To commemorate Women’s History Month, writer/director/journalist Chandler Levack has joined forces with Hollywood Suite to curate a day of programming featuring the work of women filmmakers and performers. The films are set to air on Hollywood Suite’s 70s, 80s, 90s, and 00s channels on March 30, 2023, and will be available to stream all month on Hollywood Suite On Demand.
“All of my favourite movies will screen this month, including life-changing gems like Claudia Weill’s Girlfriends and Susan Seidelman’s Smithereens, and true boundary-breaking auteur films by Sofia Coppola and Elaine May,” said Levack. “The series ends with two films by Canadian geniuses that totally blew my mind when I first watched them and prove that the future of Canadian cinema is female — Joyce Wong’s Wexford Plaza and Grace Glowicki’s wholly original and jaw-dropping Tito — both shot for under $150,000. It’s a true honour to be asked to curate this series. In case you didn’t know, I like movies! Especially when they put women in the centre of the frame.”
“Chandler is an exceptional filmmaker and fierce champion of talented women,” added Sharon Stevens, Vice President, Programming for Hollywood Suite. “With her award-winning feature debut I Like Movies now in Canadian theatres, she is the perfect person to lead our Women’s History Month programming.”
Hollywood Suite’s Women in Film collection, airing throughout March and available all month on demand, features 50 movies that showcase talented women in front of and behind the camera. Discover the collection at hollywoodsuite.ca/women-in-film.
Levack’s Guest Programmer Picks
A NEW LEAF (1971)
Director: Elaine May
Starring: Elaine May, Doris Roberts, Renée Taylor
ALICE DOESN’T LIVE HERE ANYMORE (1974)
Director: Martin Scorsese
Starring: Ellen Burstyn, Leila Goldoni
Director: Claudia Weill
Starring: Melanie Mayron
FAST TIMES AT RIDGEMONT HIGH (1982)
Director: Amy Heckerling
Starring: Jennifer Jason Leigh, Phoebe Cates
Director: Susan Seidelman
Starring: Susan Berman
THE WITCHES OF EASTWICK (1987)
Director: George Miller
Starring: Cher, Susan Sarandon, Michelle Pfeiffer
Director: Sally Potter
Starring: Tilda Swinton
THE VIRGIN SUICIDES (1999)
Director: Sofia Coppola
Starring: Kirsten Dunst, Kathleen Turner
GRACE OF MY HEART (1996)
Director: Alison Anders
Starring: Illeana Douglas, Jennifer Leigh Warren
Director: Grace Glowicki
Starring: Grace Glowicki
THE DIARY OF A TEENAGE GIRL (2015)
Director: Marielle Heller
Starring: Bel Powley, Kristin Wiig
WEXFORD PLAZA (2016)
Director: Joyce Wong
Starring: Reid Asselstine, Ellie Posadas
ABOUT HOLLYWOOD SUITE
Hollywood Suite owns and operates four exclusive HD channels featuring the iconic movies that defined the 70s, 80s, 90s and 2000s, plus essential Hollywood classics from the Golden Age, always uncut and commercial-free. With hundreds of movies every month on four HD channels and Hollywood Suite On Demand, Hollywood Suite provides an unparalleled value to consumers.
Hollywood Suite is available to over 10 million households across Canada, exclusively through Canadian television service providers and Amazon Prime Video Channels. Visit hollywoodsuite.ca for more Information.
ABOUT CHANDLER LEVACK
Chandler Levack, Writer/Director, Producer Chandler Levack grew up in Burlington, Ontario, and lives in Toronto where she studied cinema at the University of Toronto and screenwriting at the Canadian Film Centre. She has directed numerous music videos, earning two JUNO nominations. Also a veteran arts journalist and critic, she has contributed to such publications as The Globe & Mail, The Village Voice and Maisonneuve, with articles for the latter resulting in two Canadian National Magazine Awards nominations. Her short film We Forgot to Break Up (2017) premiered at TIFF and SXSW. I Like Movies is her feature debut.
By David Baldwin
High school senior Lawrence Kweller (Isaiah Lehtinen) likes movies. Scratch that, he is obsessed with movies. He watches them endlessly, riffing on his love for Stanley Kubrick to anyone who will listen. He is ambitious and just knows he is going to get into NYU’s film program where he will be taught by the likes of Todd Solondz. But this is the early 2000s – or more specifically, early 2000s era Burlington, Ontario – and Lawrence needs $90,000 to attend. So he gets a job at the local video store Sequels and quickly discovers that the movies are far different than reality.
After reading the Film’s description, I knew I was going to love I LIKE MOVIES. I just did not know just how much I would love I LIKE MOVIES. Writer/Director Chandler Levack hones in on an era of innocence and social naivety that feels so foreign in the modern day, yet rings true for someone like me whose life long obsession with film kicked off around the same time the film takes place. While I hope I was less of a pretentious asshole than Lawrence is, Lehtinen portrays the budding Cinephile brilliantly. Just thinking about him going off on why he cannot in good faith promote the new edition of Shrek on DVD is making me chuckle, as is a recurring joke around him needing to return an overdue VHS copy of Wild Things. No doubt it is this side of his personality that is going to speak to an entire generation of older Millennials.
All of that said, the Film is substantially darker than I thought it would be and does a great job of humanizing Lawrence in a way that setting the Film in the age of Social Media would have felt disingenuous. There is some genuine tragedy on display here, and watching Lehtinen weave through the tonal pivots like a seasoned professional is a truly beautiful experience. The Supporting Cast is great too, especially Romina D’Ugo as Sequels’ manager Alana. The Film does a terrific job juxtaposing her reality to Lawrence’s fantasy, and her mid-film monologue is dynamite.
While I can overlook some anachronisms (such as the updated Cineplex seating) more so than others (Tanner Zipchen as a hot customer is not a sentence I thought I would ever be writing), I think this is a fantastic directorial debut from Levack and is easily one of my favourite films of the Festival already.
Oh and shooting/framing the film in 4:3? Well played, Ms. Levack. Well played.
I LIKE MOVIES screens as follows at TIFF ’22 as follows:
Fri, Sept 9 IN-PERSON Scotiabank Theatre 6:15pm
Wed, Sept 14 IN-PERSON TIFF Bell Lightbox 6:30pm
Fri, Sept 16 IN-PERSON TIFF Bell Lightbox 9:45pm
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