Weekend at TIFF

Sep 11, 2016 by Kristin Morris on The Nickelodeon Blog

This weekend I caught some great films and also got to walk around Toronto for a little while. I also had some great tacos, but let’s talk about the films.

Kicked off Saturday morning early with the screening of Colossal with Anne Hathaway, Jason Sudeikis and Dan Stevens. Hathaway plays an unemployed dependent with self-control issues who leaves NYC where she lives for free in her boyfriend’s (Stevens) house to live in her small hometown. She almost immediately runs into her middle school best friend who now runs a local bar, played by Sudeikis. Sounds like a normal story line BUT THEN there’s something completely out of left field. It’s funny and weird and I really enjoyed it.


After that I changed gears entirely and saw the Cuban directed Santa & Andres by Carlos Lechuga. Set in Cuba in 1983, we see the story of Santa, a young revolutionary woman, and Andres who is a gay writer who has been labeled a dissident by the government. Santa is instructed to watch Andres for three days and the two strike up an odd an improbable friendship. I really enjoyed this story, but I wish I was more knowledgable about the time period in Cuba. It’s a beautiful story of art and writing as protest with a great performance by both of the lead actors (Lola Amores and Eduardo Martínez). 


After those films on Saturday I walked around with my mom (who is traveling with me) and we walked around the festival area and some other parts of Toronto.


Sunday had two more films! First was Queen of Katwe by Mira Nair, and starring Lupita Nyong’o and David Oyelowo. The film tells the story of a young Ugandan woman who was a chess prodigy. This is presented by Disney and is very entertaining. The performances from not just the starring actors, but the entire cast of children is fantastic and really fun.

David Oyelowo is Robert Katende and Madina Nalwanga is Phiona Mutesi in Disney's QUEEN OF KATWE, the vibrant true story of a young girl from the streets of rural Uganda whose world rapidly changes when she is introduced to the game of chess.

I tried to get into see Moonlight, but just barely missed the cut off for the line (it was at capacity) so I quickly chose to go see The Journey by Nick Hamm instead. It’s a fictional telling of the story of how two political leaders in Northern Ireland came to peace in 2006. While the dialogue and moments of humor were enjoyable, it was difficult to really buy into this one mainly because, well, its fictional.


I’ve got another packed schedule for tomorrow. Eye rest!