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Showing posts from 2020

End of Year Viewing Update for Christmas Eve

  First a lament for the cherished ByTowne Cinema which will be closing permanently in a few days, another casualty of this awful pandemic year.  Less than 15 minutes walking distance from my house in Ottawa, its big screen will be greatly missed.  Indeed, on January 1 there will be only a single theatre screen still open across the entire Ottawa-Gatineau metro area. [More comment at: .]   What theatrical presence will be left? [Have a listen to: . ] This is the season for “best of” lists.   Usually the National Board of Review ( ) is the first.   But it is delaying its announcement till January 26.   Mine will also wait till next January but for some early comment see:

December Viewing Views and Reviews Update

  I’m grateful to have been able to see 5 of the movies reviewed on the big screen at my cherished Ottawa independent repertory theatres: Mank , Sound of Metal , and Jimmy Carter: Rock &Roll President at the ByTowne Cinema ( ) and Percy and Zappa at the Mayfair Theatre ( ) which opened its doors during the Depression in 1932. Cinema can shine a light during difficult times.  (Indeed it’s worth noting that Hollywood’s greatest year was in 1939.)  So it is with great regret that today the owner of the ByTowne announced that it will be closing permanently on December 31.  I have found it to be a cinematic treasure for over 40 years.  It’s big-screen atmosphere cannot be replaced by the proliferation on online streaming options.  This is a truly sad loss and it means that there will not a single theatre left in the entire central area of the nation’s capital.  The ByTowne will be greatly missed!  I’m going there tomorrow to see the Ne

November Viewing Update

  Hallelujah, I did actually get to see 2 movies on the big screen: Ammonite at Ottawa’s ByTowne Cinema ( ) and The Climb at the Mayfair ( ).  God knows for how long.  Beyond that,  are streaming options galore. Netflix’s fourth season of “The Crown” is earning plaudits .. more next time. HBO has two excellent new series: “The Undoing” and the docuseries “Murder on Middle Beach” helmed by a son investigating his mother’s murder.  Ottawa’s European Union film festival in its 35 th year is presenting 27 films—for the first time online across Canada (check out: ).  November 13 started with a wonderful 2018 German film All About Me (the German title translates as “The Boy Needs Fresh Air”). Director Caroline Link’s focus is on the boyhood of Hans-Peter (Hape) Kerkeling based on his autobiography.  One of Germany’s most loved comedians he overcame family tragedy (and in 2001also penned a memoir of walkin