Toronto 2008

  • Brandon Wee


HIGHLIGHTS FROM THE TORONTO INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL 2008 Reflecting tough economic times, Toronto's 33rd annual edition presented a leaner program, substituting less films with multiple screenings as a trade off. Yet, this didn't deter criticism that the festival has gone to the dogs, with at least one local tabloid observer accusing it of elitism. Among this year's programme highlights: a stellar selection of Japanese titles represented across the festival's several sections, and a rare screening of a Lino Brocka film. Less compelling was the festival's inaugural commitment to the cinemas of Southeast Asia, for none of this year's representative Filipino and Thai titles were remarkable. Elsewhere however, there were exceptions: Achilles and the Tortoise (Kitano Takeshi, Japan 2008) Opening with a dramatic first act about Machisu, a boy whose dreams of being a painter are thwarted by the death of his rich parents, Kitano Takeshi's latest film then...