January 23, 2017

TIFF ’10: Five unforgettable moments from this year’s fest


By Sean O’Connell
Hollywoodnews.com: This year’s Toronto International Film Festival surprised me on so many levels: quality of film; accessibility to events; friendliness of the TIFF volunteers and staff; even the weather, which gave attendees a taste of fall … even if we only experienced fresh air for a few minutes in between movie screenings.

I’m going to skip a traditional festival recap. Hopefully you enjoyed what you read over the last six days, and if you want to go back over my coverage of this year’s festival, just put TIFF in our search engine.

Also, I feel that no matter how much I managed to see and do at TIFF, I missed out on just as much. Toronto lives up to its nickname of “The People’s Festival” by offering such a full plate so as to satisfy all tastes. It’s overloaded with opportunities, which couldn’t be better for film junkies like myself.

There was a Cadillac commercial running before every TIFF screening that flashed images such as The Terminator robot, Sharon Stone in the interrogation chair for “Basic Instinct,” or Janet Leigh in the shower in “Psycho.” The message was that some things you see only once, but remember forever.

With that in mind, I wanted to list the five most memorable moments from my Toronto this year, both on screen and off. This isn’t my last TIFF piece. I still have a few unfinished articles and reviews to post, which I will later this week. But these five events are burned in my memory. They are spoiler-ish, to a certain extent. I’ll keep them vague, so as not to ruin any of the film’s mentioned. But when I look back on TIFF 2010, I’m always going to remember:

1. James Franco taking out his digital camera and snapping a photo after the fact in Danny Boyle’s empowering “127 Hours.”

2. Andrew Garfield of “Never Let Me Go” and “The Social Network” extending his arm and pointing his fingers to show me how he’s going to fire his webbing when he plays Spider-Man in Marc Webb’s sure-to-be blockbuster.

3. Natalie Portman spreading her wings, literally and metaphorically, in Darren Aronofsky’s harrowing “Black Swan.”

4. Kodi Smit-McPhee’s eyes welling with tears as the young boy asks his oblivious father if evil really exists in Matt Reeves’ “Let Me In.”

5. A defiant Rosamund Pike telling Paul Giamatti they “had” a life in Richard J. Lewis’ crowd-pleaser, “Barney’s Version.”

Thank you, TIFF, for another unforgettable festival.


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About Sean O'Connell

Sean O'Connell is a nationally recognized film critic. His reviews have been published in print ('The Washington Post,' 'USA Today') and online (AMC FilmCritic.com, MSN's Citysearch) since 1996. He's a weekly contributor to several national radio programs. He is a longstanding member of the Broadcast Film Critics Association (BFCA), the Online Film Critics Society (OFCS), and the Southeastern Film Critics View all articles by Sean O'Connell Association (SEFCA).

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