The Festival of Festivals does the time warp on its first day.
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Local cinephiles and faithful travellers: commence your queueing! The 37th edition of the Toronto International Film Festival kicks off today with a comparatively sparse but impressive lineup. The hottest ticket item is probably Rian Johnson’s time-jumping Looper (). The sci-fi noir stars Joseph Gordon-Levitt as a hitman tasked with offing his future self (Bruce Willis). Looper has the rare distinction of being a festival opener that’s from outside of Canada—not to mention one people are actually looking forward to seeing. (Need we bring up Score: A Hockey Musical?)
TIFF has always been good at balancing their opening night heavy-hitters with free selections from the vault and highly anticipated international programming, and this year is no different. The first screening this year, on that note, isn’t Looper but Chris Marker’s excellent Sans Soleil (), presented for free in memory (or “immemory,” to borrow Marker’s term) of the recently departed auteur. Also for gratis, you can take in a new digital restoration of Roman Polanski’s Tess () this afternoon, introduced by Adam Nayman, film critic for Cinema Scope and the Grid.
Those seeking newer fare would do well to check out the first screening in the excellent Wavelengths programme, Miguel Gomes’ Tabu (), a stylistically bold love letter to the cinema and an all-around beautiful affair. In its playful riffs on memory and time—apparently a big theme today—it makes a good companion piece for Peter Mettler’s fascinating and visually striking new documentary The End of Time (). Go forth and screen things!