Another year, another great festival experience. TIFF 2013 has been filled with beautiful films and amazing memories, ones we are not going to forget anytime soon.The festival brought to the city not just amazing productions but film enthusiasts a like to share in the experience.
While there were a ton of great films, there were individual films that really resonated with each member of our team. As such, we have compiled our Team Picks!
Talia’s Pick: Philomena
The film Philomena contains moments of gentle humour amidst devastation, and ultimately offers an uplifting conclusion. I was fortunate enough to view this film at a public screening where the audience continually laughed, gasped, and cried throughout; such an emotional experience is best shared with other like-minded individuals who are able to react along with you. Stellar performances from two of the greatest actors of our time, Steve Coogan and Dame Judi Dench, create characters that remain in the heart and mind long after the film has reached its conclusion. Philomena is one of those movies that remind enthusiasts why we love the art form: it can cause us to feel real emotion. I cannot recommend Philomena more strongly, as a truly beautiful piece of film.
Adnan’s Pick: McCanick
McCanick brings back old school grit and roughness to the world of action packed, head spinning thrillers. Sitting back and watching Eugene ‘Mack’ McCanick’s world simply flip on itself within the span of a day makes you cling on to your seat for dear life. Josh Waller removes all the unnecessary flaff in action thrillers these days and simply points the camera to the main character, creating what is quintessentially a perfect character study. David Morse is simply the veteran that he is, brilliant at every turn. The late Cory Monteith puts on a performance that not only is different from his usual work, but one that really shows you the skilled actor that he was. McCanick is a beautifully crafted film that just delivers from start to finish. You can’t expect more than that.
Ilse’s Pick: We Are The Best!
If you didn’t watch Lukas Moodysson’s We Are The Best! during this festival (and that’s the majority of you) you seriously missed out. The film was lighthearted yet insightful and surprisingly hilarious. Mira Barkhammar, Mira Grosin, and Liv LeMoyne are amazing as Bobo, Klara and Hedvig, three girls who refuse to conform to what society tells them, insist on punk not being dead, and decide to form a band even though they don’t know how to play any instruments. I saw a bit of myself in each of these girls, and they reminded me of a time when things were easier. The film obviously makes a serious note of gender norms, bullying, and other issues, but it never becomes patronizing. This is one of those films that remind you that movies can be uncomplicated and simple, but stay incredibly magical.
Adriana’s Pick: The Double
One of my favourites at TIFF 2013 is Richard Ayoade’s The Double. An adaptation of a Dostoyevsky novella about a man whose life is taken over by his doppelgänger, the film is dark, philosophical and dystopian. Ayoade’s sharp and cynical sense of humour make the film laugh out loud funny but melancholic and profound all at once. Jesse Eisenberg kills it playing two characters, both identical yet still so distinctly their own person. Richard Ayoade sets this film in its own unique world that exists only for itself. Themes of existence, loneliness and death are heavily played upon, making the film thought-provoking and deep. Ayoade is a true talent that has already distinguished himself as a director with only just two films under his belt. The Double is a film that will keep you questioning deep philosophical questions but in a fun and darkly humorous way. It is pure cinematic entertainment that also gets you thinking.
Photo Credits: Toronto International Film Festival