Top 5 TIFF 2012 Movies: Which Doesn’t Include Looper, Sorry JGL

You’ve all probably seen the trailer for Looper at this point. The futuristic thriller has been earning top marks with critics, and also has earned the distinction of being the second non-Canadian film in a row to open the Toronto International Film Festival ( Sept. 6-16, 2012).

It looks pretty good, and I’m happy for Joseph Gordon Levitt who has seamlessly transitioned from sitcom star to indie darling to major action star with his appearances in Nolan’s Inception and Dark Knight Rises. But I am most impressed with his Bruce Willis impression. Apparently they had to enlarge his jowls so he would bear a closer resemblance to the aging action star (kind of like how De Niro made a prosthetic mold to imitate Brando’s Don Corleone).

But anyways, there’s over 300 films to choose from so let’s narrow it down a bit.

(5) Like Someone In Love

Set in Tokyo, Abbas Kiarostami uses an odd coupling, a call girl named Akiko (Rin Takanashi) and an elderly professor to explore the thin line between real life and role play. Takashi (Tadashi Okuno) does not want to spend the night alone, but he’s not looking for sex, just conversation. After the two are caught together by Akiko’s boyfriend (Ryo Kase) they pretend that they are blood related in order to avoid an unnecessary scandal, but how long can they keep up the charade?

Trailer reminds me of: Lost in Translation, Last Tango in Paris, Chungking Express

(4) Men at Lunch

Inspired by this iconic photograph of eleven workmen eating lunch on top of a construction site in NYC, Seán Ó Cualáin’s documentary investigates what possessed these men (who are they anyways?) to perform this death defying act when the country was still in the throes of the Great Depression.

(3) Midnight’s Children

For Salman Rushdie fans, Canadian filmmaker Deepa Mehta brings his epic postcolonial book to life. Just as India is about to be liberated from their British colonizers, children discover that they suddenly have all sorts of strange, magical abilities. A young boy named Saleem (Satya Bhabha) uses his newfound telepathic abilities to round up of all of these children so they can discover the meaning of their gifts and the implications they may hold for the future.

(2) Silver Linings Playbook

Pat (Bradley Cooper) and Tiffany (Jennifer Lawrence)  are both angry, sarcastic individuals with mental health issues. Their families think they’re both nutcases and shouldn’t be together, but oddly enough they are their best selves around each other.

I would never have imagined these two actors pairing up together, but kudos to David O. Russell, because they have surprisingly good chemistry and comic timing. (This is also, I believe, the second collaboration between Robert De Niro and Bradley Cooper.)

(1) Imagine

In this Andrzej Jakimowski film, Ian (Edward Hogg) is a confident young man who manages to navigate throughout life without the use of a cane even though he is completely blind. When he seeks shelter at an institute for the blind in Lisbon, the other occupants treat him with skepticism but a young woman named Eva (Alexandra Maria Lara) is intrigued. Ian claims that thanks to the powers of the imagination he can see the landscape around them, offering hope to those who are afraid to carry on. But is it really that easy?

What are you planning to see at TIFF?

[Cover Photo via ohsoglassy]

[Photos via TIFF]


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