So, which movie will emerge from the Toronto International Film Festival this year as an Oscar frontrunner? Last year it was The King’s Speech, and previous seasons have launched Slumdog Millionaire, Precious, and American Beauty to Oscar glory. It is a tradition that goes all the way back to Toronto favorites Chariots of Fire and The Big Chill from the festival’s early years.
It is always fun when the Toronto International Film Festival turns into the George and Brad show. Professional film critics cover TIFF primarily for the movies, but if you think we are snobbishly above stargazing, think again. This will be my 24th trip to the festival and I’m still not cynical about enjoying movies and the stars that make them.
George Clooney will be across the border to promote the film he directs and stars in with Ryan Gosling, The Ides of March, a political drama about a presidential primary. The film co-stars Paul Giamatti and Philip Seymour Hoffman. Clooney will also be supporting a second festival flick, Alexander Payne’s film The Descendants. Payne is best known for Election and Sideways.
Brad Pitt will be in Toronto to help sell Moneyball, directed by Bennett Miller, based on the book about Billy Beane, the general manager of the Oakland Athletics, who changed the way baseball players are evaluated when he couldn’t afford stars.
The opening night TIFF offering is From the Sky Down, a documentary about the band U2 directed by Academy-Award-winning director Davis Guggenheim (An Inconvenient Truth, Waiting For Superman). It is the first time in the history of the festival that the opening night film is a documentary.
Other films announced include A Dangerous Method, from Canada’s national treasure, David Cronenberg. It is a tale about the lives of Carl Jung, Sigmund Freud and the woman that comes between them, Sabina Spielrein. The film stars Michael Fassbender, Viggo Mortensen and Keira Knightly.
Aussie veteran Bruce Beresford, one of the best directors to emerge from Australia’s “New Wave” of the 1970s and ’80s with Don’s Party and Breaker Morant, brings his latest, Peace, Love and Misunderstanding, to Toronto. Jane Fonda, Catherine Keener and Chase Crawford star in this comedy drama about an uptight New York lawyer who takes her two teenagers to her hippie mother’s farmhouse for a family vacation. Another Aussie from the New Wave era, Fred Schepisi (The Chant of Jimmy Blacksmith, Roxanne, Iceman) arrives with Eye of the Storm, a family drama starring Charlotte Rampling, Geoffrey Rush and Judy Davis.
Inspired by personal experience, 50/50, from director Jonathan Levine, is a dramedy about what happens when two best buds have to deal with cancer. Joseph Gordon-Levitt is the one with the “50/50” chance of survival, and Seth Rogen is the guy trying to keep things upbeat.
Gerald Butler stars in Machine Gun Preacher, based on a true story, about a former drug-dealing criminal who finds a new calling as the savior of hundreds of kidnapped and orphan children. The film is directed by Marc Forster (Monster’s Ball).
Agnieszka Holland (Europa, Europa) directs In Darkness, about the true story of Leopold Socha, a sewer worker and petty thief in Nazi-occupied Poland who finds a group of Jews hiding in the sewers and agrees to hide them for a price.
Here is a list of my 10 favorite films from the Toronto Film Fest...
After five days and 18 movies viewed at the 2012 Toronto International Film Festival, I’ve got a few favorites and a little Oscar buzz. David O. Russell, writer-director of Three Kings and more recently, The Fighter, introduced his latest, Silver Linings Playbook.
The Screening Room at Resorts has been home to the show Believe — Divas in a Man’s World since July, but it reverts back to its namesake when the venue once again hosts the Atlantic City Cinefest presented by the Downbeach Film Festival Oct. 14-16.
Brad Pitt: "As a kid I loved 'The Bad News Bears. I loved 'North Dallas Forty' with Nick Nolte. That was the first R-rated movie I saw so it has a special place. Sports films work on some level at overcoming adversity."
When Brad Pitt and George Clooney are in Hollywood North to promote movies, the media blitz hits the frenzy button and rarely dies down. And so it was on the opening weekend of the Toronto International Film Festival with Pitt in town to promote the baseball movie Moneyball, and Clooney ...
While 'The King’s Speech' was my only 3.5-star movie from TIFF, there were a lot of three and 2.5-star movies, and very few total stiffs. So while the highs weren’t as high, there weren’t many low points either.
This is exactly why I spend my working vacation every year at the Toronto International Film Festival. The 35th TIFF takes place this year from Sept. 9-19. This will be my 23rd trip to cover the global cinematic feast. The festival has grown from an understated, unpretentious celebration of emerging filmmakers, to a film festival that officially launches the Oscar buzz season
In the final analysis, it is the quality of the movies that count the most during the annual Toronto Film Festival, but it is the stars who come to tout their movies that generate all the fan worship and celebrity hunting. This year’s festival has been top heavy with major stars, as early arrivals included Matt Damon, George Clooney, Oprah Winfrey (for a film she produced), and Drew Barrymore, for her directorial debut.
for movie showtimes, click here for movie capsules, click here TORONTO, ONTARIO--My final movie at the 32nd Toronto International Film Festival was the best of the fest, in both content and exec...
Toronto, Ont. -- I'm on stakeout at the Toronto International Film Festival. My mission: to find movies that will make a big splash once they arrive stateside, and to uncover cinematic gems that deserve to find an audience. It is always important to start out with a positive note. Kiss Kiss Bang Bang jump-started my Toronto experience nicely. Written and directed by Shane Black, the Hollywood veteran who wrote Lethal Weapon, this sharply observed piece of detective pulp fiction set in Hollywood, features excellent performances by Robert Downey, Jr., and Val Kilmer. The black comedy features a particularly entertaining Kilmer as gay Perry, a private detective who flaunts his sexual orientation because he is tough enough to back it up. Imagine Me and You is, at first glance, a conventional British romantic comedy with that Four Weddings and a Funeral vibe. However, the twist is that at her wedding, Rachel (Piper Perabo), glances across the aisle and locks eyes with Luce (Lena Headly), the woman doing the flowers for her nuptials. Rachel is stuck with a feeling that won't go away, a feeling that will put her family in a tizzy. Brooklyn Lobster is a sweet slice of life comedy starring Danny Aiello...