Toisto.net

Toisto.net

Toisto is the only pop culture media in Finland which focuses on English-language audiences in the Nordics. I review theatrical and streaming premieres, cover festivals worldwide, and occasionally write about games. I also create video essays on Youtube on a variety of topics. Welcome aboard!
  • Blogit

    The Banshees of Inisherin

    A banshee is a figure in Irish folklore that heralds the death of a family member. They warn others by wailing and shrieking. To hear one is to know that something ominous is coming. In Martin McDonagh's masterful The Banshees of Inisherin, that wail is internal. It is the release that none of the men can articulate, even when all it takes is to let go. Meanwhile, across the bay, the Irish Civil War rages on. By now, it's almost a distraction to those on the island – a daily bit of news. Most can't comprehend why they're still going at it; others don't care. The war exists in the distant roar of cannon fire – a keening for the entire country. On the shore

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    The Last of Us (HBO)

    Set in a post-apocalyptic world, where a fungal plague has wiped out most of humanity, The Last of Us is one of the most beloved stories in modern gaming. A mix of survival horror and road trip, it's an exploration of familial bonds, generational trauma, survivor's guilt, and forgiveness. None of these are particularly unique topics, not even for gaming, but in the hands of directors Bruce Straley and Neil Druckmann, The Last of Us tapped into something unique for an audience hungry for a change. In the game, players controlled Joel, a broken and violent man sent to transport human cargo, Ellie, across the country. Over time, after much misery and horror, the two bond over their sh

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    Glass Onion

    I'm a big fan of Rian Johnson. You don't have to be. Glass Onion, like Knives Out before it, is a crowd-pleaser in a way that overcomes any and all barriers. Don't like murder mysteries? No worries, Glass Onion is one of the funniest films of the year. Not a fan of deconstructive meta-commentary? Not a problem, it's also one of the cleverest thrillers since its predecessor. Whatever hurdle you throw at Johnson's impeccable script or pitch-perfect cast, they clear it effortlessly. Whether you're coming in as a fan or with fresh eyes, Glass Onion is like an accommodating party host. The most important thing is that you're having a good time. Set an unknown ti

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    Glass Onion Interviews: Daniel Craig & Rian Johnson

    In the final part of my interviews for Glass Onion, I spoke with Daniel Craig and Rian Johnson about crafting mysteries, Southern accents, and grounding the madness with the real world. Look out for my review of Glass Onion soon and check out the film on Netflix Nordic starting December 23rd. Thank you both for the film, this was a lot of fun. RJ: Thank you! We had a good time making it. DC: It doesn’t always translate, having fun on set, but when you’ve got a great script, it seems to work out. Daniel, did you have or want more input on things this time around in the film? DC: No more than the first one. The great and liberating thing about these films is that Rian writes and directs, Ram B

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    Glass Onion Interviews: Janelle Monae & Edward Norton

    Janelle Monae and Edward Norton visited the London Film Festival to promote Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery, the new film from Rian Johnson, premiering on Netflix on December 23rd. I got a chance to speak with them briefly about making the film as PR reps flocked around us, dutifully monitoring that no spoilers slipped through the cracks a few months before the premiere. This interview is edited and condensed for clarity. Janelle, your character in the film has multiple outfits that serve almost as suits of armor for her. How was it dressing up for the movie? Did it help with finding the character? Monae: It was a lot of fun. She [my character] is a tech entrepreneur who clearly is very sh

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    Avatar: The Way of Water

    Let's start with the good news. The Way of Water looks fantastic. It's a technical marvel, showcasing what 13 years, endless amounts of money, and no care about the human cost of overtime crunch can accomplish. It's a reminder that good 3D can look amazing and immersive. Well, mostly. But we'll get to that later. Everything else about James Cameron's long-awaited return to Pandora is disappointing. At its core, The Way of Water is a vanity project in search of an editor. Anyone to just say no. It's both bloated and empty all at once. The runtime is easily an hour too long and in serious need of a script rewrite or three. The plot, such as it is, straddles betwee

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    Spiral

    (I originally reviewed Spiral for Night Visions Maximum Halloween 3022. Portions of that review carry over here.) There is an anxious desperation that permeates Kurtis David Harder’s haunting thriller, but not because of demons or anything supernatural. Instead, it taps into something more primal and sinister; white, suburban communities. The kind of places where minds and hearts are more closed-off than the houses. Set in an undefined time and place, Spiral follows a same-sex couple who move to a small town somewhere out in the boondocks in search of a more quiet life. Where they are or where they’re coming from isn’t mentioned. The horrific part of it all is that it wouldn’t make a differe

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    LFF 2022: Guillermo Del Toro’s Pinocchio

    It's always a gamble, naming something after yourself. The act implies ownership. Something so total, it takes its place as the definitive telling of something in popular culture. As the name suggests, this is Guillermo Del Toro's film, and it is the definitive take on Pinocchio. Set in Fascist Italy, as Mussolini's thugs hold the country under their boot. A cheerful artisan, Geppetto, lives far away from the war with his son, happy to ignore the horror casually spreading towards their home. One night, a rogue air raid strikes, killing Geppetto's child. Inconsolable, he takes to drink, and seasons pass. Then, fueled by rage, desperation, and grief, Geppetto carves a woode

  • Blogit

    Guillermo Del Toro’s Pinocchio

    It's always a gamble, naming something after yourself. The act implies ownership. Something so total, it takes its place as the definitive telling of something in popular culture. As the name suggests, this is Guillermo Del Toro's film, and it is the definitive take on Pinocchio. Set in Fascist Italy, as Mussolini's thugs hold the country under their boot. A cheerful artisan, Geppetto, lives far away from the war with his son, happy to ignore the horror casually spreading towards their home. One night, a rogue air raid strikes, killing Geppetto's child. Inconsolable, he takes to drink, and seasons pass. Then, fueled by rage, desperation, and grief, Geppetto carves a woode

  • Blogit

    Willow (2022)

    Willow is a sequel to Willow, but it rarely feels like it needs to be one. At its best, Willow is a high-fantasy family show that works perfectly well as its own thing. The times it sags are when it feels beholden to a legacy few remember. There's a sense that, like its protagonists, the series places more emphasis on its own assumed expectations, rather than what others really want from it. The original, directed by Ron Howard, was a perfectly serviceable and fun adventure film that didn't need an expanded universe. It wasn't hugely original, but it didn't need to be, either. Instead, it was charming and easily likable, carried by winning performances from Warwick Davis

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