Thursday, September 23, 2010

Tiff Favourites

Cory and I saw 4 films at Tiff this year. 1 weird, 1 simple and 2 awesome.

Our top favs were from total opposites of the film spectrum.

On Saturday afternoon we saw the Butcher, the Chef and the Swordsman. I picked this film because I thought Rich would love a typical Chinese kung-foo film. Well Rich couldn't make it and it was not your typical kung-fu movie.

The Butcher, the Chef and the Swordsman is a collection of three stories tied together by a a hunk of evil possessed metal. Sounds scary, right? Not at all. There was music, singing, dancing, comedy and cooking...loads of delicious Chinese food incredibly prepared.

This quote from Tiff says it best:

The Butcher, the Chef and the Swordsman is a buffet of action, comedy and oh-so-teasing food footage. Wuershan serves up a delectable visual parade of outrageous cross-cultural mash-ups, including a hip-hop singing brothel madam, karaoke, animated vignettes, vintage kung fu flashbacks, television news re-enactments and combat that quickly transforms into a Mortal Kombat-esque fighting game.

Then on Sunday morning we saw Tabloid by Errol Morris. I fell in love with Errol Morris many festivals ago when I saw Fog Of War. There's something so captivating about his documentaries. People tell all without flinching. They reveal everything about themselves and never for a moment think twice.

In Tabloid, he tells the story of Joyce, a former beauty pageant queen, a call girl, a Mormon savior, a woman with many disguises, a dog cloner... Her story is crazy! And it's all true, or is it? If you rely on newspapers, photos, interviews - well you're not sure what to believe.

In a director’s statement, Morris writes, “Tabloid is a return to my favorite genre – sick, sad and funny, but, of course, it’s more than that. It is a meditation on how we are shaped by the media and even more powerfully, by ourselves. Joyce is a woman profoundly influenced by her dreams and, in a sense, she was living in a movie long before she came to star in my film.”

For me, both films were perfectly crafted with loads of lovely details, like the food in the Butcher... or the newspaper style supers in Tabloid. Both movies made us laugh and cry and love going to the movies. That's why we just signed up for Hot Docs!