Daily Film Dose is exactly what is sounds like: a blog featuring a new film review every single day! Run by Alan Bacchus, a Toronto-based filmmaker and writer, Daily Film Dose has been included on Blogs.com’s “10 Blogs for Serious Film Lovers” and on AMC’s Site of the Week. In addition to his daily review, Bacchus has got some great lists, like Top 20 Indiana Jones Moments, 10 Essential Mockumentaries, and one of his most popular, Great Long Takes in Cinema. There are also intriguing features like Where Have All the Great Composers Gone? And When Cinematographers Direct! In addition, Bacchus holds monthly screenings at a cinema in Toronto called “Canadian Cinema in Revue,” showcasing great Canadian short films, features and Canadian filmmakers. Bacchus, a new member of Art+Culture, will be contributing excerpts of reviews from Daily Film Dose. You can check out the site at http://www.dailyfilmdose.com/
How long have you been doing what you do?
I’ve been blogging for almost three years, but I’ve been working in the film industry for almost 10 years
You write a post every single day! That’s quite prolific. How do you do it? Do you have a system or routine of any sort?
I kind of have a routine. I don’t always watch a film every day, but over the course of the week, I’ll definitely watch at least 7 films. I usually draft up my review the day before, and polish it off and post it the next morning. Lately I’ve had help from my ‘guest contributors’, so I’m only personally reviewing about 6 films a week – still a lot though.
How do you decide what you review?
I like to think of my choices as a bit of randomness you would get from pressing ‘shuffle’ on your iPOD. Sometimes its what I watch in the theatre – ie Inglourious Basterds, sometimes it’s an old classic I catch on TV. Part of the fun is this randomness and surprise of seeing what’s coming up each day.
Do you watch every film that you review, and do you watch it all the way through? If not, how do you decide when you’ve had enough?
Yes, I definitely watch everything I review – usually between a day and week from after I see it. Even if it’s an old film, it’s best to write about them right after I watch them.
I sometimes turn a film off while I’m watching. If it’s really boring me, than I won’t waste my time and switch over to something else. I never leave a film in the theatre though, unless it’s a film festival when there’s usually 2 or 3 other films I could be seeing.
Are there films you won’t see or won’t write about? Why?
Of course, I have personal preferences, but I’ll watch and write about anything. For example, I watched and reviewed The Jonas Bros 3-D movie. It wasn’t great, but sometimes it’s important to watch these movies to know exactly why films succeed and why they don’t and what the young people are watching, however tedious.
You’re a writer and filmmaker both. Do you find it difficult to move between these things?
So far, I haven’t found it difficult, although it’s very busy. All of my writing is done, ‘on the side’ outside of the work I do as a film industry professional. By day, I work for the Canadian Film Centre – an advance training institution which is like AFI or BFI of Canada.
How many blogs do you keep?
I have two blogs – Daily Film Dose (www.dailyfilmdose.com) and Canadian Film Dose (www.canadianfilmdose.com). The Canadian site is for the Canadian films I discuss. I started that one after DFD because I found there were very little fan-based sites devoted to Canadian film.
I also write weekly reviews for a Canadian entertainment magazine called Exclaim! (www.exclaim.ca)
What kinds of films do you make?
At my work at the Canadian Film Centre, I help make low budget feature films for emerging filmmakers. On my own, I’ve made a number of shorts as producer and director. Only shorts so far, but of course, with a few feature films at various stages of development.
What are you currently working on?
In addition to what I’ve mentioned above, I’m at the script stage of a low budget feature idea, which I hope to shoot (as producer) next year. Also, ongoing is a series of monthly screenings of great Canadian films which I host at a local rep theatre in Toronto, called Canadian Cinema in Revue – www.revuecinema.ca.
I recently shot a pilot episode of a film appreciation talk show with one of my DFD contributors, Greg Klymkiw. We’re editing it right now, and whether it does or doesn’t get picked up, it’ll become a web-program/video podcast.
What was the last great film that you’ve seen? Favourite Canadian film of all time?
I actually think Inglourious Basterds is a great film – Tarantino’s best film since Pulp Fiction. Recently I rewatched Neil La Bute’s In the Company of Men, which is still amazing. Same goes with Charles Vidor’s classic noir Gilda, which I saw for the first time last month.
My favourite Canadian film is, ummm several. Atom Egoyan’s The Sweet Hereafter is great. Same with Michael Dowse’s It’s All Gone Pete Tong. Add to that list: Dead Ringers, The Barbarian Invasions, and Cube.