Abraham Lincoln

RVIFF Reviews: Love and Screenwriting, Miraculous Healing, and Teen Girl Assassin Roommate Troubles

September 12th, 2022 | Robin


A Ken and Robin Consume Media Special Feature


At the end of last year’s Toronto International Film Festival, my wife Valerie and I decided to break up with it, after decades of attendance. We have replaced it with RVIFF, the Robin and Valerie International Film Festival. It’s the festival you can play along with at home, with a curated roster of streaming titles I’m excited to see. Daily capsule reviews roll out throughout the festival, with a complete list in order of preference dropping a day or two afterwards. Review ratings are out of 5.


Holy Emy (Greece, Araceli Lemos, 2021, 4) As she manifests miraculous healing abilities, a young woman (Abigael Loma) in Ahens’ Filipino community faces a choice between her devout sister and the ex-employer  who exploited her mother’s similar powers. Magic realist drama heightened by a strong sense for imagery.

Eyimofe (This is My Desire) (Nigeria, Arie Esiri & Chuko Esiri, 2020, 4) A Lagos mechanic and hairdresser a degree of separation from one another struggle to raise money needed to emigrate. Energetic slice of life drama of life in a touch city where every interaction by necessity devolves into a transaction.

Bergman Island (France, Mia Hansen-Løve, 2021, 4) Undertaking a residency on Ingmar Bergman’s retreat at Faroe, a filmmaker (Vicky Krieps) struggles with a script as her more celebrated, prolific husband (Tim Roth) breezes through his; she describes to him its rekindled affair at a wedding on Faroe, casting it with Mia Wasikowksa and Anders Danielsen Lie. Serenely beautiful puzzle film about the parallel mysteries of love and the creative process.

Baby Assassins (Japan, Yugo Sakamoto, 2021, 3.5) Two teen girl killers, one outgoing, the other withdrawn, have trouble meshing when the oddly bureaucratic enterprise they work for requires them to live together and get part-time jobs. Offbeat cult comedy bookended by fun fight sequences.



If you enjoy this special text feature of the Ken and Robin Talk About Stuff podcast and don’t already support our Patreon, consider tossing a few bucks in the tip jar. Or check out my book on action films and their roleplaying applications, Blowing Up the Movies. Or the roleplaying game inspired by the Hong Kong films I first encountered at TIFF, Feng Shui 2.

Due to moderate demand, the RVIFF shirts I made for the two of us are now available in the Ken and Robin merch store.

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