The Toronto International Film Festival Group announced their top ten Canadian features for 2007 last night, along with (for the first time) their top ten list of Canadian short films.
The top ten Canadian features were: L’âge Des Ténèbres (Denys Arcand), Amal (Richie Mehta), Continental, Un Film Sans Fusil (Stéphane Lafleur), Eastern Promises (David Cronenberg), Fugitive Pieces (Jeremy Podeswa) , My Winnipeg (Guy Maddin), A Promise To The Dead: The Exile Journey Of Ariel Dorfman (Peter Raymont), The Tracey Fragments (Bruce McDonald), Up The Yangtze (Yung Chang) and Young People Fucking (Martin Gero).
The top ten Canadian shorts: Code 13 (Mathieu L. Denis), The Colony (Jeff Barnaby), Dust Bowl Ha! Ha! (Sébastien Pilote), Farmer’s Requiem (Ramses Madina), Les Grands (Chloé Leriche), I Have Seen The Future (Cam Christiansen), I Met The Walrus (Josh Raskin), Madame Tutli-Putli (Chris Lavis, Maciek Szczerbowski), Pool (Chris Chong Chan Fui) and Terminus (Trevor Cawood).
We went along to the announcement event, hosted by actors Wendy Crewson and Luke Kirby, and we have to say this: Luke Kirby is the worst presenter of all time. He was so disinterested in what he was reading (or possibly just wilfully unprepared, we can’t say for sure) that it was actually quite rude. Wendy tried hard to be positive in the face of his mumbled introductions, but it didn’t work and set rather a damper on the announcement. For shame, Luke Kirby. Whoever you are.
As usual, Canada’s top ten films were a mix of French Canadian films that you’ll never see outside of French Canada, the films that came out this year from established Canadian directors, and some Canada First! titles, which isn’t, in itself, particularly interesting. The shorts were a little more interesting in their selection—we’re not surprised to see Madame Tutli-Putli, but it’s nice to see Dust Bowl Ha! Ha! get a mention. To be completely honest, the best thing about Canada’s Top Ten is the chance to see all of the films at Cinematheque Ontario in the new year (starting January 25th). You can see all 10 films (including the shorts program) for $65.00 if you purchase your tickets in advance, which is frankly bargainous. And at $8 for a single ticket, can you really make an excuse to not see The Tracey Fragments, still our favourite Canadian film of the year? Yes, you’ll probably be sick of Ellen Page by then (if not by now) thanks to all the Juno hype, but it’s your chance to see her in, you know, a film that’s actually good!