TIFF 2017: Our Highlights from Short Cuts Programme 1

Posted in Festival Coverage, Movies, TIFF 2017 by - September 12, 2017
TIFF 2017: Our Highlights from Short Cuts Programme 1

Dir. Yassmina Karajah

A trip to find a specific pool proves to be a quiet an emotional journey four Arabic youth new to Canada. In her touching film Rupture, director Yassmina Karajah uses a seemingly simple journey to highlight the persistent struggles that many immigrants face. One of the biggest hurdles being the vulnerability that comes with not speaking the language. Through her cast of first-time actors Karajah effectively points out that a new land does not erase the horrors of the past. The terrible things these young people have witness, and the atrocities still being inflicted on loved ones left behind, weigh heavily on their minds. Rupture is a moving tale of resilience and adolescence.

Dir. Torill Kove

Academy-award winner Torill Kove returns with yet another magical animated work in Threads. Set in a world where threads dangling from the sky, Kove creates a wonderful visual metaphor for human connection. The film revels in the bonds that not only shape us from young age, but stay with us long after we set out to forge our own paths. Threads is another delightful crowd-pleaser that proves Torill Kove is one of the best filmmakers working in animation today.

Everlasting Mom
Elinor Nechemya

Elegance and affluence meets tales of femininity in Elinor Nechemya’s Everlasting Mom. Over the course of film, the audience watches as a regal woman puts on makeup, gazes upon her scenic view, and sets the table with her best fine china. Through all of this we hear tales of women whose fears, desire for independence and choices serve as an interesting juxtaposition to the images on display. While the themes sometimes get muddle with the avant-garde structure, there is more than enough here to keep one’s interest nonetheless.

An Imagined Conversation: Kanye West & Stephen Hawking
Dir. Sol Friedman

Any time a Sol Friedman film is playing a festival it immediately becomes a must-see. His latest work is no exception. A hilarious smorgasbord of pop culture references, Friedman imagines a conversation between musician, and self-proclaimed genius, Kanye West and theoretical physicist Stephen Hawking. Through a discussion that touches on everything from Drake to Wikipedia to the meaning of life, the film turns a potential one-note premise into a richly comedic tale. An Imagined Conversation: Kanye West & Stephen Hawking is one of the funniest films you will see at the festival.

Bickford Park
Dir. Linsey Stewart & Dane Clark

The directing duo that brought us both Long Branch and I Put a Hit on You are back with another engaging work in Bickford Park. Liane Balaban (New Waterford Girl, Meditation Park also screening at the festival) plays Jill, a 35-year-old wife who finds herself drawn to a local teenage skateboarder when her husband begins to take her for granted. As Jill begins to take skateboard lessons from the handsome teen, Stewart and Clark remind the viewer that we can never truly runaway from our problems. Sometimes the path we take to avoid issues are the ones that inadvertently lead us directly to confronting them. Charming from beginning to end, Bickford Park is another strong entry into Stewart and Clark’s growing canon of films.

Magic Moments
Dir. Martina Buchelová

A teenager finds herself in several complicated adult situations when she is left to care for her younger sister as her parents work long hours in other cities. Buchelová’s film offers an interesting portrait of a generation of youth who are, due to the economic circumstances of their parent, forced to navigate the world on their own, and making poor decisions in the process. Anchored by a strong performances by her young lead, Buchelová presents a coming of age tale that truly feels authentic.

Thursday, September 14, 6:30 PM, Scotiabank 10

This post was written by
Courtney is a Rotten Tomatoes approved critic and the founder of Cinema Axis. He can frequently be heard discussing film as co-host of Frameline on Radio Regent. Courtney has contributed to several publications including Leornard Maltin, That Shelf, Black Girl Nerds, and Comix Asylum Magazine. He also celebrates diversity in cinema as co-hosts of the Changing Reels podcast and is a member of the Online Film Critics Society.
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