Happy Canada Day!
It’s time to look at some of the best directors from the friendliest and moosiest country in the world! What do you mean there are no directors from Cananda? I have to beg to differ! Canada is teeming with big and talented directors who helm the most wonderful treats of cinematic fare. Transcending from the money bags to the independents, the Great White North has delivered some of the most wonderful directors. And hopefully, with this list heaving with both the old and the new, they can inspire some more Canadian people to get up and get behind a camera.
Born in Toronto, Ontario, the horror master has created ingenious movies that have captivated the imagines of sickos and cinephiles like myself. Alluring, disturbing and quite frankly, impeccable, Cronenberg's list includes Videodrome, Crash, The Fly and more recently Cosmopolis. His new work, Maps to the Stars, have already polarised critics at Cannes and could yet again offer a talking point for movie fans everywhere. Scaring us of nearly everything and taking us down the dark path to our own humanity makes Cronenberg an infallible genius.
Xavier Dolan is possibly a name that none of you have heard. I am here to tell you that you need to sit down and learn it. Directing some unforgettable indie flicks of recent year, Dolan has mastered the visceral and the visual, combining them for some glorious treats. His most recent fare was Tom at the Farm, which send powerful shockwaves through the LGBT community, though was missed this year by a lot of people. However, unforgettable semi-autobiographical movie I Killed My Mother and his wonderful French film Heartbeats have solidified this bilingual director as an incredible talent in the world of acting. He also does dubbing work for the likes of Harry Potter and South Park.
Oh look, it’s Mr Money Bags himself, James Cameron. Of course you have heard of this one and, yes, it’s kind of hard not to write this and not poke fun at his often vapid attempts to make money. However, if you go back over his catalogue, way before Avatar plagiarised Pocahontas and Fern Gully respectively, he also created some phenomenal science-fiction treats. Just look at his stellar work for Aliens, The Terminator and The Abyss, these terrifying and imaginative feats should not go unrecognised just because a few million dollars went to his head and thus replaced his talent. Hopefully, he will go full circle and come back to his roots but for now, this is much a celebration of his 80s and early 90s work. And, why not, Titanic.
Sarah Polley first started off as an actress. Her best known work included Dawn of the Dead, Splice and Mr Nobody. However, the world really started paying attention when she began doing her directorial work. Her portfolio includes the stirring drama Away From Her as her debut. She then went on to complete the Michelle Williams and Seth Rogen romantic comedy Take This Waltz and more recently the beautiful Stories We Tell. She is at the helm of Looking at Alaska, the latest adaptation from John Green after the success of The Fault in Our Stars. Luckily, the director has enough going for her that it will be glorious.
It will be hard to have a list of Canadian Directors without mentioning the most prolific Norman Jewison. This now 87-year old director from Toronto has created some outstanding movies for us. Ranging from the original The Thomas Crown Affair, Jesus Christ Superstar and Fiddler on the Roof, creating the most fantastic collection of films. What Jewison did was make some of the best movies that perpetuate different cultures, showcasing a wide range of, at the time, controversial topics and allowing them to enthuse with popular culture. His determination to the arts and his endearing products are an asset not just to the cinematic community, but to the world.