FIN STREAM REVIEW: There’s no doc like This Place, anyplace

There are more serious documentaries in FIN Stream this year, and many that are more fun also.

But There’s No Place Like This Place, Anyplace captured my attention from the opening frame, and didn’t let go.

This meditation on the transformation and gentrification of the Toronto city block that contained bargain store Honest Ed’s is wonderfully inventive and interesting.

Whether director Lulu Wei is interviewing residents, community members, Ed himself, or the development company who bought it, we are given a pretty thorough cross-section of ideas an opinions.

Perhaps the best part of This Place, Anyplace is that everyone gets a chance to say their piece. It’s neither a doc about the community against the greedy developer, nor is it the story of the developer trying to please the community.

The issue is more intricate, and politics, affordable housing, gentrification, cultural history, and even immigration are all touched on here. Honest Ed’s block is a microcosm for the unsustainable growth in Toronto, and to see it handled so delicately is an unbelievable achievement.

4/5 Stars

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