Weekend Picks

100th Post!

Oddly enough, I’m celebrating the hundredth post of Weekend Picks by making it the last one on SAPL Readers Blog!

The Readers Blog has been such a great place to connect with you all, especially during the pandemic when our doors were closed! But, we’ve found a smoother way for you to discover all of our favourite films, books, and authors! All you have to do is follow us (Instagram, Twitter, Facebook) and we’ll link you to our absolute best and more, including Weekend Picks!

Lastly, I truly look forward to this weekly opportunity to share so many amazing and entertaining movies with you. So to celebrate 100 Weekend Picks and self indulge just a bit more, here are my top ten library films. Though they’re not in any particular order, they appear with some intention as they are on the DVD or Blu-Ray format, something that our collection is still very, very strong with!

Thank you and enjoy!

 

Geoffrey

 

The Master

15 Superb Stills from The Master (2012) - Our Culture

The Red Shoes

Destructive Love and The Red Shoes – Cineccentric

Barry Lyndon

Barry Lyndon (1975) | MUBI

Malcolm X

No Other Actor Can Do What Denzel Washington Does in Malcolm X

Laurence Anyways

Laurence Anyways (2012) | MUBI

Glengarry Glen Ross

Glengarry Glen Ross had the brass balls to ignore conventional film wisdom / The Dissolve

Army of Shadows

Army of Shadows (1969) | The Criterion Collection

Sunset Boulevard

Nostalgic Impulse: Sunset Boulevard (1950) | Pop Verse

The Fly

The Fly (1986) – Midnight Only

Listen Up Philip

#movie quotes from so i do what i do

… and many more.

Weekend Picks

Asian Heritage Month Picks Pt.II

You just go right on ahead and ease yourself into the long weekend with some classic picks for Asian Heritage Month!

Enjoy, everyone!

Funeral Parade of Roses

An electrifying journey into the nether-regions of the late-’60s Tokyo underworld.

Arab Blues

Selma, a psychoanalyst, deals with a cast of colorful new patients after returning home to Tunisia to open a practice.

Burning

Deliveryman Jongsu is out on a job when he runs into Haemi, a girl who once lived in his neighborhood. She asks if he’d mind looking after her cat while she’s away on a trip to Africa. On her return she introduces to Jongsu an enigmatic young man named Ben, who she met during her trip. And one day Ben tells Jongsu about his most unusual hobby…

The Farewell

A headstrong Chinese-American woman returns to China when her beloved grandmother is given a terminal diagnosis. Billi struggles with her family’s decision to keep grandma in the dark about her own illness as they all stage an impromptu wedding to see grandma one last time.

Tokyo Sonata 

Ryûhei Sasaki is keeping a secret from his wife, Megumi and his two teenage sons. Even though he leaves the house every day, he’s not really going to work. He’s going to an employment office. He recently lost his job due to outsourcing, but is determined to find another position, all while supporting an old friend who is also out of work. But when Megumi accidentally finds out Ryûhei’s secret and doesn’t tell him, her trust in him, and their marriage, suffers.

The Cave of the Yellow Dog

The little nomad girl, Nansal, finds a baby dog in the Mongolian veld, who becomes her best friend – against all rejections of her parents. A story about a Mongolian family of nomads – their traditional way of life and the rising call of the City.

 

Offbeat Book Club | Spring Meeting

Deacon King Kong
by James McBride

“McBride populates the Cause with characters who persevere with love and compassion for each other, unwavering faith in God and community, and lots of humor. Bighearted and sprawling, Deacon King Kong cements McBride as a master storyteller.” Shelf Awareness.

Further Reading

New Yorker Review

EW | Author on his literary heroes and the books he wished he’d written

Audible Blog interview

Watch & Listen

NPR| James McBride on the Kindness that Shaped Him

PBS | Social Justice and Deacon King Kong

 

Tuesday Afternoon Book Club | June Selection

Five Little Indians
by Michelle Good

Print eBook

The Tuesday Afternoon Book Club meets on the third Tuesday of the month at 2:00 PM at the Downtown Library.

Book Club Kit copies are available for participants upon request from the Adult Information Desk (780-459-1682).

Please register here to discuss Michelle Good’s award-winning timely novel Five Little Indians.

