Skip to main content

Review: Dreamland (2020)

No one in Canada makes movies quite like Bruce McDonald. He dabbles in genre fare, but puts his own unique spin on it. Why? As he said in our interview: the stories have been told, so why not tell them a little differently?

That's my Cliff's Notes version of what he said, by the way.

His latest, Dreamland, is very much an art film disguised as a crime movie. It's got gangsters and hitmen, a morally ambiguous hero who tries to do the right thing, human trafficking... all the makings of a gritty crime tale.

But it also has vampires, takes place in a magical... ish... kingdom, and doesn't make a lot of sense outside the context of the story being told. Oh, and two of the characters look alike, which is a key component to how the story unfolds.

Dreamland is a perfect title for this movie. The whole thing looks, feels and works according to a dream structure. Like I said; it makes perfect sense while watching it. View it as linear, traditional feature film and it doesn't. Your enjoyment hinges on your ability to let go and just take Dreamland in.

I was able to do that, and enjoyed it immensely. This is a great looking ride. Not so much a movie, but an experience. McDonald pulls it off beautifully! And it has one of the best -- and most unexpected -- endings I've seen in a while.

The cast -- which includes McDonald mainstay Stephen McHattie, along with Henry Rollins and Juliette Lewis -- is pitch perfect. I can't remember Lewis ever being this good, and having this much fun. And Tomas Lemarquis is the kookiest vampire I've ever seen. I loved his performance!

Dreamland isn't my usual pint of ale, but I dug it a lot. It's a Good!

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

#CocktailHour: Slushtail

  Summer approaches, inspiring thoughts of sunshine, backyard parties, and having a tip and sip with friends.  With that in mind, I bring you this week sunny beverage. To make a slushtail, mix a can of frozen orange juice, a can of frozen lemonade (or limeade), a can of pineapple juice, a couple cups of black tea (or English Breakfast), and two cups of bourbon- such as Southern Comfort, in a pitcher.  When it's all nicely mixed, put it in the freezer until it's a nice slushy consistency. Scoop the slush into a cocktail glass, and pour in some Sprite or 7-Up.  Add a little umbrella for some frivolous fun, and a straw. Voila!  Ready to enjoy. This is a very refreshing drink.  The fruit juices, Sprite, and bourbon- when chilled makes for a great punch-like drink.  The bourbon doesn't overwhelm juices.   In fact, they are all nicely balanced in terms of flavors.  The sourness of the citrus fruits contrasts well with the slightly sweeter Southern Comfort.  It was refreshing enou

Marcus Flor vs Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse

In film, there's nothing I enjoy more than passionate creativity. Compared to the sea of mediocrity surrounding it, Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse is practically overflowing with it. This animated movie is vibrant, kinetic, and extremely inventive with its art style. On top of all that, this is just a solid movie. It tells its story with sincerity and tact, always focusing on the important aspects of Miles' emotional journey. The script wastes no time on pointless scenes or moments, which also gives the film an energetic rhythm that draws you in. One of the other great aspects of this movie is its reinvention of the Spider-Man story. It's clever writing demonstrates a true understanding of the webslinger, and offers commentary on the current state of his movie adaptations. In the end, you get a film both Spidey fans and non-fans can enjoy. Above all other aspects, what I like most about Spider-Verse is how fun it is. It demonstrates quality animation and filmmaking doesn

From The Basement - the "final" three

Just a gentle reminder From The Basement returns next Friday -- June 11 -- to the mighty Radio NL with an all-new episode! That's the good news. The bad news it'll be the first of our final three prime-time shows. What, you might ask? Are you bastards quitting AGAIN!?!? No. No we're not. We learned our lesson the last time. Shawn and I's long-running show will return to being "just a podcast," and not adhering to any set broadcast schedule. Why, you ask? Our lives are becoming increasingly busy outside of The Basement, and it's getting harder for Shawn and I to keep up with the latest movies, TV shows and entertainment news. We'd rather cease our weekly duties than produce an inferior product. Simple as that. Much thanks to Howie Reimer and the Radio NL crew for hosting us the last three years, first as a Friday morning segment, then as a prime-time series. It's been a blast! Don't worry, we're not coasting on these last three episodes. T