Posts Tagged ‘icon’


A weekly feature from from! The Crouse Review is a quick, hot take on the weekend’s biggest movies! This week Richard looks at “Sicario: Day of the Soldado,” the inspirational comedy “Uncle Drew” and a glimpse at the life of Vivienne Westwood called “Westwood: Punk, Icon, Activist.”

Watch the whole thing HERE!


Richard sits in with CTV NewsChannel anchor Jennifer Burke  to have a look at the weekend’s big releases,“Sicario: Day of the Soldado,” the inspirational comedy “Uncle Drew,” the sci fi b-movie “Upgrade” and a glimpse at the life of Vivienne Westwood called “Westwood: Punk, Icon, Activist.”

Watch the whole thing HERE!

WESTWOOD: PUNK, ICON, ACTIVIST: 1½ STARS. “I can’t be bothered.”

Vivienne Westwood is one of the most provocative brand name fashion designers in the world. Her early work in the 1970s came to define the ripped-and-ready look of punk rock and now, decades later, her fashion forward design dot runways all over the world.

The title a new documentary from Lorna Tucker, “Westwood: Punk, Icon, Activist,” promises to showcase three aspects of Westwood’s life but instead mainly presents a portrait of an irascible person, dismissive of her legacy. It’s not exactly the stuff of great documentary.

Tucker presents a comprehensive biographical look at Westwood’s life, from humble beginnings and centre-of-the-punk-rock-storm—“We invented punk,” she says.”—to flat broke and back again to eco warrior. Supported by well chosen archival footage and featuring talking head interviews with Westwood and her inner circle, it’s good looking but never goes for the deep dive. People say things like, “She’s a punk rocker. She’s the only punk rocker,” without much substantiation.

Westwood is a legend, charismatic and an impish presence at age 77, but isn’t well served here.

“I can’t be bothered,” Westwood says in her sit-down interview. “Who wants to listen to all this stuff? If the film is only going to be a certain length I’m sure there is more interesting stuff to put in.” Unfortunately Tucker doesn’t find the really interesting stuff. “Westwood: Punk, Icon, Activist” is something Westwood has never been–dull.

Brown ‘changed me’: Caine RICHARD CROUSE FOR METRO CANADA September 15, 2009

harry-brown-michael-caine-EMFL-02In the TIFF film Harry Brown, Michael Caine plays a widowed man who strikes back at the hoodlums who have terrorizing his community. It’s close to a British take on Gran Torino, but don’t suggest to Sir Michael that it’s Death Wish U.K.

“It’s not like that at all,” he said. “It’s a complete work on its own. It was made by a young director named Daniel Barber. The first film of his I saw was The Tonto Woman, which got an Academy Award nomination for best short film. I liked it. It was a western and this is kind of like a western. It’s Gary Cooper in High Noon.”

So you could call it a Teabag Western if you like, but instead of being set on the wide open plain, the action in Harry Brown takes place in the decidedly more urban terrain of the Elephant and Castle section of London, an area Caine knows well.

“I always said I come from the slums,” he said of the E&C neighbourhood where he was born, “and I do, but when I went back I didn’t realize how lucky I was. Because when we were shooting late at night, I’d talk to the neighbourhood boys, … I realized was I was quite lucky because I had two thing they didn’t have: I had a happy family life and I got an education. So I had two valuable things they didn’t have, and one thing they did have that I didn’t. That was drugs.”

Caine blames drugs for the rise in hoodlum culture that Harry Brown portrays. “In the end,” he says, “they wipe out all feeling for the other person.”

But despite strong feelings on the subject, Caine believes making Harry Brown taught him something.

“This movie changed me,” he said “in as much as I started out thinking, ‘Let’s go out and make a movie about killing all these scumbags,’ and then I met these people and realized they were helpless just as much as the victims and they had been neglected and they need help.”

It’s been a long time since Caine lived in Elephant and Castle. After six decades of making films, he’s a film icon, which, true to his humble roots, is a title he has trouble accepting.

“There’s not a special icon bar where you go, meet up and learn what to do,” he says. “I just consider myself lucky.”