Emotional Arithmetic (2007)
Published last year by House of Anansi Press, "Outlander" tells the tale of a 19-year-old woman struggling to survive in the Canadian wilderness while being pursued by her late husband's brothers who are seeking revenge for his murder.
Xingu's most recent feature, "Moon," a sci-fi tale starring Sam Rockwell, was released last month by Sony Pictures Classics. Toronto-based Strada recently produced "Fugitive Pieces" with Serendipity Point Films. Triptych's credits include "Emotional Arithmetic," starring Susan Sarandon and Gabriel Byrne.
The big film this year might just be another chance to see Waltz with Bashir on the big screen. Some feel this was the best animated film of 2008 … yes, even better than Wall-e. Others think it was the top documentary.
Here’s a complete list of films … each is single admission.
April 16 Thur 7 Pm
Max, Minsky And Me
Director: Anna Justice
Nelly, a precocious 12-year-old, lives in Berlin with her German Christian dad and American Jewish mom, who is very eager for Nelly to crack down on her bat mitzvah studies. But her twin obsessions—astronomy and her distant fantasy heartthrob, 16-year-old Edouard, Prince of Luxembourg and fellow stargazer—occupy all of her time. Nor is she much interested in the simple-minded girls’ basketball team, which fills the lives of her schoolmates.
The spunky babe will be rubbing shoulders with Hollywood biggies like Susan Sarandon and Ellen Burstyn who have been nominated for ‘Emotional Arithmetic’.
In the category of best pictures, Pilon's film will be up against "Amal", "Normal", "Passchendaele" and "Everything Is Fine". Meanwhile, for the best original screenplay title, it placed Bernard Emond in competition with Deepa Mehta of "Heaven on Earth", Travis McDonald of "Normal", Randall Cole of "Real Time" and Guillaume Vigneault of "Everything Is Fine".
While "The Necessities of Life" took the most nominations, "Fugitive Pieces", the Samuel Goldwyn Films drama based on best-selling novel by Canadian poet Anne Michaels grabbed six nods. Some of the
- The closing film of last September's Toronto Film Festival is set for its Canadian theatrical bow (this has yet to be picked up for domestic distribution south of the Canadian border) - we've got your first look at Paolo BarzmanPaolo Barzman
SAN SEBASTIAN, Spain -- Emotional Arithmetic from director Paolo Barzman, better known for helming episodic TV, is a theatrical melodrama that tries to reflect on the weight of history. It does not bring anything new to the notion that destiny can affect people's lives or prevent them from reaching happiness. Nor does it bring anything new to the genre of melodrama. Despite a global starry cast that includes Susan Sarandon, Gabriel Byrne, Max von Sydow and Christopher Plummer, the film -- a rehash of Holocaust themes -- has only limited potential in art houses.
Melanie Lansing Winters (Sarandon) is happily married, or so she thinks, to David (Plummer). They live together with a son in a nice house by a lake in Quebec. A visit by two special guests, Jakob and Christopher, will affect her life more than she would have imagined. She knew both during World War II, when she was deported as a child to the concentration camp of Drancy, France. She owes Jakob (Von Sydow) her life and has cherished the memory of her encounter with Christopher (Byrne).
The film is designed like a stage play. It hardly leaves the house or garden; most sequences bring together two or three of the characters who reveal their past stories to the audience in a classical albeit tedious path toward a climax. A few flashbacks show the encounter of Melanie and Christopher as children, and how Jakob, the Russian poet, helped them to survive. All the revelations made by the characters in the heavy dialogue, underlined by portentous camera movements.
The photography tries hard to take advantage of the autumn colors of Quebec, but it merely adds pointless romanticism. There was, indeed, material here for a subtle melodrama in this reunion of past lovers who realize their lives could have been different. Instead, all we witness are characters shouting at each other now that it is too late to change anything.
Triptych Media, DS Prods., Telefilm Canada
Director: Paolo Barzman
Screenwriter: Jefferson Lewis
Based on the novel by: Matt Cohen
Producers: Suzanne Girard, Anna Stratton
Executive producers: Paolo Barzman, Robin Cass
Director of photography: Luc Montpellier
Production designer: Jean-Francois Campeau
Music: Normand Corbeil
Costume designer: Nicoletta Massone
Editor: Arthur Tarnowski
Melanie Lansing Winters: Susan Sarandon
Christopher Lewis: Gabriel Byrne
Jakob Bronski: Max von Sydow
David Winters: Christopher Plummer
Benjamin Winters: Roy Dupuis
Timmy Winters: Dakota Goyo
Young Melanie: Regan Jewitt
Young Christopher: Alexandre Nachi
Running time -- 100 minutes
No MPAA rating
- The final tally and full list of films presented at this year's Tiff have been announced today and hardcore cinephiles will have many options available to them out of the 261 film selected. With a massive slate comes massive headache. What to choose? Where to begin? I’ll be examining the selections – and hopeful offer you readers some cool coverage on films that won't be popping into theaters weeks and/or months from now. Our provisional coverage begins with preview pages listed below - simply click on the links for more info (we'll be updating the list daily) - and hopefully will have every angle covered. Galas: "Across the Universe," Julie TaymorJulie Taymor
TORONTO -- The Toronto International Film Festival is likely to be a highly charged poker game, with plenty of wild cards in play.
