If you’re more interested in the typical fall slate of festival entrees than summer’s glut of tentpole action fare, this is a great week. The Toronto International Film Festival announced the first wave of films that will play the fest in September. This is a batch of about 50 titles, which makes up only a small chunk of the programming. Usually TIFF features between two and three hundred films. But these are some of the highest-profile entries.

Below you’ll find rundowns on the new films from George Clooney, Bennett Miller, Jay & Mark Duplass, Todd Solondz, Francis Ford Coppola, Cameron Crowe, Sarah Polley, Fernando Meirelles, Lars von Trier, Marc Forster, Steve McQueen, Alexander Payne, and Lynne Ramsay. No announcement yet of the Midnight Madness programming choices, always some of my faves, but this is a great start. Read More »

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justin-bieber3

This is a great little story for everyone whose head tried to recreate the beginning of Scanners when they saw the headline “Director of An Inconvenient Truth to Make 3D Justin Bieber Biopic.” Only a couple dozen hours after being linked to Justin Bieber‘s very own version of 8 Mile, director Davis Guggenheim has passed on the project. Why did the Oscar winner move on? Why do you think? Read More »

Trailers are an under-appreciated art form insofar that many times they’re seen as vehicles for showing footage, explaining films away, or showing their hand about what moviegoers can expect. Foreign, domestic, independent, big budget: I celebrate all levels of trailers and hopefully this column will satisfactorily give you a baseline of what beta wave I’m operating on, because what better way to hone your skills as a thoughtful moviegoer than by deconstructing these little pieces of advertising? Some of the best authors will tell you that writing a short story is a lot harder than writing a long one, that you have to weigh every sentence. What better medium to see how this theory plays itself out beyond that than with movie trailers?

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2007 Academy Awards Winners

Let’s look at the results from the 79th Academy Awards ceremony:

Best Motion Picture of the Year:

The Departed
  • Babel
  • Letters from Iwo Jima
  • Little Miss Sunshine
  • The Queen

Achievement in Directing:

Martin Scorsese for The Departed
  • Clint Eastwood for Letters from Iwo Jima
  • Stephen Frears for The Queen
  • Alejandro González Iñárritu for Babel
  • Paul Greengrass for United 93

Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role:

Forest Whitaker for The Last King of Scotland
  • Leonardo DiCaprio for Blood Diamond
  • Ryan Gosling for Half Nelson
  • Peter O’Toole for Venus
  • Will Smith for The Pursuit of Happyness

Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role:

Helen Mirren for The Queen
  • Penélope Cruz for Volver
  • Judi Dench for Notes on a Scandal
  • Meryl Streep for The Devil Wears Prada
  • Kate Winslet for Little Children

Read More »

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