in her Nova Scotia riding of Truro-Bible Hill this week, twice as many as her closest Conservative competitor, and celebrated by hosting her victory party in a local watering hole, the Ponderosa Tap and Grill, affectionate dubbed The Pond by its regulars. And another Tory stronghold bites the dust. Said stage screen charmer (and new MLA) Zann: “This shows people in this province were really ready for a change.” Sounds like they’re about to get one.

VARDALOS: poster girl

VARDALOS: poster girl

NIA’S NEXT: Her life may be in Ruins at the moment, but Nia Vardalos has already completed her next film. It’s called I Hate Valentine’s Day, her costar is John Corbett (who was also her costar in My Big Fat Greek Wedding) and she wrote and directed it. “It’s my directorial debut, and we shot it in 18 days.” To pull off the low-budget comedy she cast mostly personal friends, like SNL alumnus Rachel Dretch, who also joined her in her current rom-com hit, My Life In Ruins. And forget about those movie star salaries. They’re so yesterday. “Everybody worked for scale,” Vardalos reports – “including John and me.”

 

Have a great SUNNY weekend. See you Monday.

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Ms Vardalos gets her Greek god, Ms Murray teaches us a lesson, and Ms Fonda twitters at the Tonys

MEET MR. GORGEOUS: We don’t know him over here, but Nia Vardalos’ leading man in My Life In Ruins, Alexis Georgoulis, is apparently the George Clooney of Greece. After audience reaction to him at the first sneak previews,

VARDALOS & GEORGOULIS: Mr. Gorgeous?

VARDALOS & GEORGOULIS: Mr. Gorgeous?

 the U.S. press has started calling him Alex Gorgeous. “Which I think is apropos,” Vardalos told wowOwow web writer Kristin Fritz. “One reviewer said, because apparently I have an every-woman look, and I have this gorgeous, Greek god as my male lead, the reviewer basically said, ‘Who do you think you are?’ And I’m like, umm, hi. No one. I’m just an every-woman. And in the same way that Seth Rogen gets Katherine Heigl in Knocked Up, and Paul Giamatti gets Virginia Madsen in Sideways, yes, my character gets the Greek god in this one.”

QUOTABLE QUOTES: “At a very young age I learned from my parents to have respect for all people no matter what race, religion or station in life. Respect takes on many forms. Respect is being on time: your time is no more important than others. Respect is being prepared: people are relying on you. Respect is treating everyone with dignity. The janitor, the gardener, the CEO should all be acknowledged and appreciated for the jobs they do. My father taught me to always stand up when being introduced to someone. When you shake his hand, look him in the eye. Take time; remember his name; make him feel special.”

MURRAY: wise wotds

MURRAY: wise words

The speaker? Supersongstress Anne Murray, to graduating students at the  University of Prince Edward Island. Murray, whose hit Music Of My Life special encored last weekend on CBC Television, is currently putting the final touches on her memoirs for October publication. But she’ll still be spending most of the summer in Nova Scotia and looks forward to greeting her legions of fans on July 25 for 20th anniversary celebrations of the Anne Murray Centre in Springhill.

EVERY LITTLE MOVEMENT:  New showbiz sport is trying to spot Twitterbugs at major theatrical openings. Did you notice that Jane Fonda was all a-Twitter at the Tony Awards two nights ago? Fonda has just returned from a trip

FONDA: Tony Twitterer

FONDA: Tony Twitterer

to the Galapagos with a group that included Angela Lansbury’s nephew David Lansbury. When David’s aunt won her fifth Tony, as Best Featured Actress for Blithe Spirit, Fonda noted, “as usual, she was graciousness incarnate.”  But she admitted she was as surprised as we were when Next To Normal “won best new score, beating Elton and Dolly. I haven’t seen it — yet.” Fonda and her fellow nominees were also enlisted as impromptu extras: “We’ve just all been handed throw-away lighters, I guess to light up during an upcoming Rock of Ages number,” she reported.  When the cast of Hair danced into the orchestra seats, she said, one of them landed in the lap of her pal and fellow nominee Janet McTeer. “This number from Hair really makes me wanna see it,” she added. After she lost the best actress prize to Marcia Gay Harden, Fonda was still sanguine. “For me it felt like a prize just getting to this. Janet McTeer and I will now go have some vodkas with impunity.” And after Hair won Best Musical Revival, Fonda footnoted, “I swear, half the audience is up there to accept the Tony!”

