Nearly There

And none of them is a zombieToday, the festival really starts to wind down. People are packing up; the talent is leaving; the press screening list is shrinking away into nothing.

Yesterday was insane, though. That social thing I mentioned was just the first one of the night; I ended up scoring a ticket to the Film Italia party, which extended my evening by a couple of wobbly hours.

But really, how could I refuse? They held it in Toronto’s legendary Lower Bay Station!

Oh, and somewhere in there I managed to file a 2800-word wrap piece for Sympatico/MSN, which should go up later today. But for now, you can read my daily Metro capsules … oh, right, and it’s Friday, which means even more movies!

Across the Universe“: Twenty percent of this movie is so good that the other eighty percent just pissed me off. And what the hell is wrong with Bono? He looks like Robin Williams after eating Terry Gilliam! (You can see his character’s look here. Do not have anything in your mouth.)

The Brave One“: As a traumatized victim of urban violence, Jodie Foster gives a terrific performance in a terrible movie. As someone put it — can’t remember who, too tired — this movie desperately wants to have been made twenty-five years ago.

Eastern Promises“: Naomi Watts saves a baby. Viggo Mortensen gets tattoos. Their worlds collide. The audience shrugs. Look, it’s not bad or anything, but it’s Cronenberg’s most disappointing picture since “M. Butterfly”. I blame the script, which needed some more work before going in front of the cameras. On the other hand, that climactic fight scene? Best naked sauna knife fight ever.

The Hunting Party“: In a perfect world, Richard Shepard’s dark comedy would have been a TIFF gala — it’s funny, it’s well made, it’s socially and culturally relevant, and it has movie stars in it. Instead, it’s getting a wide release with minimal support from its studio, which is exactly the same thing that happened to Shepard’s last film, “The Matador”. Dude can’t catch a break.

Mr. Woodcock“: I interviewed Craig Gillespie earlier this week. He’s a nice guy, so I was briefly tempted to go easy on the terrible, terrible movie that bears his name. But I’m also pretty sure this isn’t his cut, and when “Lars and the Real Girl” opens in a couple of months, this terrible, terrible movie can quietly fade from his resume. And the world will be a better place.

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