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TORONTO FILM FESTIVAL Day 2 Capsule Reviews: “Snowden,” “American Pastoral” & “Carrie Pilby”

Posted September 9, 2016 by Mitch Salem

  SNOWDEN (Open Road – Sept 16):  Oliver Stone’s return to politically-charged biography is subdued by the standards of his Nixon or W.  It’s a hagiography that follows the character arc of his Born of the Fourth of July (true believer finds his ideals crushed by political reality and transforms into a revolutionary agent against […]

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SHOWBUZZDAILY @ TORONTO: “Anna Karenina”

Posted September 8, 2012 by Mitch Salem

  ANNA KARENINA – Watch It At Home – Beautiful But Overconceptualized Version of the Tolstoy Classic Joe Wright was introduced to the world with his film of Pride and Prejudice, and it seems like he’s been trying to escape the pigeonhole of staid Literary Classics director ever since. His Atonement, while based on another celebrated novel, […]

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THE BIJOU @ TIFF: “Rampart”

Posted September 13, 2011 by Mitch Salem

> Oren Moverman’s first film as a director, The Messenger, was a beautifully contained, emotionally detailed story about soldiers assigned to deliver tragic news to the families of the deceased.  In his new film RAMPART, which premiered at the Toronto Film Festival, Moverman is more ambitious and, unfortunately, a victim of the sophomore jinx. This […]

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THE BIJOU @ TIFF: “Butter”

Posted September 16, 2011 by Mitch Salem

> Jim Field Smith’s comedy BUTTER, which premiered at the Toronto Film Festival, ambitiously makes a play for both the heartwarming indie Little Miss Sunshine audience and the satire-minded Election crowd.  That may be one play too many, but the movie is worth seeing anyway. Jason A Micallef’s first produced script is set in the […]

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SHOWBUZZDAILY @ TORONTO:: “Iceman”

Posted September 11, 2012 by Mitch Salem

Michael Shannon is brilliant in ICEMAN, but it has to be said that he’s brilliant in just about the same way that he was in Take Shelter, in Revolutionary Road, on Boardwalk Empire, and even in The Runaways (although at least there he got to be funny).  For an actor who only became known to a wide audience 3 years ago […]

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SHOWBUZZDAILY @ TORONTO: “Writers”

Posted September 12, 2012 by Mitch Salem

  WRITERS is considered an “independent” movie because it was made without big-studio financing and because its stars (Greg Kinnear, Jennifer Connelly, Kristen Bell) are familiar faces, but not at the level that sell tickets strictly on the basis of their names.  Beyond those business considerations, though, Josh Boone’s debut feature is as safe and predictable […]

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SHOWBUZZDAILY @ TORONTO: “Frances Ha” & “Imogene”

Posted September 8, 2012 by Mitch Salem

  One of the things that happens at film festivals is that as you see many films in back-to-back proximity, mini-trends start to emerge, at least in the mind, and pictures that were made entirely separately, and which may well end up released months apart from each other, seem to be in direct competition.  So […]

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THE BIJOU @ TIFF: Midnight Madness – “The Incident”

Posted September 15, 2011 by Mitch Salem

> As has been reported, there really was an ambulance outside the Ryerson Theatre in Toronto after the midnight premiere of Alexandre Courtes’ THE INCIDENT, there to rescue at least one person who had fainted during the movie.  Of course, this may just mean that Toronto Film Festival patrons have delicate sensibilities–an idea supported by […]

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