Monday, September 10, 2012

Day 5 - At Any Price, The Impossible, and London - Modern Babylon

Today was a much more calmer day at TIFF and that's because it's a Monday! Unlike the Fri-Sun tiff schedule, which is heavy loaded with the hottest of the hot screenings, Mondays and the rest of the week, while busy, are a lot less hectic. The three films I saw today were all good; one was fiction, one was based on a true story, and the other was a documentary. I didn't have the opportunity to take intro or Q&A pics because, as it's Monday, directors and celebrities are starting to leave who had premieres over the past 4 days.

Director Ramin Bahrani and co-star Clancy Brown

At Any Price

This film stars Dennis Quaid and Zac Efron as a father and son whose family owns a large farm. The son played by Zac harbours resentment towards his father because he doesn't want to become a farmer for the rest of his life, but instead, a race car driver. The standard family turmoil simmers while the father, Dennis Quaid, becomes part of an investigation by a large corporation that bio-engineers seeds. A terrible accident happens that forces the family to make a moral decision that would eat at the soul of most normal people. Because of this plot twist, it made this 'all-american' film take an unexpected dark twist.

Score: 7/10

The Impossible

When a family is ripped apart by a tsunami, the human spirit is amazing how it can preserver. Unlike training for a fire drill, there is no life training for a tsunami. This true story is based on one family's experience during the Christmas day tsunami of 2004. The special effects are breathtaking, you really feel as if you are a part of the struggle to survive the tsunami. Naomi Watts is the mother, and Ewan McGregor is the father. Without giving away spoilers as to who survives, you have to watch it yourself to have an appreciation of enjoying vacation in paradise one minute, and in the next, being in hell on Earth and having the wits and the luck to survive.

Score: 8.5/10

London - Modern Babylon

Julien Temple directed this documentary about London, England over the span of 100 years. From the late 19th century Anglo-Saxon dominant city, to the now 40% ethnically diverse global city that it is today. All the good and the bad that has happened to the city has made London what it is today. To the person who loves London, visits it often, or live there, this is a great documentary to view to have a better understanding about the resiliency of London, and to learn  about how and why it is the city it is that no other city in the world can compare to. Infused with commentary by people who are British by lineage, and by people who are established or new immigrants, they all give a different perspective of life in London. The gap between the haves and the have nots are tremendous, and London, is faced with how to balance this because the city needs both to survive. This is a very good documentary with fantastic brit pop/classic rock as its soundtrack.

Score: 8/10

On Tuesday I have three more films including The Iceman and Passion. More reviews and more pics tomorrow! Meanwhile, here is a really good article in 'Autographs tougher to score at tiff'. This sums up my comments about the way the red carpet has been set up in the past two years through the current festival.

Chicken Teriyaki - Yum!

The police outside of the Princess of Wales

Another view of fans, paparazzi, and cops

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