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You Need a Change From What You Do All Day: 10 Totally Tubular Toronto Film Fest Premieres

By Cindy Davis | Seriously Random Lists | July 26, 2012 | Comments ()


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The Toronto International Film Festival begins September 6, and among the announced line-up there are a few big name films: Cloud Atlas, Anna Karenina, Much Ado About Nothing, Argo, as well as the usual (earnest) subjects: Writers, The Perks of Being a Wallflower, Ginger and Rosa. I like to go digging around for other treasure--the violent, the warped and the interestingly cast--so here are ten films that caught my eye. One of them is guaranteed* necessary to your life.

If you only have time to watch one trailer, make it The Iceman.

10. Looper: Rian Johnson's (Brick, The Brothers Bloom) time-travel, action thriller that sends Joseph Gordon Levitt into the future to kill himself (Bruce Willis).

This is the one you've probably heard about already, and though you may have also seen the trailer, you need to watch it again.

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9. The Impossible: Juan Antonio Bayona's (The Orphanage) family-eye view of a tsunami, starring Ewan McGregor and Naomi Watts.

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Yes, Ewan McGregor sounds funny, but the visuals are heart-stopping.


8. A Late Quartet: Christopher Walken, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Catherine Keener and Imogen Poots are the musicians and friends who have been together for twenty-five years, when one of them is struck down by illness. Sounds a little depressing, but Walken and Seymour Hoffman together! And then Wallace Shawn shows up. Inconceivable!

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7. To the Wonder: Ben Affleck finally fixes his hair, takes a trip and falls in love--with the wrong chick. Then he finds the right one, closer to home. And it's all beautiful to watch, because Terrence Malick directed the film. Javier Bardem plays a priest...and he's beautiful. If that's not enough to perk up your ears, the film also stars Rachel McAdams, Rachel Weisz, Michael Sheen, Amanda Peet and Olga Kurylenko; all this useless beauty? I think not.

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6. The Hunt (North American premiere, Mads Mikkelsen, Best Actor Award winner at Cannes 2012): A false accusation has terrifying consequences. Directed by Lars von Trier contemporary, Thomas Vinterberg, The Hunt examines mass hysteria at its worst.


5. Hyde Park on Hudson: Erm, Bill Murray as FDR? Who else?

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This is not my usual cup of tea, but I've no doubt Bill Murray can pull out all the ass sticks.


4. Jayne Mansfield's Car: John Hurt, Robert Duvall, a ridiculously coiffed Kevin Bacon, Frances O'Connor, Ray Stevenson, Shawnee Smith, Tippi Hedren and Robert Patrick are directed by Billy Bob Thornton. I don't know what the hell it's really about (family clash), but what the hell, throw all those people together and stir.


3. The Place Beyond the Pines: Ryan Gosling reunites with his Blue Valentine director, Derek Cianfrance, to play a professional motorcyclist turned bank robber, who faces off with rookie cop/politician Bradley Cooper. Shot almost entirely in Schenectady, the film also stars Ray Liotta, Bruce Greenwood, Ben Mendelsohn, Dane DeHaan Eva Mendes and Rose Byrne.

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2. Byzantium: Director Neil Jordan (The Crying Game, The End of the Affair, Breakfast on Pluto, "The Borgias") takes on a mother/daughter vampire tale. Starring Saoirse Ronan, Gemma Arterton, Jonny Lee Miller, Caleb Landry Jones, Sam Riley, Tom Hollander and Daniel Mays.

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Jordan and Saoirse Ronan discuss the Byzantium story and working together:


1. The Iceman: Michael Mothereffing Shannon as contract killer Richard Kuklinski. Also starring James Franco, Chris Evans, Winona Ryder, Steven Dorff,

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You will get chills.

Also of note, Viggo Mortensen in Everybody Has a Plan (Debut in Argentina, August 30):

And the Python animated feature, A Liar's Autobiography - The Untrue Story of Monty Python's Graham Chapman

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* Not really.


Cindy Davis would follow Michael Shannon anywhere.



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Comments Are Welcome, Jerks Will Be Banned


  • Viking

    There is twice the usual amount of Viggo in Everybody Has a Plan. That is reason enough to watch it even if I can't speak Spanish or find a version that is subtitled or dubbed. Though I bet you there is only one Viggo left standing at the end of that film.