 

SPACEY: Tony talk

SPACEY: Tony talk

Yeah, there did seem to be a lot of that going on. Meanwhile, unless you were in a musical, you could hardly get arrested on this year’s unfortunate televised event. Mind you, Poison rocker Bret Michael came pretty close when he got bonked by the descending backdrop and ended up with a broken nose. Quipped Juno screenwriter Diablo Cody: “I’m concerned about Bret Michaels’ fractured nose. An acute sense of smell is essential to his dating process.” Meanwhile, stage & screen lion Kevin Spacey told New York Post scribe Michael Riedel he thinks the Tonys should be taken over by PBS, directed by Broadway veteran Mike Nichols and given the formality and inclusiveness that the theater deserves.

Dunno who would pick up the tab, but it sounds like a darn good idea to me.  

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Feist in the flicks! Zann on the hustings! David Sedaris at Carnegie Hall! (uhhhh, wait a minute …)

NO BIZ LIKE SHOW BIZ: What do Dark Knight scene-stealer Cillian Murphy, pop music queen Leslie Feist and Hollywood legend Lauren Bacall? They all appear on screen in the Canadian Film Centre’s upcoming

FEIST: on film

FEIST: on film

 Worldwide Short Film Festival, opening June 16 at special venues near you … Gallery 888’s 10th Anniversary Spring Fling & Ovarian Cancer Canada Fundraiser runs tomorrow, June 3, to  June 21, with works from over 40 artists … Ingrid Bergman’s pre-Rossellini daughter, New York broadcaster Pia Lindstrom, celebrated her new Sirius XM radio show with a dinner at Morton’s in Manhattan …  the buzz begins. YTV is all set to welcome a new comedy series this September, That’s So Weird. What’s really weird is that part of the team behind it cut their comedy teeth on This Hour Has 22 Minutes and Corner Gas. As street cred goes, not too shabby. Stay tuned … and speaking of comedy, Double Exposure’s weekly podcast sends up Susan Boyle (of course!), Stephen Harper’s discovery of some shocking Michael Ignatieff tapes, and a new epicurean delight from Canada’s Governor General. To hear it, just click here.

ZANN: NDP runner

ZANN: NDP runner

NO PEOPLE LIKE SHOW PEOPLE: Gossip Girl heartthrob Chace Crawford has taken over the Kevin Bacon role abandoned by Zac Efron in Paramount’s forthcoming remake of Footloose … Lyndsy Fonseca has been added to the upcoming Hot Tub Time Machine (and yes, it’s a comedy) …  Zach Braff will write, direct and co-star withCameron Diaz in Swingles (can you guess what it’s about?) … Rosario Dawson will be Kevin James’ love interest in The Zookeeper (ditto) … and when Nova Scotians go to the polls one week from today, don’t be surprised if they elect stage & screen charmer Lenore Zann to represent them.  A staple of Canadian and U.S. TV movies and mini-series, and justifiably celebrated for her tour-de-force portrayal of Marilyn Monroe, the gifted actress from the Maritimes is the NDP’s candidate in Truro-Bible Hill, and the opposition is clearly concerned.

 

ZANN: as Marilyn

ZANN: as Marilyn

On the same day NDP Leader Darrell Dexter announced Zann’s candidacy in Truro, Liberals circulated a bare-breasted photo of Zann as she appeared in an episode of the cable TV series The L Word. Zann says her nude scenes have never been a secret and they have no bearing on her abilities as a candidate. As for Nova Scotia Liberals, she added, “I think it shows their desperation.” Me too.

SEDARIS: at Carnegie Hall

SEDARIS: at Carnegie Hall

LITERATI:  Toronto Star laugh-maker Linwood Barclay reads clues from his new mystery Too Close To Home tonight at the Toronto Reference Library … Joy Fielding reads from her new novel, Still Life, tomorrow night at North York Central Library … Tash Aw’s Map Of The Invisible World goes Luminato at the Al Green Theatre on Thursday June 11 … and Camille Paglia explains her three new Commandments, Break, Blow, Burn, in a three-part lecture series on June 16 at the ROM … who knew? I bought Judy At Carnegie Hall and purchased Rufus At Carnegie Hall but apparently I missed out on the really big one: David Sedaris At Carnegie Hall. And no, I am not making this up. You can buy it online at Indigo/Chapters for only $17.80 plus shipping. Sedaris, the best-selling author of such quirky gems as Me Talk Pretty One Day and When You Are Engulfed In Flames, has become a raconteur to reckon with. And if his Carnegie Hall ‘concert’ is anything like his on-camera stint a while back with David Letterman, it should truly be a CD to remember.

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