Thursday, September 02, 2004

Picking the Movies

Well, my friend and I just finished selecting all the movies for this year's festival. We plowed through all 416 pages of the guide and came up with my top 62 movies, and his top 100. From that, we further whittled it down to our common top 20. Then we took our common top 10 and tried to actually schedule them. There were a couple of conflicts, with those movies coming out of the top 10, to be replaced by others from our top 20.

Then, I had another pass for which we scheduled an additional 3 movies, keeping the rest to pick up movies on the fly during the festival.

At any rate, we ended up with 13 movies. Submitted 5 this afternoon, 5 this evening, and the remaining 3 tomorrow before the deadline. So far we've got 5 movies in a box in the 10's, 5 in a box in the 20's, and we'll see where the remaining 3 end up. We're still undecided as to whether or not distributing our choices like this is a good idea given the way the draw works. Guess we'll find out soon enough!

Our top movies ended up being, in no particular order:

Lapsia Ja Aikuisia (Producing Adults), a drama from Finland and Sweden about a couple coming to terms with differences in their marriage over whether or not to have children.

Mondovino, a documentary from the US about wine making.

Astronautas (Astronauts), a Spanish comedy about a recovering drug addict.

Wilby Wonderful, the quintessential Canadian film directed by Daniel McIvor and starring the usual who's who of Canadian cinema, including Callum Keith Rennie, Rebecca Jenkins, Sandra Oh, Paul Gross, and Maury Chaykin.

10e Chambre, instants d'audiences (The 10th District Court, Moments of Trials), a French documentary that looks inside a single courtroom and 12 cases that pass through it.

L'Equipier (The Light), a French drama set in the 60's, about a man who comes to a small town to become its new lighthouse keeper.

Our Own (Svoi), a Russian drama set in WWII, about three Russian soldiers who escape imprisonment by the Germans.

Kohi Jikou (Cafe Lumiere), about a single, pregnant woman in Japan, living a secluded life amongst the hustle and bustle of the city.

Quill, a Japanese drama about a seeing eye dog, picked mainly because I just couldn't resist the picture in the festival guide of an incredibly cute Labrador retriever puppy. :-)

Arsene Lupin, about a celebrated French jewel thief (who has also been immortalized in Japanese anime), co-starring Kristin Scott Thomas.

Clean, a drama about a mother (Maggie Cheung) trying to clean herself up to win back custody of her son from his grandparents (Nick Nolte and Martha Henry). Apparently partially filmed in Hamilton!

House of Flying Daggers, by the same director as the recently released (at least in North America) Hero (minus Jet Li).

Der Neunte Tag (The Ninth Day), a German drama set in WWII about a Catholic priest who has only nine days to convince a bishop to stop ringing his church bells in defiance of the German occupiers.


My experiences at the Toronto International Film Festival. Note this blog is not affiliated with the Toronto International Film Festival Group or the festival itself.
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