A possible actors strike next summer could dry up indie slates. Distributors still are absorbing films that they acquired during January's unexpected buyer frenzy at the Sundance Film Festival. New distributors with deep pockets are entering the market. And few, if any, Oscar contenders have emerged so far, adding to the pressure for the fall awards hopefuls to deliver the goods.
All these factors could impact the annual north-of-the-border festival.
"The mood is panic", TIFF director Noah Cowan said Wednesday on the eve of the festival. "There are a lot of important movies that people are eager to see."
He estimated that this year's lineup contains about 40 movies with Oscar potential, plus 10 likely candidates for U.S. acquisition and another 10 prestige titles likely to find international buyers.
Although Cowan and TIFF Sales and Industry Office head Giulia Filippelli take pains to insist that Toronto isn't a market, the fest is making itself more buyer-friendly. Last year's debut of 15 extra buyers-only screenings has been replaced with an extra 31 "priority press screenings." Only buyers and a select number of media members with a soon-to-be-coveted "P" on their badges are allowed in these showings until 15 minutes before they start, when the gates are opened for all press and industry who can be accommodated.
The extra screenings, which average four a day, would appear to be a compromise with critics who felt the extra buyers-only screenings were too insular and exclusionary, while providing a top-tier alternative for line-dreading buyers jumping from theater to theater for select titles.
Films on the list include Tom McCarthy's "The Visitor", Paolo Barzman's "Emotional Arithmetic" and Hans Weingartner's "Reclaim Your Brain", plus several others that already have domestic distribution. Filippelli said that these are additional screenings beyond the usual number, so no one is being shut out. Her other initiatives include a detailed list of all available rights by territory.
Many buyers are downplaying the list of available titles at Toronto, but some of the same buyers also bemoan the lack of available good titles in advance of this year's Sundance before big checks began flying for foreign films with no stars. "A lot of films that were overpriced at Sundance haven't been released, so a lot of people haven't drunk the Kool-Aid," Red Envelope Entertainment head Bahman Naraghi said.
Related story: Christie's digital gets screen billing
TORONTO -- The Toronto International Film Festival on Wednesday unveiled its most American-friendly lineup in years, capped off with new titles from Renny Harlin, Paul Schrader and Robin Swicord.
Toronto boasts no official competition. But the Hollywood contingent booked for the twice-nightly gala screenings at Roy Thomson Hall looks set to turn the high-profile venue into an industry shindig.
Among the six new gala titles are Harlin's "Cleaner", a Sony Pictures Entertainment thriller starring Samuel L. Jackson as a cop-turned-crime scene cleaner; the Richard Attenborough-directed love story "Closing the Ring", starring Shirley MacLaine, Mischa Barton and Neve Campbell; and Schrader's "The Walker", a ThinkFilm release starring Woody Harrelson and Lauren Bacall that comes to Toronto by way of Berlin, Cannes and Sydney.
Also joining the Roy Thomson Hall party are two Sony Pictures Classics releases: Kenneth Branagh's Michael Caine-Jude Law starrer "Sleuth", which first bowed in Venice, and Swicord's "The Jane Austen Book Club", starring Jimmy Smits, Amy Brenneman and Maria Bello. Also booked for a gala is French director Alain Corneau's "Le Deuxieme Souffle", starring Daniel Auteuil and Monica Bellucci.
Those titles join such earlier Roy Thomson Hall entries as Julie Taymor's "Across the Universe", Woody Allen's "Cassandra's Dream", Tony Gilroy's "Michael Clayton", Gavin Hood's "Rendition", Terry George's "Reservation Road" and Aristomenis Tsirbas' "Terra".
Toronto, which in recent years has stepped up efforts to make its festival more Hollywood friendly, also has included 28 U.S.-produced films in its 50-strong Special Presentations sidebar.
The latest Special Presentations titles include the Michael Moore documentary "Captain Mike Across America", Sidney Lumet's "Before the Devil Knows You're Dead," Melisa Wallack and Bernie Goldmann's "Bill", Gillian Armstrong's "Death Defying Acts" and Jason Reitman's "Juno", the follow-up to "Thank You for Smoking", which was a Toronto festival breakout hit two years ago.
Also joining today are the latest works from Jonathan Demme, Alison Eastwood, Brian De Palma, Thomas McCarthy and Anand Tucker.
