|Ryerson red carpet|
|'Iceman' Director Ariel Vromen|
As I mentioned before, I was very excited to see this film, and I'm glad I did because it was very entertaining, disturbing, and intriguing. Michael Shannon was brilliant in playing the mob hitman Kuchinski who is reported to have murdered over 100 people for mob related deeds. Shannon's slow burn violent anger was revealed by his glassy stare and abated breath as he marked his targets. As cold as a killer he was, he showed a different side of the hitman who was a devoted family man who loved his family very much. Winona Ryder did a fine job as his wife, and the film also featured David Schwimmer, James Franco, and Stephen Dorf in small, but vital roles. Ray Liotta was his usual self as a nasty mob guy (he's being type casted). Very good film, I highly recommend it if you have a strong stomach.
|TIFF CEO, Piers Handling introduces 'The Time Being'|
|Writer Richard Gladstein (b) and Director Nenad Cicin-Sain (f)|
The Time Being
I did not know much about this film going into it, other than the synopsis. This film is about a recluse artist who commissions an up and coming struggling artist to film some public scenes for him at specific places, at a specific time. You wonder why it has to be this way until the artist does it again for the second filming. The old recluse, wonderfully played by Frank Langella, does not have long to live and wants to see places and people he won't be able to see. However, the struggling artist, played by Wes Bentley, sacrifices his family priorities and jobs to take on this job, in which he desperately needs the money from. In the end, this film is about family, and what an artist does to fulfill his/her legacy, by any means necessary. And sometimes, when money and fame is valued more than family, you wind up all alone from that decision. Amazing art is on view throughout this film.
|Passion Director, Brian DePalma|
|Rachel and DePalma|
|Rachel was sweet and looked gorgeous!|
In typical Brian DePalma mode, this film is wonderfully skanky and trashy. Starring Rachel McAdams as Christine, and Noomi Rapace as Isabella, these two women define insane, bitchy, and backstabbing to new heights. If you thought office politics at your job sucks, thank the Gods you don't work with either of these women. Passion has a soap opera feel to it with all the women walking around like they are in a two-hour L'Oreal commercial. Someone dies and it's a mind-boggling twist in figuring out who killed who, and the twists will either make you gasp, scratch your head, or laugh. I enjoyed Passion for what it was, sexy and fun. Don't go into this film wanting something cerebral, you ain't gonna get it.
After the end of Passion, Rachel and Brian came out, and we sang happy birthday to DePalma. Rachel McAdams is one of my girl crushes, I love her, I think she's a great actress, and beautiful. So it was brilliant seeing her on stage of the Winter Garden theatre, answering questions for about 20 minutes with Brian. She even recognized and called out the name of one of the people who asked her a question, this guy went to high school with her. Very cool! As I type this, I'm drinking a 'happy birthday martini', a very strong one, and I feel very light head (Thanks Brian!) and delightfully woozy. What a perfect way to end my 9th tiff!
I have just one film on Day 7. It will be Great Expectations, an 11am showing at the Elgin. Afterwards, I take the 4:30 train back to reality. Damn, I always hate the end of my tiff trip. TIFF will continue through this Sunday, and there are still so many films I just could not see. But what I missed, I will see later on in either theatre, or on DVD.
In the coming days upon my return home, I would like to make a feature post highlighting many more images that I took, and that will be shared with me from my friend and host, Glenn, who went to different screenings, and has a super telephoto lens to get even more up close than my camera was able to. Stay tuned, and thanks for reading my reports from the 39th Toronto International Film Festival!