It is with mixed emotions that I announce the first signs of Fall: the Toronto International Film Festival is days away. It’s always sad to say goodbye to summer, but TIFF is my favorite season in Toronto. The city is buzzing with excitement, Torontonians are forced to be friendly due to the infiltration of visitors who want to talk about all of the incredible films they are trying to digest, and the chaos of summer shows signs of slowing down. It’s all good.
TIFF 2013 runs this year from September 5th – 15th. If you haven’t purchased a package of tickets, then you should know that the public on sale date is Sunday, September 1st at 9:00 a.m. As always, I suggest when you make a list of films you’d like to see and that you double check availability on Saturday so not to waste precious time trying to get tickets to a sold out movie.
Last year TIFF introduced a revamped website which has made getting tickets a whole lot less painful and the TIFF smartphone app now allows you to see the schedule, watch trailers and buy single tickets (this is HUGE!). One major change I’ve noticed is that Cineplex Cinema at Yonge & Dundas is no longer being used a venue, rather all 18 theatres in Scotiabank will be screening TIFF films. This will make it faster to shuffle between theatres and screening times (the main venues are now Scotiabank at RIchmond & John and the TIFF Bell Lightbox at King W. & John).
Once again I warn you that my choice of films lean towards dark and I tend to avoid the major gala screenings with all their red carpets and glam. I find the smaller screenings to be more intimate and usually feature a question and answer period with the visiting filmmakers, which is my favorite part. I’ve scoured the hype that has come from the recent major film festivals (Cannes, Sundance, Berlinale, etc) to come up with a shortlist of films that is sure to excite you, entertain you, challenge you and hopefully help you see life through a new lens.
Enemy (Canadian Director Denis Villeneuve (Incendies, a TIFF favorite of mine) returns with an adaptation of the novel The Double from Nobel Prize-winning author Jose Saramago about a glum history professor in search of his doppelganger. Shot in Toronto and starring Jake Gyllenhaal, Mélanie Laurent (Inglourious Basterds) and Sarah Gadon (Cosmopolis).)
Gloria (Paulina García won the Silver Bear at the Berlin Film Festival for her performance as a vivacious, middle-aged divorcée who finds what may be her last chance for love while grooving on the dance floor of the local singles club.) Continue reading