Richard joins CP24 anchor Kelly Linehan to have a look at the weekend’s new movies including “How to Train Your Dragon: the Hidden World” and the charming “Fighting With My Family” and German Oscar contender “Never Look Away.”
Richard sits in with CTV NewsChannel anchor Jennifer Burke to have a look at the weekend’s big releases including “How to Train Your Dragon: the Hidden World” and the charming “Fighting With My Family” and German Oscar contender “Never Look Away.”
Richard has a look at the fourth season of “Pop Life” and three new movies coming to theatres, “How to Train Your Dragon: the Hidden World,” the charming “Fighting With My Family” and the German Oscar nominee “Never Look Away” with CFRA Morning Rush guest host Matt Harris.
A weekly feature from from ctvnews.ca! The Crouse Review is a quick, hot take on the weekend’s biggest movies! This week Richard looks at the further adventures of Hiccup and Toothless in “How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World,” the real life story of “Fighting With My Family” and the German Oscar nominee “Never Look Away.”
Everyone knows wrestling is fixed, stage for p ure entertainment, but behind the costumes, the death matches and the five moves of doom are real people. “Fighting with My Family,” a new comedy written and directed by Stephen Merchant, dropkicks one real life story from the ring to the big screen.
Norwich England native Saraya-Jade Bevis (Florence Pugh) comes from a wrestling family. Her parents Ricky (Nick Frost) and Julia (Lena Headey) a.k.a. Rowdy Ricky and Sweet Saraya and siblings all throw down in the ring. When WWE trainer Hutch Morgan (Vince Vaughn) offers Saraya-Jade, known as Britani, and brother Zodiac Zak (Jack Lowden) a chance to audition it looks like they’re on the verge of going big time.
Well, at least one of them is.
After receiving some backstage advice from The Rock (who is also a producer on the film) and trying out, Hutch only calls one name, Saraya-Jade. Switching her name to the more American sounding Paige (inspired by the Rose McGowan character on “Charmed”) she begins in a training camp in Orlando where she will be assessed to see if she has the right stuff for the WWE. She’s an outsider who must fight for every win, both in and out of the ring. “Don’t worry about being the next me,” Says The Rock. “Be the first you.”
There are suplexes, trash talk galore, likeable actors like Nick Frost Lena Hadley and Vince Vaughn but it isn’t the wrestling moves and sports movie clichés that sell this movie. It’s the film’s beating heart, Florence Pugh, who plays Paige as a mix of empathy, ambition and self-doubt. Her path is a difficult one, from her brother’s jealousy to American audiences taunting her because of her jet-black hair, English accent and piercings. “Come on Ozzy Osbourne! Sing something!” We’ve seen this underdog character before, but by the time she says, “I am a freak. This belongs to the misfits who don’t belong,” it’s hard not to call a TKO on Pugh’s performance.
“Fighting with My Family” is about wrestling but like all good sports movies it isn’t just about what happens in the inevitable game or match at the end of the picture. It is a more universal story about outcasts who create community through sport and heart combined with the kind of “soap opera in spandex” storytelling that has made wrestling so popular.
Richard sits in on the CJAD Montreal morning show with host Andrew Carter to talk about the fourth season of “Pop Life” and two new movies coming to theatres, “How to Train Your Dragon: the Hidden World” and the charming “Fighting With My Family.”
A weekly feature from from ctvnews.ca! The Crouse Review is a quick, hot take on the weekend’s biggest movies! This week Richard looks at the historical betrayals of “Mary Queen of Scots,” the cortex boiling animation of “Spider-Man: Into The Spider-Verse” and the drug addiction drama of “Ben is Back.”
Richard sits in with CTV NewsChannel anchor Marcia MacMillan to have a look at the weekend’s big releases including the wild and webby “Spider-Man: Into The Spider-Verse,” the political drama of “Mary Queen of Scots” and the Julia Roberts’s drug drama “Ben is Back.”
Mr. Parker, my grade nine history teacher, believed in learning by rote. Once a day thirty schoolmates and I would assemble in his class and were invariably confronted with Mr. Parker in his black suit dusted with chalk from writing, in perfect script, three chalk boards worth of notes. “Write it down and learn it.” A mishmash of dates and names, his notes were detailed but ultimately did not bring the story to life.
Watching “Mary Queen of Scots,” a new historical drama starring Saoirse Ronan and Margot Robbie, I was immediately transported back to Mr. Parker’s class.
The convoluted tale begins in 1561 with Mary Stuart (Ronan) returning to Scotland being raised Catholic in France and widowed at age eighteen. She comes home to a world of intrigue. Her half-brother, the Earl of Moray (James McArdle) would seem to be an ally but holds resentment that he will lose his exalted place as King with her return. She also faces opposition from John Knox (David Tennant), a religious leader who brands the queen a harlot, unfit for the throne.
Meanwhile in England Mary’s twenty-five-year-old Protestant cousin Queen Elizabeth I (Robbie, under an inch of make-up) has a certain amount of sympathy for her long lost relative. The monarch understand what it means to be a woman ruler in a world of men but her advisers, including her chief council William Cecil (Guy Pearce) see Mary as a threat who must be dealt with.
Cue the intrigue and sharpen those axes.
There is a lot going on in “Mary Queen of Scots.” Political backbiting, betrayal, toxic patriarchy, romance, more betrayal and equal parts empathy and cruelty are all on display, making an already expansive story—it spans roughly twenty years—feel overstuffed. Locations, dates and motivations blur as the courtly manipulations pile atop one another, leaving behind a nicely acted film that feels weighted down by an excess of intrigue.
Robbie and Ronan, rivals for the Best Actress Oscar last year, share just one scene, an historically inaccurate meeting that features the film’s best moments. As Mary shifts from pleading for sisterhood to imperiously claiming the crown of England for herself—“I am a Stuart, the rightful queen.”—there is more drama in those few minutes than in the film’s entire middle section.
“Mary Queen of Scots” has some admirable, timely qualities. Colour-blind casting—most notably through the work of Gemma Chan and Adrian Lester—Mary’s attitude toward the gender-fluid minstrel David Rizzio (Ismael Cruz Cordova) and the portrayal of Mary and Elizabeth as strong willed women are thoroughly modern and to be commended. It’s too bad the narrative machinations bog down what otherwise is a fine tale of political manoeuvring.