TIFF 2010: Ricky D’s Blog Entry #8: Goodbye TIFF

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Well my movie watching for this year’s Toronto International Film Festival is finally over. The last two movies I watched were Aftershock and Monsters. Unlike last year where I spent most of my time at the press screenings, I had a chance to visit every cinema. My personal favourite is still The Winter Garden Cinema with The Roy Thompson Hall in second place. If you have never been to TIFF and you head up one day, I highly recommend you purchase a ticket to either one of these venues. Midnight Madness still remains my personal favourite program. Watching genre films with 1400 genre enthusiasts at midnight is always fun, even when watching a bad movie. I continue to be impressed with how well organized the festival is and how many volunteers they have. This year every movie I saw started on time and the programmers left enough time for a Q&A without delaying the next film. However what is really strange is how the excitement seems to die down after six days and the lines become increasingly shorter. I realize the festival is one of the biggest in the world but it also only runs for eleven days as appose to say Fantasia, which is three weeks long. Yet Fantasia excitement and waiting lines only grow, so why is it that people seem less interested in the last five days of TIFF? My theory is that they pack the first half of the festival with as many big stars and bigger pictures as they can, so the second half feels less important somehow. I know I am not alone in thinking this because so far three of my colleague (all who work in the industry) have also made similar comments and actually stated that they never stick around for the last weekend. Finally one rather negative remark to make before I sign off, is how I am continuously surprised at how many moviegoers show up at every screening shocked at how big the lineups are. This festival has been around for decades and continues to grow. Have they never walked around the city in September and noticed the line ups? Also since I am speaking about the lineups, I really don’t see a point anymore in lining up an hour early prior to the start of a film. I have honestly walked into every public screening at this year’s festival and always found great seats.

Tonight was yet another great night. I got to chat with the director of Monsters, Gareth Edwards and hopefully we will have an interview up shortly. My biggest regret was missing Dustin Lance Black by one minute, only because I stopped for directions. Both directors are great guys, down to earth and very charismatic. Having an interview with either or both would be great for the show.

Last year I managed to watch 18 movies in 5 ½ days whereas this year I only crammed in eleven in one week. Still it was worth it, considering all the networking I did. But I guarantee I will be watching at least four a day next year. Well I will be heading back to Montreal in the morning to prepare for this week’s radio show. It’s a strange feeling taking a week off. It feels like I have been gone for a month rather than a week, so I am really excited to get back into the studio to record. On Monday’s show we will review The Town and talk about our trip to TIFF and if there’s time we may just squeeze in a review of Gone Baby Gone.

I’m now looking forward to the FNC festival here in Montreal which kicks off in two weeks. FNC is what I like to call the baby TIFF, only unlike TIFF it is really all about the movies and not the celebrities. It is by far the best film festival in Montreal. FNC picks up all the major art-house films that screened at Venice and Cannes and a few from Toronto, so it always makes for a great lineup.

– Ricky

p.s.

I should be posting more reviews in the next two days with hopes of getting it all done by Sunday.

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