Force Majeure Movie

Force Majeure

The absurdity of familial archetypes are underscored to hilarious effect in Ruben Östlund's provocative new film. Read More
10,000 KM Movie

10,000 KM

In Carlos Marques-Marcet’s debut feature 10,000 KM, the title refers to the distance which now separates a couple after a job opportunity forces them to face the challenges of dating remotely. Marques-Marcet, who previously edited the equally subtle relationship film It Felt Like Love, proves that long distance relationships are just as difficult now as Read More
A Pigeon Sat On A Branch Reflecting On Existence (TIFF Review) Movie

A Pigeon Sat On A Branch Reflecting On Existence (TIFF Review)

The auteur label is becoming more and more of a taboo, since it implies a belittling attitude towards the hundreds of people working on a given film. In this way, Swedish maestro Roy Andersson is something of a relic; while his movies must be meticulously crafted by hundreds of participants, it’s his inimitable vision that perseveres. Read More
TIFF 2014: From What is Before Film Festival

TIFF 2014: From What is Before

Every time something gets written about Lav Diaz, an explanation of the director’s unusual, tough filmography feels necessary. When it comes to length, Diaz is one of the most maximal directors around. It says something when Diaz’s last film, the 4 hour Norte, the End of History, is one of his shortest works. From What Read More
TIFF 2014: Goodbye to Language 3D Film Festival

TIFF 2014: Goodbye to Language 3D

Like the film’s 70 minute runtime, I’ll be brief. Jean-Luc Godard tackles three dimensions in his latest film, a complete sensory assault that, like his other recent works, can only be attributed to the legendary filmmaker. Narrative and characters don’t truly matter here; something one character explicitly states at one point. There are two couples Read More
Tu Dors Nicole (TIFF Review) Movie

Tu Dors Nicole (TIFF Review)

Stephane Lafleur’s Tu Dors Nicole (literally translated to “You’re sleeping, Nicole”) takes place over one languid, youthful summer, shot gorgeously on black and white 35mm film. The 22-year-old title character (Julianne Côté), does nothing but aimlessly wander the neighborhood when not working at a thrift store, looking forward to summertime. With her parents away on Read More
TIFF 2014: Gett, The Trial of Viviane Amsalem Film Festival

TIFF 2014: Gett, The Trial of Viviane Amsalem

In Gett, The Trial of Viviane Amsalem, the title character (played by co-director Ronit Elkabetz) spends 5 years trying to divorce her husband Elisha (Simon Abkarian). In Israel, divorce cases are only handled by the Rabbinical Court, and religious laws state the husband must approve the divorce in order for it to be final. Elisha Read More
TIFF 2014: Goodnight Mommy Film Festival

TIFF 2014: Goodnight Mommy

Austrian filmmakers Veronika Franz (wife of auteur Ulrich Seidl) and Severin Fiala first present Goodnight Mommy as a mystery with a horror film premise–two nine-year-old twin brothers question their mother’s identity after a facial surgery leaves most of her face covered with bandages. The boys notice their mother acting out of the ordinary, she never Read More
Still the Water (TIFF Review) Movie

Still the Water (TIFF Review)

At one point during Still the Water, a character says one has to “keep a humble attitude towards nature; it’s impossible to resist it.” That line might be the most succinct summary of what writer/director Naomi Kawase shows throughout her film. Taking place on the gorgeous island of Amami-Oshima, Still the Water delves into themes Read More
TIFF 2014: Hill of Freedom Film Festival

TIFF 2014: Hill of Freedom

Hong Sang-soo has made yet another film (his 16th one, to be exact), and for those aware of the filmmaker it should come as no surprise Hill of Freedom shares similar qualities to his other works. Hong’s films, usually dealing with a director, some sort of romance, miscommunications, a lot of drinking and some sort Read More
TIFF 2014: 1001 Grams Film Festival

TIFF 2014: 1001 Grams

Prominent Norwegian filmmaker Bent Hamer returns to the festival in the Masters program with his latest film 1001 Grams. The film isn’t about drugs, but the premise is equally fascinating. Marie (Ane Dahl Torp) dedicates her life to measurements, carefully maintaining Norway’s national kilo at the perfect kilogram weight, the standard unit for which all Read More
Silvered Water, Syria Self-Portrait (TIFF Review) Movie

Silvered Water, Syria Self-Portrait (TIFF Review)

As Silvered Water, Syria Self-Portrait opens, a title card claims “1,001 Syrians” helped make the film. The reason for such a bold and unconfirmed claim is because of co-director Ossama Mohammed’s reliance on footage from online sources. Mohammed, a Syrian filmmaker, left his country in forced exile back in 2011 as the Syrian Civil War Read More
They Have Escaped (TIFF Review) Movie

They Have Escaped (TIFF Review)

Finnish filmmaker J.-P. Valkeapää comes up with a wild take on a boy-meets-girl story in They Have Escaped, which appropriately premieres in the offbeat Vanguard section of the Toronto International Film Festival. Using intriguing camera techniques, the film expends an excellent atmospheric tone, especially during key dream sequences. Though it’s a pleasure to look at, Read More
TIFF 2014: Wild Tales Film Festival

TIFF 2014: Wild Tales

Wild Tales consists of six twisted short stories, all written by writer/director Damian Szifron. Most anthology films tend to use different directors for each story, but Szifron handles every single one here. Having one writer and director gives Wild Tales the benefit of a strong thematic core linking each segment together. What’s surprising is that, even Read More
Tokyo Tribe (TIFF Review) Movie

Tokyo Tribe (TIFF Review)

In a dystopian Tokyo, 23 “tribes” (read: gangs) rule different sections of the city. These tribes range from the GiraGira Girls, a group of women including a whip cracking dominatrix, to the Musashino Saru, a gang all about promoting peace and love. But it’s the Bukuro Wu-Ronz who run everything, and their leader Big Buppa Read More