Posts Tagged ‘Heather Graham’


Richard speaks to “CTV News at 11:30” anchor Andria Case about television and movies to watch during the pandemic including the reality show “World of Dance,” the family drama “The Rest of Us” with Heather Graham and “Mr. Jones,” a story of journalism in a fraught time.

Watch the whole thing HERE! (Starts at 23:54)


Richard sits in on the CFRA Ottawa morning show with host Bill Carroll to talk the new movies coming to VOD and streaming services including the new Kevin Bacon psychological thriller “You Should Have Left,” the Heather Graham family drama “The Rest of Us,” the “Showgirls” rethink “You Don’t Nomi” and “Mr. Jones,” the true-life story of one journalist’s journey to tell the truth.

Listen to the whole thing HERE!

THE REST OF US: 3 ½ STARS. “lovely testament of power of empathy & forgiveness.”    

Blended families can be complicated, messy ecosystems particularly when tragedy is involved. There are a ton of movies about divided loyalties in the face of divorce or death but “The Rest of Us,” the new Heather Graham film, now on VOD, is different. Rather than milking the relationship between first and second wives for heightened drama, it focusses on empathy and compassion.

Graham plays illustrator and author Cami, mother to Aster (Sophie Nélisse) and ex-spouse to Craig. Ten years previously he cheated on her with Rachel (Jodi Balfour), leaving his first family behind to start again with the younger woman. “She’s almost young enough to be your daughter,” says Aster. When he dies in the tub the two women have a chilly reunion at the funeral reception, which happens to be in the house Cami shared with Craig.

Days later the two women meet again and some shocking truths about Craig’s financial state arise. “He hasn’t paid the mortgage for six months,” Rachel tells Cami. “It’ll all go up for auction. The furniture, the house, everything. We can keep a few clothes and things.” Moved, Cami offers Rachel and daughter Talulah (Abigail Pniowsky) a temporary place to stay while she waits for the insurance money to come in. Rachel declines but when the house is foreclosed on, her hand is forced.

With the four living on Cami’s property secrets are revealed, tensions vented and grief and anger over the passing of the man who connects them is shared.

“The Rest of Us” has plenty of reveals. Truths are uncovered at an astounding rate but there are never fireworks, just well calibrated moments that expose the complicated dynamics of interpersonal relationships. Director Aisling Chin-Lee never overplays or rushes those moments even though the film has a scant eighty-minute running time. Instead she allows the strong performances from each of the players—particularly from Nélisse—to do the heavy emotional lifting.

Sharp writing keeps “The Rest of Us’” unusual premise from becoming too pat, even if one of the big reveals is telegraphed early on. Still, it’s a lovely testament to the power of empathy and forgiveness.


Screen Shot 2016-01-15 at 3.44.59 PMRichard and CP24 anchor Nneka Elliott talk about Michael Bay’s latest, the action film “13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi,” a buddy cop flick called “Ride Along 2” starring Ice Cube and Kevin Hart and the Edsel of the animation world, “Norm of the North.”

Watch the whole thing HERE!


Screen Shot 2016-01-15 at 10.41.05 AMRichard and “Canada AM” host Marci Ien talk about the Michael Bay action film “13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi,” the buddy cop flick “Ride Along 2” with Ice Cube and Kevin Hart and a contender for worst film of the year, “Norm of the North.”

Watch the whole thing HERE!

NORM OF THE NORTH: 0 STARS. “feel-good story that left me feeling bad.”

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There will be a time in the near future when “Inside Out” and “Norm of the North” will be listed on your Netflix queue as animated films, but make no mistake they don’t belong in the same category. Where “Inside Out” is a happy serving of eye candy topped with a transcendent story, “Norm” seems to exist not as a story but simply as a vessel for cute characters.

Set in the Arctic, where Ivory Gulls speak with English accents, lemmings are indestructible and polar bears twerk (and speak English) for the amusement of tourists, the movie wraps an environmental message for kids human encroachment in the Arctic around a feel-good story that left me feeling bad.

Norm (voice of Rob Schneider) is an insecure polar bear who must remind himself that he has top of the Arctic food chain. “You’re an animal, “he says, “literally.” He’s timid polar—he’s a “a bear with too much care and not enough scare”—but when an evil New York developer named Mr. Greene (Ken Jeong) plans to build condos in his corner of the arctic he springs into action. Overhearing the builder’s associate Vera (Heather Graham) say she’s looking for a symbol of the arctic who can talk to potential customers, Norm hatches a plan. He stows away to New York City (with three lemming henchmen in tow) to become the Greene’s spokesbear. His idea is to “use the Arctic to save the Arctic.”

“Norm of the North” is as entertaining as you’d think a children’s cartoon starring Deuce Bigalow: Male Gigolo will be. It’s cut rate Saturday morning cartoon level animation—some scenes don’t even look fully rendered—that relies on kid-friendly characters rather than story or jokes. In other words, if “Inside Out” is the Ferrari of kids animation, sleek and well-made, “Norm of the North” is the Edsel.

It assumes children don’t need entertainment that works on any other level than, ”Where can I buy a cute stuffed Norm doll?” Despite its family friendly messages about friends, family and loyalty, the movie doesn’t try and disguise its cynical heart. At the spokesbear audition Vera gushes over Norm, “He’s cute and marketable, it’s perfect.” You can only imagine a similar conversation in the design phase for this movie. Also, is Norm’s description of Mr. Greene as “a creepy one note villain” dialogue from the script or a passage from the stage directions that accidentally made it into the film? It’s hard to know.

“Norm of the North” has little to recommend it. Padded with dance numbers—two in the first fifteen minutes alone—and montages, the best that can be said is that bad movies like this are important to remind us that the Pixar movies aren’t flukes.


judy-moody-and-the-not-bummer-summer-movie-photo-01-550x365By the end of “Judy Moody and the Not Bummer Summer” Judy won’t be the only moody one. Parents unlucky enough to have to attend this manic adaptation of the popular Megan McDonald book series will likely go through a gamut of moods including irritation and vexation.

The story is simple enough. Judy (Jordana Beatty) a precocious third grader on summer break, planned to have the greatest school holiday of her life, but when her best friends leave for circus camp and an extended trip to Borneo she is left to her own devices. As the movie’s title implies, things look up when her parents get called away to California and bring in free spirited Aunt Opal (Heather Graham) to babysit. Suddenly the summer’s not such a bummer after all.

This is a movie for the eight-and-under crowd, a loud, hyper slice of shenanigans that doesn’t aim to entertain anyone over a grade three reading level. What it lacks in story it makes up for in slapstick which is probably fine for the pre-tweens but will test the will of their guardians to stay in their seats for the whole ninety minute running time.

Mixed in with plucky Judy’s tomfoolery are some messages about friendship and imagination but they are overwhelmed by the movie’s chaotic middle hour wall of noise.

Despite the presence of the fetching “Boogie Nights” star Heather Graham there’s nothing particularly cinematic about “Judy Moody and the Not Bummer Summer,” which suggests that a viewing could wait until it comes out on DVD… and parents can safely sit in the next room while the kids watch this on TV.