“In honour of the huge David Cronenberg exhibit and retrospective currently happening at the TIFF Bell Lightbox in Toronto (running until January 19th), Dork Shelf talks to a plethora of film writers, personalities, programmers, podcasters, and filmmakers about what their favourite Cronenberg films are.
Here’s Richard’s personal take on Videodrome: “I had only lived in Toronto for a few years when Videodrome was released in 1983. Compared to my tiny home town the city was a wonderland; wide open and full of possibilities. CITY-TV was the coolest station in the world, with Baby Blue movies on late at night, music videos in prime time and Mark Daly’s booming voice as the glue that held it all together. I wanted to work there, be part of the something new and different. Something that was steering Toronto the Good into uncharted waters. Then I saw David Cronenberg’s film and read about how it was VERY loosely based on CITY-TV head honcho Moses Znaimer. Somehow this bit of information enhanced the movie for me, as though every time I turned on the television I was engaging in an act of rebellion. For sure the Late Great movies were never going to feature a snuff film, and nor did I want them to, but as a pop culture sponge there was something intoxicating to me about the connection between what I was seeing on the big screen and its relationship, no matter how tenuous, to my real life. Videodrome spoke to me in a way that other films that more closely echoed my experience didn’t. Goin’ Down the Road should have appealed to my Maritime roots, but I didn’t come to Toronto looking for lawyerin’ and doctorin’ jobs, I came for adventure and to be adventourous and that was exactly what Videodrome provided for me.”