We take a double dip into the pool of Canadian independent film makers tonight. Our first selection is the debut film from the Soska Sisters. The Canadian twins made the film Dead Hooker In A Trunk back in 2009 and now we're watching it. The Sisters play a couple of sisters in the film. The story is mostly about a group of young people who find a dead hooker in their car. They spend the whole movie trying to get rid of the body and getting hurt in the process. The Wikipedia says the Sisters are heavily influenced by directors like Rodriguez, Tarantino, Craven and Cronenberg. I could see that. There's lots of stuff in DHIAT that's similar to what you've seen in films by those other guys. Sadly, it's not as well written. There are scenes that work better than others and on the whole the movie, shot on video, looks fairly decent. The movie was the Sister's film school project and most of the cast played other behind the screen rolls. I wished it was better but I just didn't care that much for the characters and I didn't find it that entertaining. I read on the Wikipedia that in February 2016 the Sisters are slatted to remake David Cronenberg's Rabid. Not sure that was needed to be remade but there you go.
Our second film was the 1989 Bruce McDonald film called Roadkill. He's been mostly working as a TV director in his 35 year career but recently he directed the horror film Pontypool. You might have seen that. I like it and I liked Roadkill.
It's set in the world of crap bands who tour the small bars in Northern Ontario. Valerie Buhagiar, that's her up there with director Bruce McDonald, works for a music producer. The angry producer wants her to find a band who haven't shown up for their last 4 dates. She can't drive a car so she hires a cab to take her to the train station. The cab driver insists on taking her to Sudbury, from Toronto, a 400 KM journey. They find the band, the cabbie drives off with Valerie's luggage and money, Valeria loses the band and learns to drive.
Don McKellar plays a wanna-be serial killer. There's plenty of odd characters in Northern Ontario. Just like anywhere for the most part. The band is eventually united in Thunderbay but has a tragic ending. Pays to keep out of the music industry. Too many wackos.
The movie isn't as polished as the Soska Sister's film but it's got a much more interesting story, written by McDonald and Don McKellar, and more interesting characters. McKellar and McDonald would work together two years later in the 1991 film Highway 61. There's plenty of music, much of the sound track came from the late Nash The Slash. He even appears for a number in a club in the film. Joey Ramone has a cameo. Not a film that everyone would like but recommend to people that might like a low key rock 'n' roll version of The Heart of Darkness. Certainly learning to drive can be perilous. Adding rock 'n' roll and some cray-cray, it's no wonder people died.