January 05, 2011

2010 Calgary International Film Festival

The Calgary International Film Festival (CIFF) ended for another year (ok, I started this post back in October) and I managed to see 17 movies in 7 days. I rated the movies on a system using 1 to 5 and I saw some in every category! But my top five movies were:

A mother's last wishes send twins Jeanne and Simon on a journey to Middle East in search of their tangled roots. Adapted from Wajdi Mouawad's acclaimed play, Incendies tells the powerful and moving tale of two young adults' voyage to the core of deep-rooted hatred, never-ending wars and enduring love. This is Canada's entry in the Foreign Film category at the Oscars this year. I considered this a perfect film with its storytelling and emotional pull.

Black comedy filled with deadpan humour and unlikely scenarios, this absurdist comic adventure is in the vein of Romancing The Stone. Filmed in Indonesia, it involves a frantic chase scene through the jungle with outstanding performances and incredible cinematography.

Certified Copy is a French drama film by Iranian writer and director Abbas Kiarostami, starring Juliette Binoche and the British opera singer William Shimell, in his first film role. The story is set in Tuscany and focuses on a French antiques dealer, who spends a day with the writer of a recently-published book on the value of copies in art. This movie requires intense concentration to unravel clues you don't even know you are getting.

When wealthy patriarch Frederick refuses to attend the funeral of his firstborn son, other family members can't stomach his decision. What could possibly drive a loving father to absent himself from such an occasion? As his gesture sends shockwaves through the extended family, the most buried elements of Frederick's past stand to be revealed.

The Illusionist details the story of a dying breed of stage entertainer whose thunder is being stolen by emerging rock stars. Forced to accept increasingly obscure assignments in fringe theaters, garden parties and bars, he meets a young fan who changes his life forever. I was initially interested in this animated film because it is by Sylvain Chomet, director of the much-loved Triplettes Of Belleville, and incorporated an unproduced script by Jacques Tati. I was not disappointed!

So far only The Illusionist has shown up in Calgary theatres - I expect to see more in the new year.

1 comment:

Lesley Turner said...

thanks for this post. i always value your recommendations.

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