Best Laid Plans + Wandel’s

February 27, 2014 | By

Meet Angus. See him fully clothed, and at night, doing a reverse-Keitel.

Earlier this month, the CBC’s adaptation of Terry Fallis‘ novel Best Laid Plans [BLP] finished its run, and with the final episode pretty much setting up a possible Season 2, it makes sense to offer up a review of this short but sweet  six episode show which, like the British model, features lean storylines and very little fat.

No, the show isn’t on video yet – one assumes it may emerge on disc, or perhaps as a two-season set after possible (inevitable?) Season 2 ends its run – but this isn’t the first time I’ve reviewed an orphan show.

Direct TV’s Rogue was covered way back in June of 2013, although a DVD release is finally coming March 11, just in time for the debut of Season 2. (Why there’s no Blu-ray is a mystery; you really want to enjoy all that raunchy behaviour and violence in HD. Trust me.)

A colleague has noted a number of local Ottawa actors appeared in BLP, and the show makes full use of many locations that show off the beauty of the nation’s capital. Several scenes are set in real locations (like the University of Ottawa, the ByTown Cinema), and the producers make a concerted effort to bring out the colours of Ottawa and Gatineau region during what looks like late summer / early fall on prime sunny days, and it certainly makes me want to head back for another spring or summertime break.

I usually try and visit family friends at least once a year, but 2013 was fubar’d by that [expletive] thing known as frozen shoulder (of which I had its plural variant). During my last trip in 2012, I shot footage for two quick & fun shorts, of which the first – footage of a large and meticulously arranged garden – was edited into a rough cut.

I’ve taken the footage and re-cut it into a short extract with music, kind of as a teaser for the colour that’s typical of what populates the garden of Fred and Charlotte. For lack of a better title, I’m just calling it Wandel’s. I know zero about plant varieties, but I like filming flowers and foliage because of the remarkable textures and colours.



So dreamy & creamy, you want to eat it with a spoon, right?


Quick historical note: Fred’s former company, the still-active Capital Landscaping, previously owned & operated by a trio of partners, is responsible for most of the massive trees, foliage, gardens, and landscaping done during the sixties through the 2000’s in Ottawa, Kanata, and Gatineau. If you see a big tree in a commercial, older residential, or governmental location, it’s likely the company’s early handiwork.

The short extract – for now, available only on Vimeo due to format issues with YouTube – is a sampling of Fred’s genius for growing the exotic & the supposedly impossible in a garden he and Charlotte have curated for decades. The garden was shot in HD, but my ideal plan is to film their 2014 foliage using a three-tube camera. I just need to get a tripod capable of holding one of these ENG monsters.

Coming right up before gets its WordPress overhaul this weekend: reviews of Robert Redford in The Way We Were (Twilight Time) and All is Lost (eOne).





Mark R. Hasan, Editor ( Main Site / Mobile Site )

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Category: EDITOR'S BLOG, FILM REVIEWS, Vimeo channel

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