Faulhaber Communications

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As summer draws to an end and the masses prepare for back-to-school, some of us prepare instead for the most exciting time in Toronto for movie-lovers: The Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF). For ten glorious days this September, a niche group of Torontonians will be seeing some of the best cinema of the year, rub shoulders with top celebrities and make their way down red carpets across the downtown core. The parties are one side of TIFF that Faulhaber knows very well; from working front of house on A-list guestlists, to gifting Hollywood celebs with client swag, to attending some of the fantastic soirées thrown by the city’s top brands. The other side of the festival is the one focused on the films themselves; TIFF is one of the leading film festivals in the world, screening more than 300 films from 60+ countries. We researched the films coming to TIFF this year, watched 80+ movie trailers and broken down Faulhaber’s picks on what to watch.

There are always some very high profile Oscar hopefuls debuted at the festival we recommend waiting to see some of these as they are guaranteed to be in regular theatres soon after. Alfonso Cuaron’s IMAX 3D Gravity, starring George Clooney and Sandra Bullock, is destined to evoke major audience reactions and can also be seen later this October. The all-star cast of August: Osage County, based on Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Tracy Letts’s award-winning story, will likely spotlight Julia Roberts and Meryl Strep in awards season and is likely to go mainstream once it hits theatres. TIFF’s opening night selection The Fifth Estate starring Benedict Cumberbatch, who makes a few TIFF appearances this year, is creating tons of buzz for the intriguing story of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange. While all of these films are destined for acclaim, we recommend seeing some of the less popular, TIFF experience films.

One of this year’s major themes highlights top actors we’ve lost in the past year. One of James Gandolfini’s final films Enough Said will premiere at TIFF and looks smart, witty and makes our list of what to watch. The late Cory Monteith stars in drama/thriller McCanick and comedy All the Wrong Reasons, both premiering at TIFF.

This season is not lacking in the epic drama genre. Acclaimed director Steve McQueen debuts the true life film 12 Years a Slave starring Chiwetel Ejiofor. Renowned British actor Idris Elba stars in an adaptation of Nelson Mandela’s autobiography Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom. Both films are stacked with award-winning actors and emotional plot twists. Montreal director Denis Villeneuve showcases two films at TIFF, both starring Jake Gyllenhaal. Prisoners, also starring Hugh Jackman, is a tragic story about a kidnapping and Enemy tells the tale of a man who meets his exact double.

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If you want to see something really special, we highly recommend the historical and artistically filmed MARY Queen of Scots, a film about the monarch who lost everything. Lastly, we have to mention our personal favourite, Don Jon. Yes, this film will be in theatres shortly after TIFF but personally, we need to see the debut of Joseph Gordon-Levitt’s comedy as soon as possible! This is JGL’s first film where he wrote, directed and starred did we mention he buffed up a bit for the role? JGL and Scar-Jo make a cute New Jersey couple and comedy ensues.

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