"Young people today are too often found in a space of social homelessness, where we are invisible in public discourse, and the value of our lived experience is reduced to teenage weirdness." A poetic statement of what youth need.
Alê Abreu’s animated odyssey follows a young boy as he journeys from the country into a towering metropolis in search of his father. Awaiting him is a world where music gives birth to birds, cities float in the sky and good and evil clash in a riot of colour. “A simple, universal parable… An enchanting visual treat…”—Variety
Garnering audience awards all over the festival circuit, Richie Adams’ true indie is a beautiful, soul-stirring drama that brings together the city of New Orleans and the jazz that made it famous with the story of a haunted neuroscientist trying to help the declining jazz singer (The Help’s Aunjanue Ellis, remarkable here) he discovers singing in the streets.
Six stunning buildings, six auteurs and glorious 3D come together in this hymn to the art of architecture. The Berliner Philharmonie concert hall (Wim Wenders), California’s Salk Institute (Robert Redford), the National Library in St. Petersburg (Michael Glawogger), Denmark’s Halden prison (Michael Madsen), the Oslo Opera House (Margreth Olin) and the Pompidou in Paris (Karim Ainouz) are brought to life like never before. (Important Note: Only the Sep. 30 screening at International Village #9 will be in projected in 3D. The Oct. 4 screening at The Centre for the Performing Arts will be projected in standard 2D.)
Imtiaz Ali’s drama is anchored by A.R. Rahman’s forceful score and Alia Bhatt’s amazing turn as a kidnapped heiress. "Abduction paradoxically results in liberation for both the sheltered daughter of a rich industrialist and her hardened-criminal kidnapper in… this Bollywood road movie, which intertwines dark social issues and blithe romance [and succeeds] thanks in part to relative newcomer Alia Bhatt’s endearingly cockeyed performance."—Variety
Five neighbourhoods, five different rooftops, five tragic stories. With these tales, veteran director Merzak Allouache takes the pulse of Algiers, a city rife with crime, teeming with intrigue and reeling from the clash of cultures. Allouache’s view is at once panoramic and intimate: he reaches across the city and pulls us close to its people. “Confident, composed and full of contemporary relevance.”—Filmmaker
Alejandro Fernández Almendras
Beautifully wrought and meticulously controlled, Alejandro Fernández Almendras’ taut drama follows a bullied man as he wrestles with the moral implications of revenge… "A terrifically tense first half culminates in a truly brilliant scene… [and it] all ends with a dramatic pop as sharp as the first of only two gunshots in this menacing, morally agnostic film."—Guardian. Winner, World Cinema Grand Jury Prize: Dramatic, Sundance 2014.
Lisandro Alonso returns with a gorgeous, 19th century-set existential exploration. Viggo Mortensen is a Danish engineer who heads into the Patagonian wilderness in search of his missing daughter. "This hallucinatory head-trip Western remains unmistakably Alonso’s film… a metaphysical road movie in which origin and destination are markedly less important than the journey itself."—Variety. Winner, FIPRESCI Prize, Un Certain Regard, Cannes 2014.
Bizarre circumstances makes reluctant bedfellows out of American con artist Chester (Viggo Mortensen) and Athens hustler Rydal (Oscar Isaac) in Hossein Amini’s absorbing 60s-set adaptation of Patricia Highsmith’s novel. As they evade the authorities, Chester’s wife (Kirsten Dunst) finds herself torn between these seductive charlatans. “An elegantly pleasurable period thriller, a film of tidy precision and class.”—Telegraph
Ana Lily Amirpour
Looking for love (and hemoglobin) in the desolate streets of Iranian ghost town Bad City, a lonesome, alluring vampire (Sheila Vand) must also navigate the comically offbeat, unequivocally cool reality envisioned by director Ana Lily Amirpour. Channelling vintage Jarmusch and cranking the post-punk soundtrack to spellbinding effect, “Amirpour has crafted a beguiling, cryptic and often surprisingly funny look at personal desire.”—Indiewire
Shailene Woodley (The Fault in Our Stars) plays the insecure suburban daughter of a seriously disturbed mother (Eva Green, unforgettable) who disappears without a trace in Gregg Araki’s skewed and provocative 80s-set drama. "Araki… seizes on White Bird as a chance to explore familiar issues of body image, sexual awakening and extreme family dysfunction with his trademark mix of uneasy seduce-and-repel tactics."—Variety
A terrific cast featuring Zabou Breitman, Pascal Elbe, Jacques Gamblin and Sylvie Testud anchors Alexandre Arcady’s true-life thriller. "[The film] offers up a white-knuckle dramatization of the nearly month-long kidnapping and torture of 23-year-old Ilan Halimi, whose traumatic ordeal… prompted a massive police manhunt and, eventually, a national outcry against anti-Semitism in France… Captivating…"—Hollywood Reporter
The latest from Denys Arcand (The Decline of the American Empire, The Barbarian Invasions) is the story of Luke (Éric Bruneau), a brilliant young architect who’s beginning to earn acclaim while leading a peaceful, seemingly perfect life with his wife Stephanie (Mélanie Thierry) in Québec’s Charlevoix region. Invited to sit on a architecture jury in Toronto, he meets a mysterious woman who will change his life…
The extraordinary life of South American hero Simón Bolívar (the mesmerizing Édgar Ramírez, Carlos) is given appropriately epic treatment in Alberto Arvelo’s sumptuously mounted period piece. Beginning in the early 1800s and spanning 30 years in the great revolutionary’s struggles to free South Americans from the yoke of Spanish occupation, Arvelo’s impressive achievement is a rousing and entertaining corrective to Bolívar’s relative anonymity in North America.
Juliette Binoche is riveting as an actor asked to revisit the play that made her a star 20 years before—but this time she is to essay the role of the older woman, not the ingenue… "Though deceptively casual on its surface… [Olivier Assayas’ film is] a multi-layered, femme-driven meta-fiction that pushes all involved—including next-gen starlets Kristen Stewart and Chloë Grace Moretz—to new heights."—Variety
Legendary accordionist, composer and singer José Domingos de Morais—better known as Dominguinhos—died last year, but not before participating in Joaquim Castro, Eduardo Nazarian and Mariana Aydar’s celebration of his life and music. With his wide smile and prodigious talent, Dominguinhos and his unique mix of bossa nova, jazz and pop, all anchored by his baião rhythms, will leave you delighted.