Today we received this very excited email from our member Glenn Fox who will be attending the Toronto International Film Festival(TIFF) this year. Glenn will be acting as a de facto Hot Splice reporter this year, with this preview and a promise of a post-festival report as well. Here’s Glenn’s Hot Splice exclusive preview:
In about a week I’ll be departing Seattle for the ten day Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF). Definitely the giant of the fall North American film festivals, TIFF stands apart and above the Telluride Film Festival and the New York Film Festival. Telluride is short – four days of intense movie-going over Labor Day weekend with lots of celebrities and directors and famous guests on hand in the tiny resort town in the Colorado mountains. Telluride is so exclusive they don’t announce their program until you’re already there for the festival. The New York Film Festival is programmed by a cast of top-notch film critics, like J. Hoberman, Dennis Lim and Melissa Anderson. They limited their picks to a very exclusive 29 movies this year. The NYFF can be trusted for quality programming. TIFF, which happens between Telluride and New York has 273 features and 64 shorts this year from 64 countries. While you’re sure to see a few clunkers, the Toronto program is packed with exciting world and North American premieres, with many of the Cannes films first appearing in North America at Toronto.
Last year my three favorite films at Toronto included two films that will be playing at NWFF this fall. Be sure to see Claire Denis’ sublime 35 Shots of Rum starting November 6 and Lisandro Alonso’s wonderfully mediative and poetic Liverpool starting November 13. I’ve seen all of Mr. Alonso’s feature films (all making their Seattle debuts at NWFF this November), either at TIFF or the Vancouver International Film Festival and he is an incredible filmmaker – currently one of the world’s greatest. But last year at TIFF, Liverpool just blew me away.
So last year’s TIFF was a great one. Last year I saw these directors do a Q & A after their film at the festival: Cliare Denis, Lisandro Alonso, Olivier Assayas, the Dardenne brothers, Terrence Davies, Amos Gitai, Ari Folman, Kelly Reichardt, Ryan Fleck & Anna Boden, Ramin Bahrani and many more. This year could be just as rich.
Last year’s Toronto Festival also included these films that made their way to NWFF over the past year: Hunger, Medicine for Melancholy, Tony Manero, 24 City, Birdsong, Treeless Mountain, Wendy and Lucy, Harvard Beats Yale 29-29, Examined Life and Goodbye, Solo.
Some of the films I’m looking forward to seeing this year:
White Material (Claire Denis)
Antichrist (Lars von Trier)
The White Ribbon (Michael Haneke)
A Prophet (Jacques Audiard)
Police, Adjective (Corneliu Porumboiu)
Like You Know It All (Hong Sang-soo)
Enter the Void (Gaspar Noe)
Le Refuge (Francois Ozon)
Hadewijch (Bruno Dumont)
Airdoll (Hirokazu Kore-eda)
Trash Humpers (Harmony Korine)
Wild Grass (Alain Resnais)
Soul Kitchen (Fatih Akin)
Broken Embraces (Pedro Almadovar)
Life During Wartime (Todd Solondz)
Eccentriciities of a Blond Hair Girl (Manoel de Oliveira)
Vincere (Marco Bellocchio)
Vision (Margarethe von Trotta)
Nymph (Pan-ek Ratanaruang)
Mr. Nobody (Jaco Van Dormael)
Some of the directors with new films in the avant-garde Wavelength’s program:
Jean-Luc Godard, Jean-Marie Straub, Apichatpong Weerasethakul, Michael Snow, Harun Farocki, Ben Russell, and Lisandro Alonso (with a new one minute short).
Toronto, of course, is also famous for their celebrity filled red carpets. These are just some of the Hollywood-ish premieres this year at TIFF:
The Men Who Stare at Goats starring George Clooney, Ewan McGregor and Jeff Bridges
Chloe starring Julianne Moore and Liam Neeson and directed by Atom Egoyan
The Young Victoria starring Emily Blunt
A Serious Man – Joel & Ethan Coen
Up in the Air – Jason Reitman’s new film starring George Clooney
Capitalism: A Love Story – Michael Moore’s new documentary
The Informant! – Steven Soderbergh’s film starring Matt Damon
The Invention of Lying – directed by Ricky Gervais & Matthew Robinson and starring Gervais
Whip It – Drew Barrymore directing Ellen Page
The Road – starring ViggoMortensen in John Hillcoat’s film
Jennifer’s Body – starring Megan Fox (no relation)
Some of the artist/directors that have shows in art galleries across the city as part of the festival’s Future Projections program “moving images beyond the cinema”: Mark Lewis, Candice Breitz, Christopher Doyle (cinematographer), Don McKellar (actor-writer-director) and Apichatpong Weerasethakul.
Also part of the Future Projections program is Marco Brambilla’s single-channel installation Civilization which will be projected in a loop whenever it’s dark onto the side of the Toronto Film Festival’s still being completed, but soon to be new home, Bell Lightbox. You can watch Civilization here
All in all, TIFF should be a great way to kick off the fall movie season. Reports (or least one report) to follow.