So, did anyone see the article in today’s Eye about the imminent death of the Festival cinemas? A nice article reminding us that it’ll take someone with a good deal more money than business sense to save the Royal (at a cool $2.7 million) but it more timely in reminding us that while our cinemas might be dying, we at least still have the Toronto International Film Festival Group’s Cinematheque Ontario to keep us in going. It might be in the Jackman Hall at the Art Gallery of Ontario (317 Dundas West), admittedly not the most exciting of venues, but it might soon be one of our only choices to see some rarely shown films on the big screen.
Which is why it’s nice that this month’s programme, starting today, is absolutely fantastic. First of all, there’s a retrospective for Krzysztof Kieślowski. His name is absolute murder to type, but we recommend A Short Film About Love, and his Three Colors series anyway. Then you’ve got exclusive limited runs for films such as Chris Marker’s The Case of the Grinning Cat (reviewed at both Eye and NOW), Žižek, and, who would want to miss this? A new print of David Lynch’s amazing(ly creepy) Blue Velvet.
But best of all is Heroic Grace: The Chinese Martial Arts Film, Part II. If you like kung fu films, particularly those of the Shaw Brothers era, then you have to check out the list. Each film is a classic in it’s own right, from 1971’s The New One-Armed Swordsman to new prints of My Young Auntie and Tsui Hark’s Once Upon a Time in China. Torontoist is frothing with excitement! (And the idea that we’re going to be in Jackman Hall about 10 times in two weeks.)
Of course, this is a drop in the ocean when we consider the amount of quality Kung Fu that has been given to us by Colin Geddes’ Kung Fu Friday over the years. At least it’s reign isn’t over quite yet – Kung Fu Friday is running at least one more time, with Yuen Wo-Ping directing Donnie Yen in Hero Among Heroes, showing tomorrow night. Don’t forget!