Must See TIFF Movies

Black_Swan_posterEvery year around this time the Toronto International Film Festival launches, and with every year that passes the relevancy of the films shown increases.  Oscar winners have premiered at the festival in the past (American Beauty, Crash) as well as cult classics (The Princess Bride) and great Canadian cinema (Away From Her, Roadkill).  This year the lineup is just as comparable, and here some of the must see movies.

Black Swan: This psychological thriller stars Natalie Portman as a featured ballet dancer competing with a new rival company in New York.  Vincent Cassel, Mila Kunis, Barbara Hershey, and Winona Ryder also star in this movie made by director Darren Aronofsky who brought his critically acclaimed movie the Wrestler to TIFF two years ago.

The Town: Ben Affleck returns to his Boston roots in a movie he wrote, stars in, and directed.  As a bank thief plans his next robbery, he returns the scene of a former heist and becomes emotionally attached to the bank manager he once held hostage.

127 Hours:  Academy Award winning director Danny Boyle (Slumdog Millionaire) returns to TIFF with his latest feature film based on the true story of Aron Ralston.  James Franco stars as the mountain climber who finds himself faced with a difficult decision after becoming trapped in an isolated canyon in Utah.  This movie has all ready attracted a lot of buzz for its strong emotional and graphic content.

Buried: Ryan Reynolds stars in this movie about a U.S. contractor working in Iraq who becomes buried alive after being attacked.  All he’s given is a cell phone and a lighter to help in his race to escape the coffin before his air runs out.  Critics have given this movie a great review from its showing at the Sundance festival earlier in the year.

Hereafter: Clint Eastwood announced after his last film (Gran Torino) that he was no longer going to act, but he continues directing at a fast pace.  His latest offering is a supernatural thriller starring Matt Damon.  It’s a story about three people touched by death, and their connections to the afterlife.

A Beginner’s Guide To Endings:  This Canadian made movie stars Harvey Keitel in a story about three brothers who try to reverse a lifetime of mistakes after discovering that they only have a few days left to live.  This drama/comedy takes place in Niagara Falls, and is as touching as it is funny.

Conviction: This is another movie based on a true story , and it stars Hillary Swank and Sam Rockwell as a sister and her older brother who is convicted for murder and sentenced to life in prison in 1983.  It shows one woman’s dedication to her family as she becomes a lawyer and relentlessly pursues overturning the conviction.

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