TIFF 2009: Preliminaries, Part 2

Here’s my next batch of TIFF hopefuls. I’ll be narrowing it all down to somewhere around ten films in total, but this at least reminds me what films are on my radar for follow-up should I not be able to see them all (and who could?):

Air Doll (Kûki ningyô)

Air Doll (Kûki ningyô) (Director: Hirokazu Kore-eda): Kore-eda is well-known as the director of previous TIFF standouts like Still Walking (2008) and Nobody Knows (2004), but to be honest, it’s Korean actress Bae Doo-na that makes me want to see this. I’ve loved her work in films like Linda Linda Linda (review) and The Host (review). The pairing of director and actress is promising enough on its own, but the story, about a “love doll” who comes to life, makes this one irresistible.

Official site of the film (Japanese)



Gigante (Director: Adrian Biniez): I admit that I have a soft spot for small, often-overlooked countries. My wife and I visited Uruguay in 2005 and were captivated by its charm. As a small country between two powerful neighbours (Brazil and Argentina), Uruguay has developed an interesting sense of humour that reminds me very much of our Canadian one. Gigante is a love story about a store security guard who falls in love with a cleaning lady via security camera.

Note: Continuing their winning run lately, US distributor/film club Film Movement have already picked this up for American distribution.


Police, Adjective

Police, Adjective (Director: Corneliu Poromboiu): From the director of 12:08 East of Bucharest, this one looks to be a talky meditation on the law. A policeman refuses to arrest a young man for offering drugs to his friends, and becomes embroiled in a struggle with his superior over the meaning of words such as “conscience,” “law,” and “moral.” Sounds a bit dull on paper but has the potential for some intellectually stimulating humour. (The embedded trailer below isn’t subtitled, so it’s hard to know, but the reviews from Cannes have been good.)

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