Toronto is the king of the fall festivals, with a lineup of 285 features and 108 shorts. Here are 25 films that are must-seees…
WILD – Jean-Marc Vallee directed Matthew McConaughey to an Oscar in last year’s Toronto drama “Dallas Buyers Club,” and now he’s made Reese Witherspoon a real contender for “Wild,” based on the Cheryl Strayed memoir.
MISS JULIE –Jessica Chastain and Colin Farrell star in “Miss Julie,” an adaptation of the Strindberg drama from actress-turned-director Liv Ullman.
James Marsh’s “The Theory of Everything” stars Eddie Redmayne as Stephen Hawking and Felicity Jones as his wife Jane.
Joshua Oppenheimer won an Oscar nomination for his chilling documentary about the Indonesian genocide, “The Act of Killing” — and his new film, “The Look of Silence,” tells another side of the same story.
Here’s what Jon Stewart did on his summer vacation from “The Daily Show” last year: He directed Gael Garcia Bernal in the true-life, Iran-set drama “Rosewater.”
Bill Murray makes a rare appearance in Theodore Melfi’s “St. Vincent” as a cranky old man who becomes a reluctant companion to Melissa McCarthy’s son.
Jason Reitman brings most of his films to his hometown of Toronto, and his cross-generational drama “Men, Women & Children” will premiere in his favorite theater, the Ryerson.
Benedict Cumberbatch won immediate Oscar buzz when Morten Tyldum’s World War II drama “The Imitation Game,” about the man who broke the German Enigma code but was persecuted for being gay, premiered in Telluride.
Toronto’s opening night film, David Dobkin’s “The Judge,” boasts the powerhouse acting combo of Robert Downey, Jr. and Robert Duvall.
Martin Scorsese isn’t touring the mean streets with “The 50 Year Argument” — instead, he and co-director David Tedeschi have made a documentary about the New York Review of Books.
Chris Rock wrote, directed and starred in “Top Five,” in which he plays a New York comic coming to terms with his life.
Paul Dano and John Cusak play the troubled Beach Boys mastermind Brian Wilson at different ages in Bill Pohlad’s “Love and Mercy.”
Brit Simon Pegg has two films in Toronto — “Hector and the Search for Happiness” (not pictured) and the cartoonishly brutal and funny “Kill Me Three Times,” where he plays an implacable hitman.
Octavia Spencer and Kevin Costner are in a custody battle in Mike Binder’s “Black and White,” based on experiences from the director’s life.
Director Noah Baumbach (“Frances Ha”) has recruited Ben Stiller and Naomi Watts to star in “While We’re Young” as a middle-aged couple whose marriage is tested when they meet a younger couple.
The business of providing naysayers on issues like climate change is uncovered by “Food, Inc.” director Robert Kenner in “Merchants of Doubt.”
“The Messenger” director Oren Moverman’s “Time Out of Mind” stars Richard Gere as a homeless man trying to reconnect with his daughter.
Liev Schreiber plays Boris Spassky and Tobey Maguire is Bobby Fischer in Ed Zwick’s “Pawn Sacrifice,” a film about their epic chess match.
“An Education” director Lone Scherfig examines the class system at Oxford in “The Riot Club,” about two new recruits joining a raucous upper-crust club.
Kevin Smith should be right at home in TIFF’s Midnight Madness section with “Tusk,” a dark comedy about a podcast host slowly going crazy.
Jennifer Aniston has a chance to show off her dramatic chops in “Cake,” in which she plays a member of a chronic-pain support group investigating the suicide of a fellow member (Anna Kendrick).
Belgian director Michael Roskam became a hot property after his Oscar-nominated “Bullhead,” and he’s made his English-language debut with “The Drop,” featuring Tom Hardy and, in his final screen appearance, James Gandolfini.
Irish director Tomm Moore won a surprise Oscar nomination for “The Secret of Kells” in 2010, and he’s back using hand-drawn animation to illustrate Irish myths in “Song of the Sea.”
“Electric Boogaloo: The Wild, Untold Story of Cannon Films” is the second documentary to examine the freewheeling ’80s studio known for action flicks.
Two TIFF films are based on the same Flaubert book: Sophie Barthes’ period drama “Madame Bovary,” with Mia Wasikowska, and Anne Fontaine’s modern-day “Gemma Bovery,” with Gemma Arterton.
“Utopia” (Fox), Sept. 7 at 8/7c Pioneers will begin a new civilization off-the-grid in Southern California, where they will live, survive and — hopefully — thrive for a full calendar year. Fox will live-stream the happenings around-the-clock.
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Host/Producer/FilmCritic,Carla Renata is a member of such esteemed organizations as Critics Choice Association (Co-President Documentary Branch), African American Film Critics Association, Online Association of Female Film Critics and Alliance of Women Film Journalists. My op-eds or features have been seen in VARIETY, RogerEbert.com, Maltin on Movies, The Cherry Picks, IGN Movies, as well as being a frequent Guest Contributor to Fox 11-LA, Good Day LA, ET Live!, Turner Classic Movies, KCRW Press Play with Madeline Brand, The Cherry Picks, The Stream Team (Beond TV) ITV, Fox Soul's The Black Report, The ListTV and more.
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