Taken from their families when they are very small and sent to a remote, church-run residential school, Kenny, Lucy, Clara, Howie and Maisie are barely out of childhood when they are finally released after years of detention.

Alone and without any skills, support or families, the teens find their way to the seedy and foreign world of Downtown Eastside Vancouver, where they cling together, striving to find a place of safety and belonging in a world that doesn’t want them. The paths of the five friends cross and crisscross over the decades as they struggle to overcome, or at least forget, the trauma they endured during their years at the Mission.

Fuelled by rage and furious with God, Clara finds her way into the dangerous, highly charged world of the American Indian Movement. Maisie internalizes her pain and continually places herself in dangerous situations. Famous for his daring escapes from the school, Kenny can’t stop running and moves restlessly from job to job—through fishing grounds, orchards and logging camps—trying to outrun his memories and his addiction. Lucy finds peace in motherhood and nurtures a secret compulsive disorder as she waits for Kenny to return to the life they once hoped to share together. After almost beating one of his tormentors to death, Howie serves time in prison, then tries once again to re-enter society and begin life anew.

With compassion and insight, Five Little Indians chronicles the desperate quest of these residential school survivors to come to terms with their past and, ultimately, find a way forward. (Publisher)

The Author

A Canadian Press interview

A Quill & Quire interview

A Globe and Mail article

A Toronto Star review

The Ides Book Club discussion questions

WATCH & LISTEN

Michelle Good on why she wrote Five Little Indians || TIFA 2020 (2:07 min.)

Other video interviews

Weekend Picks

Asian Heritage Month

This month we embrace the opportunity to celebrate Asian Heritage Month in Canada! You can join the celebration with these stunners on film!

Enjoy!

Norwegian Wood

Set in the 1960s, high school student Toru Watanabe loses his only friend Kizuki after he commits suicide. Toru, now looking for a new life, enters a university in Tokyo. By chance, Toru meets Kizuki’s ex-girlfriend Naoko in the university. They grow close because they both share the same loss.

Days

Kang lives alone in a big house, Non in a small apartment in town. They meet, and then part, their days flowing on as before.

After an emotional exchange between a Lebanese Christian and a Palestinian refugee escalates, the men end up in a court case that gets national attention.

The Breadwinner

A headstrong young girl in Afghanistan, ruled by the Taliban, disguises herself as a boy in order to provide for her family.

 

Seniors Book Club | June Selection

Taken by the Muse
by Anne Wheeler

Print | eBook

This Library-led book club meets on the second Wednesday of the month at 2 PM at the Downtown Library.

Book Club Kit copies are available for participants. Visit the Adult Information Desk (2nd floor, Downtown Library) to get your book.

Please register to discuss Taken by the Muse, a humorous and revelatory memoir by legendary Canadian filmmaker, Anne Wheeler.

Anne Wheeler’s creative non-fiction stories tell of her serendipitous journey in the seventies, when she broke with tradition and found her own way to becoming a filmmaker and raconteur.

Join this celebrated screenwriter and director as she travels south of Mombasa after calling off her wedding; attempts to gain acceptance in a male-dominated film collective; travels to India to visit friends who are devoted to a radical Master, and ultimately discovers her sense of purpose and passion close to home, sharing stories that would otherwise be lost about ordinary people living extraordinary lives.

FURTHER READING

Author Biography 

Author Website

INTERVIEW: Taken with Anne Wheeler | The Tyee

INTERVIEW: Muse you can use: Filmmaker Anne Wheeler dips into a past that helped guide her future | Vancouver Sun

INTERVIEW: Canadian director Anne Wheeler traces her path in new memoir | Edmonton Journal

REVIEW | Quill & Quire

REVIEW | Alberta Views

WATCH & LISTEN

INTERVIEW: Anne Wheeler at STARFest 2021 | St. Albert Public Library

INTERVIEW: Episode 163: Anne Wheeler | YVR Screen Scene Podcast

INTERVIEW: Making Movie History: Anne Wheeler | National Film Board of Canada

Monday Evening Book Club | June Selection

Leonard and Hungry Paul
by Ronan Hession

Print

The Monday Evening Book Club meets on the second Monday of the month at 7:00 PM online via Zoom.

Book Club Kit copies are available for participants upon request from the Adult Information Desk (780-459-1682).

