A lot of people (mostly politicians and Telefilm leeches) try to define Canadian cinema. We imagine them in some war room in Ottawa drawing up cross-cultural Venn diagrams, sipping their Double Doubles, gyrating to Rush.
Here’s the thing: Canadian cinema is the cinema Canadians make. It doesn’t need to be defined. It just is. This country has an armoury of amazing filmmakers who — when given space and respect — make films that can’t help but be uniquely Canadian. And this is why we’re thrilled that TIFF has released its 2012 Canadian lineup.
Below we list some of the films we're most looking forward to.
Laurence Anyways, Xavier Dolan
Set in 1990s Montreal, the films tells the story of a man who undergoes a sex change while trying to stay with his girlfriend, Fred. It is an exploration of relationships and their fragility in the face of internal and external pressures. Taking place over ten years, Laurence is a product of 23-year-old Dolan’s evolving ambition. The director embodies a new generation of Quebecois filmmaking — one loaded with bravura, yet removed from overt politics.
Stories We Tell, Sarah Polley
In this new documentary, Polley interviews a family of storytellers, digging into their rich history while drawing contradictory answers to the same questions. The film explores ideas of truth, memory, and shared experience. Still glowing in the success of last year’s TIFF favourite Take This Waltz, Polley has emerged as one of Canada’s most gifted filmmakers. We’re intrigued to see how her confident yet sensitive voice translates to a medium where the director is more muted.
Krivina, Igor Drljaca
Showcased within this year's Discovery programme, Krivina is the debut feature of Torontonian-cum-Bosnian Drljaca. The film focuses on Miro, an immigrant of former Yugoslavia now living in Toronto. He returns to Sarajevo to find his missing pre-war friend, now wanted for war crimes. Set under the lingering spectre of the Yugoslav Wars, Krivina will surely be an intensely personal work.
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