Toronto will unspool 352 films between Sept. 6 and 15 -- 261 features and 91 shorts. The lineup includes 101 world premieres and 108 North American premieres, many of which will bow in Venice before jumping the pond to Toronto. In addition, 71 of the films are directorial debuts.
The festival lineup promises a strong French contingent, including a dozen titles arriving in Toronto with U.S. distribution deals in hand.
High-profile French titles looking for U.S. distribution include Amos Gitai's "Disengagement", Claude Chabrol's "La Fille Coupee En Deux", which will bow in Venice, and Eric Rohmer's "Les Amours D'Astreet et De Celadon," another North American premiere by way of Venice.
John Kochman, executive director of Unifrance USA, said the strong French presence in Toronto is due primarily to festival co-directors Piers Handling and Noah Cowan remaining "unreconstructed Francophiles" eager to program French titles in their event.
Other new titles announced Wednesday include Wayne Wang's "The Princess of Nebraska" and "A Thousand Years of Good Prayers," both portraits of Chinese immigrants in the U.S. Wang will bring the two indie titles films to the festival's Masters program.
Toronto added eight more documentaries to its Real to Reel section, including films by Paul Crowder and Murray Lerner, Olga Konskaya and Andrea Nekrasov, Julian Schnabel, Ran Tal, Philippe Kholy and Grant Gee.
In addition, the previously announced "Body of War", co-directed by Ellen Spiro and talk show legend Phil Donahue, will see its premiere accompanied by a live performance by Pearl Jam's Eddie Vedder, who wrote original songs for the Iraq documentary.
The festival has its usual complement of films about war and political protest that, according to festival co-director Noah Cowan, reflect a "seriousness of purpose and a real sense of drive to tell political stories."
"In many ways, the body of films recalls the American independent movie of the 1970s," he added.
American auteur films including Alan Ball's "Nothing Is Private", a drama about sexual politics and bigotry set against the backdrop of the 1991 Gulf War, De Palma's war drama "Redacted" and Sean Penn's "Into the Wild" reflect anti-war "provocation," Cowan said.
Toronto's lineup also includes a surprising number of crime-themed dramas, including Alexi Tan's "Blood Brothers", a drama about three friends taking on a life of big-city crime; Comeau's fugitive drama "Le Deuxieme Souffle"; Lumet's "Before the Devil Knows You're Dead," a thriller about a botched robbery; Brad Furman's "The Take", about the aftermath of an armored car heist; and Ira Sachs' "Married Life", a drama about a husband who kills his wife to spare her the shame of divorce.
Cowan said that the crime-themed movies this year recall the '70s-era vigilante movies that coincided with Vietnam.
"When the U.S. is faced with wars that are frustrating in their inability to be totally understood, that comes out in their films," Toronto's top programr said.
"Just as the 1970s, there's films that reflect paranoia about government and police corruption and which come from a frustration and rage about what's happening in the world," he added.
Other Toronto highlights announced Wednesday include talks by President Carter and his wife, Rosalynn Carter, an update on Bill Maher and Larry Charles' anti-religion documentary and a briefing on the ongoing crisis in Darfur courtesy of International Criminal Court prosecutor Luis Moreno-Ocampo and Don Cheadle.
Toronto is set to open Sept. 6 with Jeremy Podeswa's "Fugitive Pieces" and close 10 days later with another Canadian film, Paolo Barzman's "Emotional Arithmetic".
A complete list of titles screening at Toronto follows:
"Across the Universe", Julie Taymor, U.S.
"L'Age Des Tenebres", Denys Arcand, Canada
"Blood Brothers", Alexi Tan, Taiwan/China/Hong Kong
"Caramel", Nadine Labaki, Lebanon/France
"Cassandra's Dream", Woody Allen, Britain
"Cleaner", Renny Harlin, U.S.
- When your an international film festival showcasing big fall titles and you can close out and open your fest with Canadian films, then you know that the country that usually serves as backdrops for American cities is good at being more than just that. As reported in Screen Daily, Paulo Barzman's Emotional Arithmetic (2007)Emotional Arithmetic
Toronto, which has previously chosen lighter movies, often from major studios, as closing-night films, this year tapped Paolo Barzman's drama about three Holocaust survivors separated by the Nazis reuniting 35 years later on a bucolic Quebec farm.
Rounding out the cast for the Canadian movie is Gabriel Byrne, Roy Dupuis and Max von Sydow.
Emotional Arithmetic was touted as a possible opener for Toronto but was beaten by another homegrown Holocaust-themed movie, Jeremy Podeswa's Fugitive Pieces.
The movie will receive a high-profile gala at Roy Thomson Hall before Toronto's closing-night party Sept. 15.
"We are proud that the festival now opens and closes with vibrant and high-profile Canadian films," festival co-director Noah Cowan said. "The inclusion of this powerful film reflects the robust nature of our industry."
Producing credits on Emotional Arithmetic go to Suzanne Girard of BBR Prods.
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