TIFF ’15: Highlights from Short Cuts Programme 3

Posted in Festival Coverage, TIFF 2015 by - September 12, 2015
TIFF ’15: Highlights from Short Cuts Programme 3

Short Cuts Programme 3 – A collection of films that deal with change, which is the only constant in this programme. It includes stories of changing circumstances, transformative realizations and many other moments that turn lives upside down.

Bacon & God’s Wrath
Dir. Sol Friedman

A 90 year old Jewish woman, Razie, reflects on her life’s experiences as she prepares to try bacon for the first time. In this endearing and playful mixed-media docu-collage, Razie’s discovery of “the Google” leads her to a reckoning with her lifelong Jewish faith.

A creative and endearing look at Razie and her musings about safety and loyalty (to parents/to religion), and how these can stunt a person’s growth. Her finding “the internet” opens the world to her; she begins to think about how “it would be nice to have a bacon & tomato sandwich.” 

After having the world at her fingertips, essentially, it became difficult to believe such nonsense [about religion] anymore; something shifted. Over time, Razie understood that “faith is belief without evidence… it’s courageous to choose the truth even if it means abandoning what you know.” Her introspections about her life; about how she became fascinated by “the Google” and found “that feeling of connectedness” are such a delight to hear. 

Friedman’s approach makes this a visually entertaining film. The animation adds an extra layer within which Razie’s story unfolds. Well done.

Rating 4/5

Immortal_Joe_Frame_60

The Ballad Of Immortal Joe
Dir. Hector Herrera

A two-fisted tale of ill-fated romance and six-gun justice gets a supernatural twist in this animated homage to the cowboy poetry of Robert W. Service. Narrated by Kenneth Welsh along with music by The Sadies for its score, the film contains vivid vistas of lonesome prairies and desperate men.

Herrera and team do an outstanding job in this romantic Western. Great visuals with lush colours and rhyme. Yes rhyme! There is a lot of great talent in this one short film. The story is also one that puts things in perspective, if you will… “until you walk a mile in his shoes” says the lonely Immortal Joe.

Rating 4/5

Semele
Dir. Myrsini Aristidou

Semele will do anything to spend time with her long absent father. A school note becomes the excuse for her to visit him at his workplace, where her presence highlights their fragile relationship.

A very poignant story about broken parent-child relationships. Both Yiannis Stankoglou (father) and Vasiliki Kokkoliadi (Semele) play these damaged characters very well. Semele is desperate to have some quality time with her father; a simple caress or hug would do. This intimate portrayal does not depict a perfect reunion, but it certainly highlights a child’s need for caring. The same can be said of the father, the grown-up in this case. So much happens in this short time. Definitely very moving. Good length for this film; as well as, good production.

Rating 3/5

Screens

SAT SEP 12 7:00pm at Scotiabank Theatre Scotiabank 10
FRI SEP 18 9:00pm at Scotiabank Theatre Scotiabank 11

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Heidy has a love of fine art history, films, books, world issues, music and science, leading her to share her adventures on her website (www.hyemusings.ca) , and as a contributor at other outlets. She loves sharing the many happenings in Toronto and hopes people will go out and support the arts in any fashion possible.
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