THEO FLEURY: PLAYING WITH FIRE
(Matt Embry, Larry Day, Canada). 91 minutes. Subtitled. Rating: Theo Fleury proves a fascinating but problematic subject. Booze and drugs sank the career of the brilliant hockey star, who battled major anger issues. He later came out as a sexual abuse victim of his coach Graham James, which began to explain his personal difficulties.
Problem is, Matt Embry and Larry Day let Fleury set the doc’s agenda. The film takes a journey to the major sites in Fleury’s life – his homes, the arenas where he played, the streets where he scored coke. Interviews with family members, ex- girlfriends and hockey coaches complete the portrait.
Buried in there is an indictment of the hockey establishment, but you have to dig for it. And there are way too many shots of Fleury on the highway.
Regardless, he’s a unique character, hopelessly conflicted about his role as a much- publicized survivor. And by no means has he, as they say in AA, made amends. But he’s a charismatic character. May 4, 9: 30 pm, TIFF Bell Lightbox 1; May 5, 1:15 pm, Isabel Bader Theatre; May 6, 6: 30 pm, Cumberland 3.