Real-life horror movie treatment of patients in “Brainwashed: The Secret CIA Experiments in Canada” which the Canadian government refuses to acknowledge and apologise for

Harvey Cashore, “Brainwashed: The Secret CIA Experiments in Canada” (The Fifth Estate, December 2017) As The Fifth Estate’s website post on this documentary says, the scenario might be straight out of a Hollywood B-grade horror movie plot: patients in a psychiatric hospital subjected to electro-shock treatment, rounds of drug treatment including hallucinatory drugs like LSD …

My Winnipeg: an intriguing blend of memoir, documentary and surreal dark fantasy in a paean to a little city on the prairie

Guy Maddin, “My Winnipeg” (2007) An unusual blend of memoir, documentary and dark fantasy, Guy Maddin’s “My Winnipeg” probably does more to promote his home city, out on the prairies in the middle of Canada and the entire North American continent, than a hundred thousand travel agency brochures could do. Instead of presenting an overgrown …

Cosmopolis: profound road-movie meditation on corporate nihilism and its destruction of people

David Cronenberg, “Cosmopolis” (2012) A profound and thoughtful film on the nature of the corporate fascist mind-set, “Cosmopolis”  is a quasi-cyberpunk road movie across New York City. Billionaire asset manager Eric Packer (Robert Pattinson) sets out in his stretch limousine early in the morning for a hair-cut appointment. His path is not straightforward for the …

Changing Your Mind (The Nature of Things): informative documentary on neural plasticity spoiled by breathless commercial presentation

Mike Sheerin, “Changing Your Mind (The Nature of Things)” (2010) Hosted by David Suzuki, “Changing Your Mind” is an episode from the long-running science documentary “The Nature of Things” which is aired by the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation. Seems funny in a way as the CBC is Canada’s equivalent of Australia’s ABC and the UK’s BBC …

A Dangerous Method: lavish but perfunctory treatment of three psychoanalysts

David Cronenberg, “A Dangerous Method” (2011) Adapted from Christopher Hampton’s stage play “The Talking Cure” which itself is based on John Kerr’s book “A Most Dangerous Method: The Story of Jung, Freud and Sabina Spielrein”, this historical drama revolves around the tense professional and personal relationships formed by famous psychoanalysts Carl Jung and Sigmund Freud …