In the third part of our TIFF 2012 preview, Brian McKechnie takes a look at Looper, Far Out Isn’t Far Enough, and Antiviral. Follow all of our TIFF 2012 coverage at criticizethis.ca/tiff.
Looper * Criticize This! TIFF Pick *
Director: Rian Johnson
It’s hard to talk about Looper without gushing over how much I loved it. From the writing and directing to the effects and acting, it’s one of those movies where everything just clicked and blew me away. The film stars Joseph Gordon-Levitt as Joe, a hitman working for the mob who kills people sent to him from the future. When his older self is sent (Bruce Willis), he’s caught off-guard and doesn’t pull the trigger. All hell breaks loose and he’s soon tracking himself down before his boss (Jeff Daniels in a role similar to that of Albert Brooks in Drive) catches him. Directed by Rian Johnson (Brick, The Brothers Bloom), the film is extremely stylish and cool with enough twists and turns to keep you on the edge of your seat. Emily Blunt also stars and gives one of her best performances to date.
Rating: ***** (out of 5 stars)
Thursday, September 6 at 6:30 p.m. at the Elgin (Visa Screening Room)
Thursday, September 6 at 8 p.m. at Roy Tomson Hall
Far Out Isn’t Far Enough * Criticize This! TIFF Pick *
Director: Brad Bernstein
Brad Bernstein’s Far Out Isn’t Far Enough is a beautifully crafted, mesmerizing documentary on artist and children’s book author Tomi Ungerer. Mixing interviews with Ungerer and his peers, such as Where the Wild Things Are? author Maurice Sendak, along with Ungerer’s artwork presented in an animated form, the film is an eye-opening, entertaining look at one of the most under-appreciated masters of the art world.
Rating: **** (out of 5 stars)
Thursday, September 6 at 9:45 p.m. at the TIFF Bell Lightbox
Saturday, September 8 at 9:30 a.m. at the Cineplex Yonge-Dundas
Saturday, September 15 at 4:30 p.m. at the Cineplex Yonge-Dundas
Director: Brandon Cronenberg
It’s obvious early on that Antiviral comes from the mind of David Cronenberg’s son, Brandon. The story and visuals are similar to that of David’s 1983 cult classic Videodrome, and there’s even hints of The Fly and Crash scattered throughout. That’s not a complete slam against Antiviral, as I did enjoy aspects of it, such as Caleb Landry Jones’ performance and the overall idea of people wanting to infect themselves with the same illnesses of their favourite celebrities. But in the end I longed to re-watch the work of Papa Cronenberg more than I cared for what I had just seen and was left disappointed. Brandon Cronenberg is a creative soul and it will be interesting to see what he comes up with next. Just don’t get your hopes up for Antiviral.
Rating: ** (out of 5 stars)
Monday, September 10 at 9 p.m. at the Ryerson Theatre
Wednesday, September 12 at 2:45 p.m. at the Bloor Hot Docs Cinema
TIFF 2012 runs from September 6 – 16. For more information, visit tiff.net.
Top image: A scene from Looper. Courtesy Alliance Films.