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TIFF 2008 Day 3

The Sky Crawlers
I was struggling for consciousness throughout this entire film, and everyone around me had the same problem. Really terrific battle scenes, but that was the only good thing about it. The 2D that overlaid on top of the 3D environments did not match stylistically, the pacing was really really slow, and the dialog was awkward and stilted. Most japanime has a problem which this film had in spades, which was they introduce pregnant pauses in lots of places where they can still frame, so they can burn time without having to expend the labour to draw new frames. It also didn’t help that all all the characters were supposed to be half asleep all the time. The director had the good sense not to show up. Because you probably won’t stay awake through to the end, I will spoil the ending for you so you won’t have to waste your time: they’re clones. 2/10

Edison and Leo
This is Canada’s first feature length stop motion animation film, and it’s a bit different than what you expect. It proudly proclaims its Canadian-ness, it’s subversive, and it’s a bit twisted. Aboriginal tribe exacts revenge on unscrupulous inventor Edison, but that is oversimplifying its complex and strange plot. Warning to parents: contains scenes of Graphic (with a capital G) violence. 8/10

Sidebar: this was the first film I saw at the new AMC at Toronto Life, and I am loving their digital projectors. High contrast, high saturation, and high resolution.

Director Neil Burns

The premise was promising: a couple who lost their son in the tsunami come to believe he is alive and search for him in the depths of the Burmese jungles. Ultimately though, this became “Lord of the Flies” meets the “Heart of Darkness”. Emmanuelle Beart had a very unlikeable character, and I had trouble with the Lord of the Flies part (I never liked that book nor movie). Cinematography sucked, it looked like it was filmed on 16 mm, very grainy and low resolution. 4/10

Director Fabrice Du Welz

Flame and Citron
Story of two Danish resistance fighters during WWII. Their portrayal is very different than most war movies, as they are not clear cut heroes. Or are they even heroes at all? High production values, good acting, good character development, and lots of double crosses. 7/10

Director Ole Christian Madsen

The Ghost
Novelist with writers block finds a muse in a professional assassin. Good pacing, good ending, interesting story. Could have had higher production values. 7/10

Director Karen Oganesyan, translator, TIFF program director, producer.

And some sights along the way

Back to school lapdance special!

You can’t wander about the streets of Toronto without tripping across a film shoot

A wedding at Queen’s Park

Some red carpet event that I didn’t stick around to find out what it was

Streetcar with a big denim ad



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