This past weekend the TIFF Bell Lightbox started its 4 week retrospective into the works of director Claire Denis with some of her earliest works, Chocolat, Beau Travail and No Fear, No Die. The retrospective continues into mid-November with more of the director’s works on display, but this weekend marks the biggest weekend for the retrospective as the Lightbox will be graced with the presence of the lady herself.
On Thursday October 17th, Denis will be live and in person at the Lightbox for the presentation of the Carte Blanche selection of Djibril Diop Mambéty’s Touki-Bouki, along with director Mati Diop whose short A Thousand Suns will precede the film. Then the following night, October 18th, Denis will introduce her latest film Bastards, which is currently finishing a regular theatrical run at the Lightbox this week. (more…)
Starting this weekend at the TIFF Bell Lightbox is the critically acclaimed story of the struggle for a better life and the perilous journey that happens along the way in “La Pirouge”. The tale of African refuges is a story that has rarely been seen on screens before and was a big sensation at last year’s Cannes film festival, even becoming a nominee for the ‘un certain regard’ jury prize.
Starring Souleymane Seye Ndiaye, Laïty Fall, Malaminé ‘Yalenguen’ Dramé
Written by Éric Névé, David Bouchet
Directed by Moussa Touré
Each year, thousands of people leave Africa in rickety boats to undertake the dangerous (and illegal) voyage to Europe in search of a better life for them and their families. Moussa Touré’s powerful and suspenseful drama focuses on Baye Laye (more…)
Starting this weekend at the TIFF Bell Lightbox is the new music documentary that unearths one of the most influential bands that almost nobody has ever heard of, “A Band Called Death”. The documentary boats executive producers Scott Mosier (friend and producer of Kevin Smith’s films) and Entourage’s Jerry Ferrara, which just goes to prove the vast and different influence their music has had. A band becoming a hit 30 years after recording your demo tape is a compelling and unique story, and one that has never been told on screen this way before.
A Band Called Death
Directed by Jeff Howlett, Mark Covino
Before Bad Brains, the Sex Pistols or even the Ramones, there was Death. Formed in the early 1970s by three teenage brothers from Detroit, Death is credited as being the first black punk band, and the Hackney brothers, David, Bobby, and Dannis, are now considered pioneers in their field. But it wasn’t until recently, when a dusty 1974 demo tape made its way out of Bobby’s attic nearly thirty years after Death’s emergence, that anyone outside a small group of punk enthusiasts had even heard of them. Equal parts electrifying rockumentary and epic family chronicle, the story of Death is one of brotherly love and fierce, divinely inspired expression.
Starting this weekend at the TIFF Bell Lightbox is the critically acclaimed Icelandic film that made the Oscar shortlist for best foreign language film at last year’s ceremony, “The Deep”. The film comes from director Baltasar Kormákur, the director of the Mark Whalberg starring “Contraband” and “2 Guns” and features a stellar lead performance from one of Iceland’s best actors, Ólafur Darri Ólafsson.
Starring: Ólafur Darri Ólafsson, Jóhann G. Jóhannsson, Þorbjörg Helga Þorgilsdóttir, Stefán Hallur Stefánsson
Written by: Jón Atli Jónasson, Baltasar Kormákur
Directed by Baltasar Kormákur
In 1984, a fishing boat goes down miles off the coast of Iceland’s Westman Islands in some of the most forbidding seas on the planet, leaving the fishermen at the mercy of frigid and turbulent waters. Miraculously, one of the crew Gulli (Ólafsson) manages to survive, (more…)
The TIFF Bell Lightbox takes a step back to the low fi days of computer programming starting this weekend with the underwhelming “Computer Chess”. The surreal and subdued comedy strives to obtain the levels of classic Christopher Guest productions in its quirkiness of world building, but the question becomes is it witty and engaging enough to earn that comparison?
Starring: Wiley Wiggins, Patrick Riester, Freddy Martinez, Myles Paige
Written and Directed by Andrew Bujalski
Set over the course of a weekend tournament for chess software programmers thirty-some years ago, Computer Chess transports viewers to a nostalgic moment when the contest between technology and the human spirit seemed a little more up for grabs. (more…)
Starting this week at the TIFF Bell Lightbox is the documentary that caused quite the splash at this year’s Hot Docs film festival, “Blackfish”. When director Gabriela Cowperthwaite began investigating the death of a trainer who was dragged to her death during a “Dine with Shamu” show at SeaWorld, she soon found the initial story gave way to a far more shocking and further-reaching situation that plumbed the depths of a billion-dollar industry.
Directed by Gabriela Cowperthwaite
A killer whale linked to three trainer deaths over two decades, Tilikum is the backbone of the story presented in Blackfish. However, Cowperthwaite discovered it wasn’t just this particular whale; there have been multiple cases of Orca attacks on trainers in parks around the world, although never in the wild. Featuring testimonies from experts and trainers, and with never-before-seen footage, (more…)
Starting today at the TIFF Bell Lightbox and running through the rest of the summer is the new series based on the resurgence of the raunchy American comedy that was launched back in the 70’s by the now classic National Lampoon’s Animal House, ‘TOGA! The Reinvention of American Comedy’. Filled with special guests and screenings, the series promises to be one of the most hilarious set of films the Lightbox has managed to group together.
TOGA! The Reinvention of American Comedy
Running July 17th – Aug 29th 2013 at the TIFF Bell Lightbox
In 1978 a film was launched into theaters that combined the growing movement of improv comedy, the likes of Saturday Night Live and comedy troupes like the Groundlings, emerging director John Landis and the National Lampoon humor magazine entitled National Lampoon’s Animal House. The film went on to shatter box-office records and drag R-rated comedy from its b-movie drive in origins into the mainstream. The film also made “Toga! Toga!” into a generational rallying cry and served as inspiration for many a college drinking night. This film series will screen 27 rude, crude and brilliant movies that changed the face of modern American comedy, all of which owe at least in part a huge debt to Landis’ ground-breaking comedy.