Please register here to discuss Ronan Hession’s charming novel Leonard and Hungry Paul.

A disarming novel that asks a simple question- Can gentle people change the world?

In this charming and truly unique debut, popular Irish musician Ronan Hession tells the story of two single, thirty-something men who still live with their parents and who are . . . nice. They take care of their parents and play board games together. They like to read. They take satisfaction from their work. They are resolutely kind. And they realize that none of this is considered . . . normal.

Leonard and Hungry Paul is the story of two friends struggling to protect their understanding of what’s meaningful in life. It is about the uncelebrated people of this world – the gentle, the meek, the humble. And as they struggle to persevere, the book asks a surprisingly enthralling question- Is it really them against the world, or are they on to something?

The Author

An Irish Times interview

Bookmunch Blog interview

Discussion Questions

Guardian book review

Chicago Review of Books review

WATCH & LISTEN

Video interviews

Weekend Picks

Mother’s Day Picks

To all the moms out there, with love.

The Library.

Mermaids

Fifteen-year-old Charlotte is tired of her wacky mom moving their family to a different town any time she feels it is necessary. When they move to a small Massachusetts town and Mrs. Flax begins dating a shopkeeper, Charlotte and her 9-year-old sister, Kate, hope that they can finally settle down.

Terms of Endearment

Aurora, a finicky woman, is in search of true love while her daughter faces marital issues. Together, they help each other deal with problems and find reasons to live a joyful life.

Mother and daughter bicker over everything – what Anna wears, whom she likes and what she wants to do when she’s older. In turn, Anna detests Tess’s fiancé. When a magical fortune cookie switches their personalities, they each get a peek at how the other person feels, thinks and lives.

Lady Bird

A California high school student plans to escape from her family and small town by going to college in New York, much to the disapproval of wildly loving, deeply opinionated and strong-willed mother.

Four sisters come of age in America in the aftermath of the Civil War.

 

 

Weekend Picks

Coming Soon

Dog

An army ranger and his dog embark on a road trip along the Pacific Coast Highway to attend a friend’s funeral.

The Batman

In his second year of fighting crime, Batman uncovers corruption in Gotham City that connects to his own family while facing a serial killer known as the Riddler.

Cyrano

A man ahead of his time, Cyrano de Bergerac dazzles whether with ferocious wordplay at a verbal joust or with brilliant swordplay in a duel. But, convinced that his appearance renders him unworthy of the love of a devoted friend, the luminous Roxanne, Cyrano has yet to declare his feelings for her—and Roxanne has fallen in love, at first sight, with Christian.

Jackass Forever

Celebrating the joy of being back together with your best friends and a perfectly executed shot to the dingdong, the original jackass crew return for another round of hilarious, wildly absurd, and often dangerous displays of comedy with a little help from some exciting new cast. Johnny and the team push the envelope even further in Jackass Forever.

 

 

Weekend Picks

National Poetry Month Ed.

Celebrate poetry everywhere in Canada this month, this weekend through these captivating films, and the next two years with St. Albert’s new Poet Laureate, Lauren Seal!

Bright Star

In 1818, high-spirited young Fanny Brawne finds herself increasingly intrigued by the handsome but aloof poet John Keats, who lives next door to her family friends the Dilkes. After reading a book of his poetry, she finds herself even more drawn to the taciturn Keats. Although he agrees to teach her about poetry, Keats cannot act on his reciprocated feelings for Fanny, since as a struggling poet he has no money to support a wife.

Black Butterflies

Confronted by Apartheid and a father who was Minister of Censorship, Ingrid Jonker searched for a home, searched for love. With men like Jack Cope and André Brink she found much love, but no home. Later, in his first speech to the South African Parliament Nelson Mandela read her poem “The Dead Child of Nyanga” and addressed her as one of the finest poets of South Africa.

Howl

It’s San Francisco in 1957, and an American masterpiece is put on trial. Howl, the film, recounts this dark moment using three interwoven threads: the tumultuous life events that led a young Allen Ginsberg to find his true voice as an artist, society’s reaction (the obscenity trial), and mind-expanding animation that echoes the startling originality of the poem itself. All three coalesce in a genre-bending hybrid that brilliantly captures a pivotal moment-the birth of a counterculture.