Hockey at the 2017 Toronto International Film Festival

This year at the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF), amidst the star-laden Hollywood premieres and films from 74 countries, two (unsurprisingly Canadian) films debuted that use hockey as a lens to examine larger social issues. Indian Horse (directed by Stephen Campanelli): The powerful story from wonderful novel (reviewed by Mark Norman here) reaches the screen largely…

Sport, Hockey, and Film: An Interview with Russell Field, Executive Director of the Canadian Sport Film Festival

On Saturday and Sunday, the 5th annual Canadian Sport Film Festival (CSFF) is taking place in Toronto at the TIFF Lightbox. As usual, the festival will feature a variety of sport-related documentaries that cover a range of topics. Notably, this year’s program includes two films that focus on hockey: Lace Bite and The Uluit: Champions…

Review: “Hockey: A People’s History” (2006)

In 2006, the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC) aired a 10-part series entitled Hockey: A People’s History (HAPH). Adopting the approach used in its popular 2000 miniseries Canada: A People’s History, the CBC focused in this series on the experience of Canadians with the sport of hockey for over a century. Beginning with early ball and…

Film Review: “Theo Fleury: Playing With Fire” (2011)

Theo Fleury: Playing With Fire is a 2012 documentary that paints an intimate portrait of former NHL player Theoren Fleury. The film, which shares its title with Fleury’s 2009 autobiography Playing With Fire, was screened in Toronto at the Hot Docs film festival, where I watched it on Saturday. Fleury’s story is complex, tragic and…

Understanding Goon: Nice Guys Finish First

I had the pleasure of writing this review with my friend and colleague at Queen’s University, Marty Clark. Marty is an emerging scholar in the field of Hockey Studies and a hell of a nice guy in his own right. His research focuses primarily on conceptions of whiteness within the NHL and his PhD dissertation…

Goon: A hockey movie with poor timing and taste

On February 24, 2012, actor Sean William Scott (you may know him from silver screen classics such as American Pie and The Dukes of Hazard) will be staring in a hockey movie titled, Goon.  The IMDB synopsis reads: Labelled an outcast by his brainy family, a bouncer overcomes long odds to lead a team of…