The 42 nd Toronto film festival was notable for its strong demo of female knack not least an adorable coming-of-age comedy directed by Greta Gerwig
It may not have the glamour and appreciation of moment of Cannes, the romance of Venice or the boutique cliquishness of Telluride, but for sheer magnitude and scope, the Toronto international movie carnival( or Tiff, to give it its perkily approachable abbreviation) is hard to beat. Even having cut its programme by 20% this year( about 60 movies fewer than previous instalments ), Toronto is a monster of an event.
This entails several stuffs. The first, and least welcome, of these is queues. Miles of them, snaking around the streets of the city for impedes and managed by structures that border on the Kafkaesque. Punters join them automatically, sometimes without knowing what they are waiting for. But the queues are there for a reason, which fetches us to the second point: the sheer number of chatter designations. The timing of Toronto and its size means that it is an ideal platform on which to test whether a cachet name has the legs to make it a contender in the gives race.
Early shows suggest that it’s going to be another hard-fought battle in best available actress category, with a opulence of meaty, female-driven legends. And the crowd-pleasing Battle of the Sexes , the most recent from the Little Miss Sunshine steering duo of Valerie Faris and Jonathan Dayton, is top of the list. Starring Emma Stone as tennis player Billie Jean King, the movie tells the story of the much-publicised 1973 tennis coincide between King and ex-champion, and self-proclaimed male-chauvinist pig, Bobby Riggs( Steve Carell, all tragicomic bluster and condescension ). But more than that it’s a love story, in which King, hopelessly smitten with hairdresser Marilyn( Andrea Riseborough ), comes to periods with her own virility. Stone is terrific, leaving King a steely sweetness and a disarming vulnerability. And while some of the overt antediluvian sexism from the commentators described audible gasp from the audience, the themes- equal salary and equal opportunities for women, LGBT acceptance in play- remain depressingly timely.
Another powerhouse female induce comes from Jessica Chastain, playing the eponymous central role in Aaron Sorkin’s directorial entry, Molly’s Game . This is pretty much the archetypal Sorkin project- a slick firework exhibition of showy dialogue and jostling ideas and a central persona with a banter that Chastain wields like a switchblade knife. Based on a real-life persona, Molly is a former Olympic-standard skier turned hostess of unlicensed, high-stakes poker games, who find herself at the center of an FBI investigation. While Sorkin indulges in a few too many self-congratulatory segues and prosper, as long as Chastain is on screen- and she’s rarely off- the movie has a crackling vigor and propulsive drive.