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Toronto Film Festival

  • Festivals

2021 TIFF Notes: Docs: “Comala” (2021)

A stirring autobiographical examination of the long shadows of familial neglect and violence, director Gian Cassini’s Comala uses the 2010 murder of his estranged father to explore trauma left undiscussed and truths left unsaid. A world premiere at the 2021 Toronto International Film Festival, the movie deftly sidesteps any type of pat true crime framing of its details, slowly developing into something much more delicate, ruminative, and haunting.
  • Festivals

2021 TIFF Notes: Docs: “Jagged” (2021)

Alanis Morissette’s 1995 album Jagged Little Pill, which would go on to sell 33 million copies worldwide, arrived with a bang, stirring up no small amount of cultural commentary and controversy with its emotionally raw lyrics. So, it’s perhaps fitting that a documentary about its making, reception, and touring, which recently enjoyed its world premiere at the 2021 Toronto International Film Festival, would end up also engendering friction.
  • Festivals

2021 TIFF Notes: Docs: The Rescue (2021)

The People’s Choice Award winner in the nonfiction section of the 2021 Toronto International Film Festival, The Rescue recounts a three-week story that gripped the world’s imagination in the summer of 2018 – a race against time in impending monsoon conditions to locate and extricate 12 members of a junior football team, ages 11 to 16, and their assistant coach trapped inside a flooded cave in northern Thailand. Co-directed by Elizabeth Chai Vasarhelyi and Jimmy Chin, the Academy Award-winning married tandem behind Free Solo, this well-crafted and highly engaging movie, set for theatrical release later in the year by Greenwich Entertainment, is almost certain to be a mainstay on awards season documentary shortlists.
  • Festivals

2021 TIFF Notes: “I’m Your Man” (2021)

How would you react if the perfect partner were created for you – designed to respond to your every conscious or unconscious need?  That’s the premise behind Maria Shrader’s German film, I’m Your Man, which captured our imagination at the Toronto International Film Festival. German actress Maren Eggert plays scientist Alma Felser, a single woman who is extremely cynical and reluctant to take on a job evaluating a new line of humanoid cyborgs to determine what rights they should be granted in society.
  • Festivals

2021 TIFF Notes: Docs: “Beba” (2021)

An autobiographical self-portrait and the feature film debut of Rebeca Huntt, Beba generated considerable buzz ahead of its world premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival. A defiantly uncommercial filmic essay that sifts through questions of mental health, family history, racial identity, and general late-Millennial occupational uncertainty from the perspective of a young Afro-Latina woman of Dominican and Venezuelan parentage, this documentary is unlikely to connect with a mainstream audience; it honestly feels like an act of cinematic self-care as much as anything else.
  • Festivals

2021 TIFF Notes: Docs: “Dionne Warwick: Don’t Make Me Over” (2021)

It is impossible to overstate the extraordinary success or impact of Dionne Warwick, the music superstar who for 44 years was one the biggest hit-makers in the world, with 56 singles making the Hot 100. Though there have been many recordings of her TV performances, Dionne Warwick: Don’t Make Me Over, which is directed by David Heilbroner and Dave Wooley, is the first comprehensive documentary about the legendary crossover singer and political activist.