Toronto film festival

The Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) is generally considered to be one of the five top film festivals in the world. It begins the Thursday night after Labor Day and lasts for ten days. Between 300-400 films are screened at a dozen or so downtown Toronto venues. The Festival features retrospectives of national cinemas and individual directors and also highlights Canadian cinema. In 2004, Perspective Canada, the programme that had focused on Canadian films since 1984, was replaced by two programmes:

Canada First!, a forum for Canadian filmmakers presenting their first feature-length work, featuring eight to 15 films, and Short Cuts Canada, which includes 30-40 Canadian short films. The TIFF Group occasionally polls critics, programmers, and industry professionals, asking them to identify their Top 10 Canadian films. The TIFF Group has conducted three such polls, in 1984, 1993, and 2004.

The TIFF Group also maintains a library of videotapes submitted to the festival and of film materials as part of Cinematheque Ontario (which provides year round screening of classic films). -- [Oct 2004]

Haute Tension (2003) - Alexandre Aja

Switchblade Romance opens with a series of vicious cuts between two plotlines that are destined to collide. A rusted delivery van barrels through cornfields under the moonlight; meanwhile, Alex has brought her friend Marie to spend the weekend at her parents’ country farmhouse to escape the hectic pace of Paris. Behind the van’s wheel, the brutish driver caresses ripped photos of young women; as they get ready to bed down for the night, girlish gossip reveals the differences between the two friends’ likes and dislikes in boyfriends. As the girls close their eyes, an intruder is about to turn their innocent dreams into a relentless and bloody nightmare.

Switchblade Romance is not pretty Philippe Nahon, the disturbed butcher from Gaspar Noé’s Seul contre tous, rips through the screen as the hulking serial murderer, while the fresh-faced Cécile de France and Le Besco work against the “helpless” stereotype often found in the genre. Step aside, squeamish world cinema enthusiasts: Switchblade Romance will drag your beating heart by its singed nerve endings, and prove one of the most brutal horror films of the new century.” – Colin Geddes, Toronto Film Festival

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