The Best and Worst of The Toronto International Film Festival

Laremy rolls through Toronto in his fly sports car!

I was sitting around the other day, licking my Taco Bell loco taco fingers while thumbing through the “missed connections” portion of the paper when a call came through on the land line. It was Vince, the guy who runs the jam you’re currently reading.

“LEGEL!” he grumbled, his voice still throaty from the scotch and cigar party he’d hosted the night prior.

“Yes, sir?” I said, trying to put my pants back on (for optimal professionalism).

“You were just in Toronto, weren’t cha, kid?”

It was true. I’d hitchhiked to the airport, stowed away in first class, and tipped and sipped my way through the skies. Because I’m a big-time “cream of the crop” critic I was met at the airport by half a dozen ladies, only two of whom were desperately unattractive. After a limo ride into downtown, I was asked to throw out the first pitch for the Orioles-Jays game. Perfect strike. Get drunk, high hat. Then I went to 15 movies in four days, crushing ‘dem reviews like an OG. Then I came home, then I answered the phone, then I used a highly questionable* intro technique to a “Best and Worst of The Toronto Film Festival” column.

*Still, you should be grateful, because the column originally started like this: “The Toronto International Film Festival is a veritable proving ground for potential Best Picture nominees.” Yeeps. That’s terrible.

So here you go, 12 semi-cogent thoughts on TIFF 2012, all for you!

Didn’t Make either List, But Worth Talking About

Cloud Atlas

Best Part
It feels like the sort of film you attempt on a dare, six concurrent plot devices that span around 500 years. As such, you’re going to see the word “ambitious” used about 1000 times in every review of the film.

Worst Part
Like a 5’4″ guy trying to dunk, it’s tough to say if all that effort is going to lead to anything. Yes, they pull off the concurrent storylines, but all of them say the same thing, occasionally back-to-back, with the exact same phrasing. Thus, the films feels repeatedly repetitive (yes, I did that on purpose).

The Master

Best Part
Watching Joaquin Phoenix’s character make moonshine out of household cleaning products. I kept trying to jot down the recipe, if only to avoid potentially blinding my friends.

Worst Part
The realization that Paul Thomas Anderson now has enough cachet that he doesn’t have to care about the audience. Only he’s decided to use this power to make obtuse art-house films.

Around The Web


‘We Went To The Moon In 1969’: How The ‘Even Stevens’ Musical Episode Changed The Disney Channel Forever

M.T. Anderson Correctly Predicted Your ‘Feed’ Back In 2002, Are You Ready To Hear What He Says Is Coming Next?

Kenya’s Massive Ivory Burn Should Light A Fire Under Us All

Returning To The Boston Marathon Offered A Lesson In Facing Fears

Is There More To The Adam Walsh Story?

Stand-Up Comedy Scared The Hell Out Of Me, So I Decided To Give It A Shot

W. Kamau Bell On Joking With The KKK For CNN And Quoting Malcolm X In His New Special

Drifters Take Note: This Couple Has Crucial Advice For Long-Term Travelers

‘Rad’ Star Bill Allen Looks Back On Helltrack And That Iconic BMX Prom Scene, 30 Years Later

Meet Christine Sun Kim — The Sound Artist Who’s Changing The Way We Listen

Presented By
The All-New Prius

Steve-O Talks About Stand-Up, Longing For Attention, And The Voices In His Head

‘Veep’ Creator Armando Iannucci And Timothy Simons Explain Why It’s So Much Fun To Hate Jonah Ryan