Toronto Film Featival Winners and Losers

So after what looks to have been an incredible Toronto Independent Film Festival, it’s time to break down the apparent winners and losers of this prestigious event on the Movie Calendar


La La Land

I trust that because you are reading this blog you have a minor interest in the movie industry. If so, you will have heard the almighty eruption of positivity La La Land has instantly gained. If not, it looks as though it’s my duty to inform you that this film looks awesome! 

Made in the vain of the old school musical romances of the 1950s, La La Land centres around Emma Stone’s Mia and Ryan Gosling’s Sebastian in their effort to make it big in the promised land Hollywood. Expect musical merriment and breathtaking cinematography from what looks like a glorious love letter to the Hollywood of old.  

Currently sat on a very respectable 96% on Rotten Tomatoes, La La Land looks as close to a first round knockout as you could possibly get.


In what seemingly looks to be an Oscar-Winning performance from Natalie Portman, Jackie shows the immediate aftermath of John F. Kennedy’s tragic assassination. 

In a story that still holds a great deal with of weight with audiences today, all of the early reviews say that Portman not only gives the movie’s namesake Jackie Kennedy a high level of respect in her performance, but stands tall in a story that has the potential to lose it’s participants.


The true story of one man’s search for his family after being accidently separated from them many years seems to tick every box when it comes to Oscar Movie potential. However, according to recent comments, there is much more to this film than pandering to the Academy’s tender areas. 

Vanity Fair calls Lion:

A Sturdy, Effective Drama Based on an Incredible True Story

Personally, stories like this intrigue me the most. There appears to be no gimmick or need to rely on well known historical elements, just the very human story of a person’s desire to know where they come from and why they are here.


With a current Rotten Tomatoes score of 100% and sites such as Rolling Stone calling Moonlight a “Masterpiece”, it’s difficult not get slightly excited about watching this film. 

Honestly my knowledge of the story is sadly reduced to only what I can find on Google. Like Lion, Moonlight appears to be a thorough character driven film centred around one young man’s struggles growing up in Miami during what is stated as the “War on Drugs” era. Expect emotion, passion and dedication from all involved in this coming of age drama.



According to a number of reports, during one of the screenings of this graphic horror, audience memebers were seen fainting and vomiting due to the content on display. 

Obviously this wouldn’t be the first something like this has happened, however during a festival that seen by many as a celebration of the independent movie industry, it feels as though this is a shot very wide of the mark. Yes it’s created publicity, but many will be put off from watching something that could potentially force them to reacquainting themselves with that Mega Meat Feast Pizza just eaten.

American Pastoral

There are a number of potential adjectives Ewan McGregor would have hoped to see when presenting his directorial debut of Phillip Roth’s bestselling novel American Pastoral. I can only assume that “Grim”, “Airless” and “Disastrous” were not ones McGregor wanted to see once the curtain fell on his opening effort.

It says a lot when asked by the BBC if McGregor would consider another venture in to directing, he has answered with a resounding no! OK, there are commitment elements that contribute to this decision, however in terms of selling this film to the prospective audience, everyone seems to be getting their excuses in now before the finger pointing begins

One comment

  1. Interesting… I would be keen to watch Jackie. Natalie Portman is totally underrated (loved her since Leon). But with the 100% rating for Moonlight I’ll try to give that material a go as well… Can’t wait!

    Liked by 1 person

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