Wednesday, September 03, 2008


Here are my picks for the Toronto Film Festival (Sept. 4th-13th):

Stars: Zooey Deschanel and Paul Dano
Plot: Paul Dano (There Will Be Blood) plays a mattress salesman who falls in love with a girl (Deschanel) he meets at his store.

Star: Sally Hawkins (Cassandra's Dream and Persuasion)
Plot: It's the story of a girl who refuses to be sad about anything in a completely comical way.

Stars: Jennifer Anniston and Steve Zahn
Plot: "A traveling art saleswoman tries to shake off a flaky motel manager who falls for her and won't leave her alone."

Stars: Zack Efron (High School Musical), Claire Danes, James Tupper ("Men in Trees"), and Ben Chaplin (The Water Horse)
Plot: "A teenager is cast in the Mercury Theatre production of ;Julius Ceasar; directed by a young Orson Welles in 1937."

Stars: Susan Sarandon, Anton Yelchin (Charlie Bartlett), Eva Amurri (Saved!), Willa Holland ("The O.C.") and Justin Chatwin (The Invisible)
Plot: "An irresponsible mother blows her eldest daughter's college fund on her youngest daughter's modeling campaign." "Two teens from different sides of the tracks forge a partnership to seek freedom from their respectively miserable lives."

Stars: Kevin Zegers (Transamerica), Sophia Bush ("One Tree Hill"), and Monica Keena (Man of the House)
Plot: Based on Tim McLoughlin's novel Heart of the Old Country, it's about a 19-year-old Brooklyn guy named Mike (Zegers) who is torn between two worlds. When he gets a partial scholarship to NYU with his photography portfolio, he has to figure out how to balance his Italian neighborhood roots with the sophistication of the Lower East Side. Not only does he have to work for the local mob boss to pay off the rest of his tuition, but he's torn between two girls: a beautiful NYU intellect (Bush) and his long term girlfriend (Keena) that he promised to marry. "This compelling coming-of-age story combines suspense, murder and loyalty."

Stars: Shia Labeouf, Blake Lively, Rachel Bilson, Natalie Portman, Orlando Bloom, Anton Yelchin, Christina Ricci, Kevin Bacon, Maggie Q, Ethan Hawke, James Caan, Olivia Thirlby, Bradley Cooper, Drea de Mateo, and many more.
Plot: "An anthology film joining several love stories set in one of the most loved cities of the world, New York."

Star: My favorite Spaniard actor Alejo Sauras (La Habitacion de Fermat and "Los Serranos")
Plot: "A serial killer is loose at a medical school in Spain, and the police have no clue who is responsible for the carnage. Certainly, nobody suspects Bárbara (Macarena Gómez), a sexy, fashion-obsessed student with a hunger for blood that can't be satiated by what she gets in anatomy class. Killing has become a hobby for Bárbara, who would just as easily suffocate an unsatisfactory one-night stand as she would slice the throat of a peeping tom. Inspired by her favourite childhood toy, the Barbie-like Cindy Superstar and her plastic mate, Glen, Bárbara wants to find her perfect match, a hunk who would share her passion for bloodletting. She thinks her search has ended when she meets Tomás (César Camino), a hard-working student assigned to the morgue who spends most of his time slicing open cadavers. However, Tomás has secretly developed a brain-impulse decoder to cure migraines and inadvertently discovers that, with the added effect of a little ecstasy, he can see the final images from the brain of a corpse. Might his invention solve the mystery of the Campus Killer, putting an end to Bárbara's killing spree and her newfound love in one swoop?"

Star: Phillip Seymour Hoffman, Michelle Williams, Catherine Keener, Jennifer Jason Leigh
Plot: "A theater director (Hoffman) struggles with his work, and the women in his life, as he attempts to create a life-size replica of New York inside a warehouse as part of his new play" to impress his ex-wife (Keener).

Star: Joseph Gordon Levitt, Olivia Thirlby (Juno and The Wackness)
Plot: "A young couple, in love and facing a life-changing decision, find one seemingly ordinary July 4th cleaved in two by the flip of a coin on the Brooklyn Bridge."

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