These last ten films I’ve screened reflect a long-awaited return to the theatre experience with Dune and The French Dispatch, some family-friendly spookiness with Muppets Haunted Mansion, Bud Abbott and Lou Costello Meet Frankenstein, and The Mad, Mad, Mad Monsters (a longstanding MMC! favourite), and some Saskatoon Fantastic Film Festival prep with Masking Threshold (an intriguing and very distinctive experience) and All Sorts (an enjoyably surreal take on office life). Still, my favourite screenings were Dona Flor and Her Two Husbands, a Brazilian classic discovered by way of the MUBI podcast, and Maya and the Three, an epic animated event compliments of Netflix. MMC! is an absolute sucker for Mexican content and for Mesoamerican (and South American) civilizations and mythologies, and so Maya and Three was the action-spectacle fantasy I’ve always wanted. Look for Maya high up on MMC!’s “Best of 2021” list!
- Dona Flor and Her Two Husbands (Bruno Barreto, 1976)
- Masking Threshold (Johannes Grenzfurthner, 2021)
- All Sorts (J. Rick Castaneda, 2021)
- The Mad, Mad, Mad Monsters (Jules Bass and Arthur Rankin, Jr., 1972)
- Bud Abbott and Lou Costello Meet Frankenstein (Charles Barton, 1948)
- Muppets Haunted Mansion (Kirk R. Thatcher, 2021)
- The French Dispatch (Wes Anderson, 2021)
- Dune (Denis Villeneuve, 2021)
- Maya and the Three (Jorge R. Gutierrez, 2021)
- The Chill Factor (Christopher Webster, 1993)
Halloween produced some seasonally appropriate short film watches amongst these longer screenings, including Trick or Treat (Jack Hannah, 1952), It’s the Great Pumpkin Charlie Brown (Bill Melendez, 1966), and The Scariest Story Ever: A Mickey Mouse Halloween Spooktacular (Dave Wasson, Alonso Ramirez Ramos, and Eddie Trigueros, 2017). Even better, MMC! also wrapped up the super-sized, 38 episode, professional wrestling anime, Tiger Mask W (Toshiaki Komura, 2016-2017). Playing as a sequel to the 1969 anime series, Tiger Mask W follows Naoto Date, a young wrestler who assumes the Tiger Mask moniker to pursue vengeance on Global Wrestling Monopoly and its top fighter, Yellow Devil, after they destroy the promotion he works for and cripples his boss and mentor. On a parallel path of revenge is the manager’s son, Takuma Fuji, who assumes the identity of Tiger the Dark and infiltrates GWM. Wrestling fans will appreciate the added curiosity of observing GWM pit itself against real-life Japanese wrestling promotion, New Japan Pro-Wrestling, and seeing animated versions of its stars take centre stage in the series’ drama. Love that fighting spirit!