Author Christopher Misch

I've always loved movies, but it wasn't until under the tutelage of Professor Garry Leonard at the University of Toronto that my passion for the industry became an understanding of an art form. With a specific fascination in both the western genre and Asian cinema in general, I am of the view that good movies are either enlightening or entertaining, and if you are truly lucky they are both.


5. I Am Number Four

While the original score composed for the film leaves much to be desired, the film’s music selection of popular tracks from The Kings of Leon, XX, and Adele were an effective touch and probably the strongest aspect of the film. But, when a film’s choice of music is its strong suit, there’s a problem and I Am Number Four is most definitely evidence of this. The film begins with a bang and its open-end conclusion, which reeks of impending sequels leaves us strangely wanting more; but both are surely not enough to make us forget about the lousy moments that came in between.


4. The Good The Bad The Weird

Dubbed a Kimchi Western, the first of its kind, based on the famous Korean dish whereby associating itself with the Spaghetti Westerns of old, The Good The Bad The Weird takes several of its components from past examples of the genre and the result is something entirely fresh and invigorating.


On one side of the cinematic spectrum lies Terrence Malick’s The Tree of Life; a film of so much beauty and grace. At the opposite end of this spectrum, buried under fifty feet of crap is Martin Campbell’s Green Lantern; a film so caught up in its dazzling 3D special effects (and they are impressive) that it is completely and utterly devoid of the real reasons why we go to the cinemas.

NP Approved

For Malick, The Tree of Life is a culmination of a life’s work that while only five films in total is more rich and full than most who have stepped behind the lens of camera. Throughout its duration we feel we are in the company of greatness; in the hands of a man who has a better grasp on life and more to say about it than we ever will.


Embedded within the strenuous climate of the Cuban Missile Crisis, Matthew Vaughn’s X-Men: First Class finds itself entrenched with the United States and Russia on the brink of war. Kevin Bacon’s Sebastian Shaw, a mutant who possesses the remarkable ability to harness kinetic energy and transform that power into brute strength, intends to use this impending American/Russian conflict to create a nuclear holocaust; an environment which he believes would favour mutant domination over the powerless humans.


The 2011 TIFF Student Film Showcase took place this past week at the TIFF Bell Lightbox. From 2D animation, stop-motion, and live action, a wide variety of short features were exhibited representing the finest student films made in Canada this past year. A particular highlight was Miles Jay’s Blink; a cautionary dystopian tale exploring the potential dangers of social media.


Johnny Depp sails the seas once again as Captain Jack Sparrow in this the fourth installment of the Pirates of the Caribbean franchise, entitled On Stranger Tides. In his latest adventure, Sparrow finds himself on a perilous quest to locate the elusive fountain of youth. With Gore Verbinski‘s departure from the Pirates‘ franchise, producer Jerry Bruckheimer has turned to the talents of director Rob Marshall (Chicago, Memoirs of a Geisha) to carry this blockbuster franchise forward.


In Scott Stewart’s futuristic western horror, Priest, humans and vampires have been at war with each other for ages. This sustained combat had consumed the Earth; leaving regions uninhabitable. In response to the growing vampire threat, the Church had established a secret society of ‘Priests’ to fend off the vampires and end the bloodshed. Touched by God, these ‘Priests’ were an outfit of elite warriors who used their superior skills and weapons to defeat the vampires, bringing an end to the brutal conflict.

NP Approved

Long has the western genre been plagued by the Hollywood romanticized interpretations of the old west derived from popular Western fiction, including the writings of Zane Grey and Louis L’Amour. This traditional view of western cinema is largely composed of the iconic cowboy figure, climatic showdowns at dawn, and beautiful desert landscapes.


With all the comic book film adaptions, including sequels, prequels, and franchise reboots, that have…