John Waters: Film-maker, bad-taste monger

John Waters: Film-maker, bad-taste monger

Baltimore native John Waters, 65, with his trademark pencil-thin mustache, put a face to transgressive, shocking cinema in the 1970s when his film Pink Flamingos attracted a cult following at midnight screenings. Mainstream success followed in the 1980s with Hairspray. Now curating art and film programs and hoping to produce his latest film, the children’s Christmas adventure Fruitcake – his first since 2004’s A Dirty Shame – Mr. Waters recently released his sixth book, Role…

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Remembering Toronto’s history, with the help of the web

Remembering Toronto’s history, with the help of the web

The building at the west-end intersection of Dupont, Dundas and Annette streets was the site of an 1837 stagecoach robbery led by Toronto’s first mayor, William Lyon Mackenzie. Now, it’s a 24-hour Coffee Time. Times have changed in Toronto. Neil Ross, president of the West Toronto Junction Historical Society, counts the pre-Confederation tale among his favourite footnotes of Toronto lore. “Here’s the leader of the Upper Canada Rebellion, one day after marching armed men down…

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360 Screenings are bigger than surround sound

360 Screenings are bigger than surround sound

Mainstream movie-going is pretty straightforward: you pick a film, find out when and where it’s playing, then head out to the cinema. But for those who want to escape that monotony, how about a secret film held in an undisclosed location, not revealed until 24 hours before the event? That sense of excitement and discovery is what heritage-minded film programmers Ned Loach and Robert Gontier aim to achieve when they inaugurate 360 Screenings next Friday…

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Fixt Point puts neighbourhoods in the spotlight

Fixt Point puts neighbourhoods in the spotlight

Like a line out of a Stompin’ Tom Connors song, Fixt Point Theatre’s Lisa Marie DiLiberto was saddened by the outright homogenization of the cities she saw while travelling through Canada. “Everywhere I went, I saw the same big-box stores on the other side of town, forcing many of the smaller independent stores to close,” said the Toronto-based playwright. The Tale of a Town: Queen West, inaugurating the launch of Theatre Passe Muraille’s fall season,…

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Disgraceland art show offers a parade of Presleys

Disgraceland art show offers a parade of Presleys

A warning to those who revere the late Elvis Presley as a haloed patron saint of rock – a new art exhibit is showing the king of rock ’n’ roll at his most ghoulish and zombified. Using plaster Elvis busts from Honest Ed’s – a Toronto staple sold at the iconic department store for nearly thirty years – 10 local artists who dabble in the macabre are celebrating Presley’s place in the afterlife with the…

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Q&A: Luis Ceriz, owner, Suspect Video

Q&A: Luis Ceriz, owner, Suspect Video

Suspect Video & Culture opened 20 years ago this month, catering to Toronto’s cult film community in the pre-Internet, pre-DVD era. What kind of changes have you seen? The biggest shift is the amount of graphic detail in movies that you never would’ve gotten away with in the 1990s and certainly not in the 1980s. I remember having to import uncut copies of Dario Argento’s Suspiria from the U.S. because it was just impossible to…

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