Grief is a funny thing; its affects on people change not only the person experiencing such a powerful and life-altering emotion, but it changes the way people around you view you, and the choices people make around you. One of the many emotions and reflections that the film allowed me to analyze was, thankfully for myself, the lack of grief that I have had to experience in my life thus far, and the amount of grief stricken in the world around me, with numerous people who have directly dealt with lose first-hand in my life everyday.
One of the most fascinating and wholly satisfying moments of Hollywood cinema is being present during that moment when a prominent and famous comedy actor transitions from their comfortable, recognizable and iconic genre to that of a raw and unglamorous dramatic role. Luckily for us, such is the case for the quick witted, dirtied tongue comedy actress Sarah Silverman, in her latest film I Smile Back.
Tom Hooper seems to be the period piece go-to director for by-the-numbers Oscar films. After the immense success of the little indie that could The King’s Speech gaining massive momentum at TIFF in 2010, going on to win the coveted Best Picture Oscar; then the grand and highly ambitious Les Miserables, Hooper seemed to have crafted a career out of production rich designs, strong performances and historically relevant social issues in his films. With the addition of Eddie Redmayne, fresh off his Oscar winning role in last year’s The Theory of Everything, Hooper’s newest The Danish Girl was expected to come out a clear winner. Sadly, The Danish Girl is a confused, highly theatrical and poorly constructed transparent film with laughable dialogue between its two leads Redmayne and rising star Alicia Vikander.
Toronto–One of the many advantages to watching films being premiered at film festivals is hearing a little bit of back story and reasoning as to how and why they are made. At the North American premiere of this year’s Palme D’Or winner Dheepan, held in the elegant Elgin Theatre in the heart of Toronto, acclaimed writer/director Jacques Audiard told the audience, “I wanted to make a film that would allow you to never look at those guys selling you roses at your dinner tables again”. Perhaps one of the best moments for the film altogether, Dheepan is one story that will surely change your perception of those gentlemen forever; however not necessarily in the most realistic or believable ways.
“It’s better to be sensitive than to be honest”.
It is no surprise that first time writer/director Natalie Portman is taking a Pro-Jewish stance in her newest film A Tale of Love and Darkness. A celebrated novel by one of, if not the most prolific novelists hailing from Israel, Amos Oz; a last name that literally translates to “hope” in Hebrew. Oz is a novelist whose book serves as a large and hopeful story towards conflict flooding the Middle East. Sadly for Portman, whose keen eye and collaboration with many talented directors, has allowed her to visually over-stylize her film with beauty and tones of dark and tragically elegant glimpses, without much of a handle on narrative and storytelling.