Our leading section combines major works from today’s masters with several other films that we are specially showcasing on the HUGE screen of The Centre for the Performing Arts, all topped off with a sprinkling of 3D art like you’ve never seen.
Films in this Series
A rousingly entertaining movie romance, this historical drama tells the deeply moving story of kung fu superstar Jackie Chan’s parents. Both grew up in China’s tumultuous 20th century, swept by war, revolution and resistance. When charismatic customs officer Fang (Lau Ching-wan) meets impoverished young widow Chen (Tang Wei), an unbreakable bond is forged. Together, their love endures through extraordinary adventures, as they head towards a future in Hong Kong. Shelly Kraicer
Charlie Kaufman, the celebrated screenwriter of Being John Malkovich and Adaptation and director of Synecdoche, New York, and Duke Johnson venture into the world of stop-motion animation with this fable about a motivational speaker seeking to transcend his monotonous existence.—Toronto International Film Festival
Jacques Audiard’s (A Prophet, Rust and Bone) latest dramatic inquiry into life on society’s margins is an alternately gripping and tender love story about the eponymous former Tamil fighter (Antonythasan Jesuthasan) and his improvised family, who exchange war in Sri Lanka for violence of another kind in Paris. "A searing yet hopeful slow-burn drama… Audiard delivers another distinctive [work] with this portrait of a family forged out of necessity…"—Hollywood Reporter
Ben Wheatley’s bold adaptation of J.G. Ballard’s novel takes no prisoners. This scorching satire on class, hedonism and depravity in an imploding luxury apartment building is an even more apocalyptic class polemic than Snowpiercer. Throw in exquisitely unsettling turns from Tom Hiddleston and Jeremy Irons, a string quartet cover of ABBA’s 1975 hit “SOS,” an orgy or two and spice with cannibalism, and you have a tour de force of astonishing architectural ambition.
Casablanca, Notorious, Voyage to Italy… That Ingrid Bergman, three-time Oscar winner, is one of filmdom’s all-time greats is inarguable. Narrated by Swedish (and now Hollywood) star Alicia Vikander, Stig Björkman’s intimate exploration of Bergman’s personal and professional life benefits immensely from the cooperation of Bergman’s daughter Isabella Rossellini, who allowed him access to never-before-seen private footage, notes, letters, diaries and interviews. The result is a rich and multicoloured portrait of this extraordinary human being—in her own words.
When a war photographer (Isabelle Huppert) dies on assignment, her husband (Gabriel Byrne) struggles to mount a retrospective while dealing with his grieving sons (Jesse Eisenberg, Devin Druid) and her combative colleague (David Strathairn). Joachim Trier (Oslo, 31st August) poses tough questions about family, marital responsibility and balancing one’s calling and kin. “A smart, measured tale steeped in understatement and complimented by first-rate performances…”—Indiewire
Directed by Lenny Abrahamson (Frank) and based on the best-selling Man Booker Prize-nominated novel by Irish-Canadian author Emma Donoghue, this is the story of five-year-old Jack, who lives in an 11-by-11-foot room with his mother. Since it’s all he’s ever known, Jack believes that only "Room" and the things it contains (including himself and Ma) are real. Then reality intrudes and Jack’s life is turned on its head… A remarkable and disturbing work.
A masterpiece of world cinema, Hou Hsiao-hsien’s exquisitely beautiful swordplay fantasy is both an instant classic and a profound work of art. Trained assassin Nie Yinniang (superstar Shu Qi) is compelled by her master to assassinate her childhood sweetheart, Governor Tian Ji’an (Chang Chen), but her assignment becomes increasingly morally ambiguous. Bursts of swordplay; soul-infused landscapes; the silence of philosophy. Wuxia cinema distilled to its essence. Shelly Kraicer
Naomi Klein (Shock Doctrine) has risen to prominence around the world as one of Canada’s most forceful and relevant public intellectuals. Her cogent call to direct action has inspired youth and helped chart roadmaps for social progressives and environmentalists. Yet, it’s also worried those who believe that her critique of capitalism plays into the hands of right-wingers who think climate change is a socialist plot. Join us, Naomi Klein and director Avi Lewis for this special presentation of This Changes Everything.
Michael Caine, Harvey Keitel and Rachel Weisz anchor Paolo Sorrentino’s gorgeous follow-up to The Great Beauty. Fred (Caine), a retired composer, and friend Mick (Keitel), a film director, are sojourning in a stunning Swiss alpine spa. Surrounded by bodies old and young, supple and sagging, they reconsider their pasts—while Sorrentino choreographs the action with exquisite control. "Sorrentino’s… brightly effusive visual imagination can be intoxicating…"—New York Times