Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Thank you TIFF

I would like to thank the Toronto International Film Festival for linking to my blog as featured in their new TIFF Blogs section. I would also like to welcome any new visitors who may have stumbled over here from the festival website. I hope you enjoy what you read, and feel free to leave any comments concerning my posts or film festival experiences.

Yesterday, the festival announced the inclusion of at least 26 more titles to their lineup. Most notable is David Cronenberg’s EASTERN PROMISES, which is receiving the gala treatment and reunites him with A HISTORY OF VIOLENCE’s Viggo Mortensen. In EASTERN PROMISES, Mortensen plays Nikolai, a Russian gangster whose life is thrown into turmoil by an encounter with an innocent midwife which leads him into “a harrowing chain of murder, deceit, and retribution”.

It’s nice to see Cronenberg taking his talent of packaging the allegory and substance of his earlier horror films and applying them in a more universal context. He’s moved far from his fascination with biological / sexual horror of the body (see SHIVERS, the BROOD, and RABID), to the horrors of reality, which he applies so successfully in 2005’s A HISTORY OF VIOLENCE. HISTORY was the rare film that exposes violence through its roots, its offspring and its consequences without stooping to a showcase of blood and fireworks. Granted it contained its brutal moments, but they are not without the emotional and contextual impact necessary for the scenes. I have high hopes for this film, and even though its currently slated for a U.S. release at the same time as its festival premiere, I still hope to catch it at the festival. Fingers crossed for a non-gala Q+A.

Other highlights are:
L'ÂGE DES TÉNÈBRES by Denys Arcand, which is also being shown as a Gala.
HERE IS WHAT IS – A look at the inner workings of music production with appearances by U2 and Brian Eno.
THEY WAIT - A ghost story inspired by true events.
WEIRDSVILLE – An overdose leads a group to a satanic cult performing a sacrificial ritual.
MY WINNIPEG – Guy Maddin’s newest experiment with live narration from the director.
THE WILD HORSE REDEMPTION – A look at how a prison in the Colorado Rocky Mountains handles prisoner rehabilitation in a most unique fashion.

But who am I kidding? They all sound great. So head on over to the TIFF website to read about all 32 titles.

1 comment:

richard said...

who plays the midwife in eastern promises?

oscar-nominee naomi watts, not somebody unknown or lesser known than viggo mortensen. to say the least, one who deserves to be named.