  • piedlourde

    MICHAEL WINCOTT, you sexy bastard! That voice!

  • Wapshin

    CAW! CAW!
    BANG!
    F*CK!
    I'M DEAD!

  • richardM

    The best one amongst here is "The Impossible" starring Naomi Watts, and Ewan McGregor.

  • When was Jayne Mansfield's Car made? The cast all look younger than they should...

  • $27019454

    ALL of these sound totally rad. But I need to ask...Imogen Poots is one of a band of friends who have known one another for 25 years (as your synopsis says)?? Isn't Imogen Poots like...21 years old or something? She's a toddler! Practically.

    Also: VIGGO.

  • AlbertCx

    Because she is a super-smart psychic baby genius!!!! -or probably she plays the daughter/lover/student of one of the characters... Oh please let it be Catherine Keener then!!!

  • Judge Holdenmynuts

    "Michael Wincott as Mr Softee " AAAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAH

    that movie looks good. more parts for Michael Shannon please....

  • Toronto get christmas early this year. Holy crap, that's a slate of potential goodness.

    What I don't get is what happened to JGL's face/eyes in Looper - it's like he had a little Ray Liotta graft done, which while countering his gentle goofiness, is a little off-putting.

  • Kelly

    I know right? I saw the trailer for Looper in the theatre and spent most of it trying to figure out if that was JGL or not. What's going on with your face dude?

  • Pat

    They made him a bit more Bruce Willis-y

  • thaneofmemphis

    How spoilery is the Looper trailer? Dare I watch?

  • TheOriginalMRod

    Somehow Michael Shannon looks less menacing with a mustache and with a gun in his hand shooting someone, portraying a contract killer, than he does in Boardwalk Empire. How is that even possible!?!

  • danielwcarlson

    The fall is like my Christmas. Or something.

    Anyway, I'm excited.

  • You'll be busy!

  • TherecanbeonlyoneAdmin

    I think that's the first time I've ever seen
    Mads Mikkelsen not look completely terrifying.

  • $27019454

    To me he always looks extremely menacing in that "Lets have rough sex for days" way.

  • Kelly

    Yes to this a thousand times. Good God that man is sexy to me. I can't believe I forgot him for the Five Freebies list.

  • QueeferSutherland

    Cloud Atlas was added to the lineup this week. On the hell of this morning's fantabulous trailer I'd say it deserves a place on this list.

  • Cloud Atlas is mentioned in my opening paragraph as one of the biggies.

  • QueeferSutherland

    I AM VERY IMPORTANT! I HAVE LIMITED TIME! YOU CANT EXPECT ME TO READ INTRO PARAGRAPHS!!!! MORE PICTURES AND LESS WORDS!!!!

    Gotcha. I just saw big films like Looper, Place Beyond the Pines, and To The Wonder on the list and wondered how Cloud Atlas missed out.

  • anikitty

    I'm sure it's been said before, maybe even here, but The Place Beyond the Pines is Drive on a bike?

  • Lauren_Lauren

    Yes. It's part of Gosling's series of criminals who operate transport mechanisms professionally. Next up will be a con man unicyclist, followed by an assassin with a really fast canoe.

  • melissa82

    then they'll pass it onto the next generation. you'll get chills when he teaches his daughter to Drive her Big Wheel.

  • alannaofdoom

    Not gonna lie, I would see both of those. Especially the canoe.

  • I'm sure there'll be a skateboard one, to help make Tony Hawk happen on film.

  • Sara_Tonin00

    my sentiments exactly.

  • thaneofmemphis

    Drive 2: 2 Wheels Good, 4 Wheels Bad.

  • googergieger

    So no Korean flicks eh? I'll still check out the hitman shiznos I reckon. Tend to like those flicks more often than not. Wish Nameless Gangster started making its rounds through the festival circuits already though. Flick of the year, I tell you what.

  • Fantastico

    Michael Shannon's looking a little Swanson-y in that Iceman clip. Of course, in a much more deranged, pants-shittingly terrifying way.

  • Bedewcrock

    in all seriousness, just want to put a thank you out there to pajiba for doing this task for me. scrolling through apple.com/trailers without quicktime has become difficult and youtube kinda blows. gracias.

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