A WINTER TALE Directed by Frances-Anne Solomon. 102 minutes. Opens Feb. 29 (Friday). Rating: NN
A Winter Tale was shot on a shoestring budget with the very best of intentions. The film wants very much to be a deeply relevant, ripped-from-the-headlines drama about the impact of handgun violence in drug-ravaged Parkdale, following the efforts of a concerned citizen (Peter Williams) to establish a support group for black men who don't want to feel like victims any longer.
But Solomon's movie-of-the-week script (co-written with Michele Lonsdale-Smith) quickly splinters into a series of mawkish, cookie-cutter subplots – a mother and son divided by a previous shooting; a "good" kid lured into the world of the drug runner; a man so obsessed with healing his community that he can't see that his marriage is falling apart – and develops each one along only the most obvious dramatic lines.
It'll probably work better as a community-centre motivational tool: Stay clear of guns and drugs, kids, or you'll be forced to watch more movies like this.