Demolition Opens Toronto Film Festival


DEMOLITION directed by Jean-Marc Vallée and starring Jake Gyllenhaal was scheduled to be released in April of 2016, but it will now be opening the 2015 Toronto Film Fest. Was the poor reception to SOUTHPAW a reason for the change? Gyllenhaal has pretty much been knocked out of the best actor race for SOUTHPAW. DEMOLITION may be the backup plan to keep him in the race. 

DEMOLITION is about a successful investment banker, struggles after losing his wife in a tragic car crash. Despite pressure from his father in law Phil to pull it together, Davis continues to unravel. What starts as a complaint letter to a vending machine company turns into a series of letters revealing startling personal admissions. Davis’ letters catch the attention of customer service rep Karen and, amidst emotional and financial burdens of her own, the two form an unlikely connection. With the help of Karen and her son Chris, Davis starts to rebuild, beginning with the demolition of the life he once knew.

The 40th Toronto international film festival  runs from September 10th-20th.  

Full lineup is below with potential Oscar contenders highlighted. All subject to change once they have been screened for the Toronto audience.

World premieres
Beeba Boys – Deepa Mehta, Canada

Forsaken – Jon Cassar, Canada

Freeheld – Peter Sollett, USA

Hyena Road (Hyena Road: Le Chemin du Combat) – Paul Gross, Canada

Lolo – Julie Delpy, France

The Man Who Knew Infinity – Matt Brown, UK

The Martian – Ridley Scott, USA

The Program – Stephen Frears, UK

Septembers of Shiraz – Wayne Blair, USA

Stonewall – Roland Emmerich, USA

The Dressmaker – Jocelyn Moorhouse, Australia

Colonia – Florian Gallenberger, Germany/Luxembourg/France 

Desierto – Jonás Cuarón, Mexico

Families (Belles Familles) – Jean-Paul Rappeneau, France

Guilty (Talvar) – Meghna Gulzar, India 

The Idol (Ya Tayr El Tayer) – Hany Abu-Assad, UK/Palestine

The Lady in the Van – Nicolas Hytner, USA

Maggie’s Plan – Rebecca Miller, USA

Parched – Leena Yadav, India/USA

Sunset Song – Terence Davies, UK/Luxembourg

Trumbo – Jay Roach, USA

Un plus une – Claude Lelouch, France

Where To Invade Next – Michael Moore, USA

Demolition – Jean-Marc Vallée, USA

International premieres
Legend – Brian Helgeland, UK

North American premieres
Remember – Atom Egoyan, Canada

The Danish Girl – Tom Hooper, UK/Sweden

The Daughter – Simon Stone, Australia

Dheepan – Jacques Audiard, France

Len and Company – Tim Godsall, USA

The Lobster – Yorgos Lanthimos, Ireland/UK/Greece/France/Netherlands

Louder than Bombs – Joachim Trier, Norway/France/Denmark

Mountains May Depart (Shan He Gu Ren) – Jia Zhang-ke, China/France/Japan

Sicario – Denis Villeneuve, USA

Youth – Paolo Sorrentino, Italy/France/UK/Switzerland

Canadian premieres
Anomalisa – Charlie Kaufman, Duke Johnson, USA

Beasts of No Nation – Cary Fukunaga, Ghana

Black Mass – Scott Cooper, USA

Brooklyn – John Crowley, UK/Ireland/Canada

Room – Lenny Abrahamson, Ireland/Canada

Son of Saul (Saul Fia) – László Nemes, Hungary

Spotlight – Tom McCarthy, USA

Victoria – Sebastian Schipper, Germany

JOY Trailer

Here we go again. Another Oscar race with Director David O’Russell directing Jennifer Lawrence and Bradley Cooper and Robert Dinero, Apparently they are the only actors that can win him awards, so why change what works? If you think SILVER LININGS PLAYBOOK and AMERICAN HUSTLE worked. Both are the worst movies to ever be considered for best picture.

According to Variety, The movie follows a family across four generations, focusing on the real-life rags-to-riches story of Joy Mangano, a single mother of three who overcomes insurmountable obstacles to become the founder of a billion-dollar family empire after inventing the Miracle Mop. Cooper plays an executive at the Home Shopping Network who helps sell her product.

I indirectly worked with Joy Mangano when she first began selling the Miracle Mop on QVC. She did not start at the Home Shopping Network as mentioned by Variety. There is a quick shot of a QVC set mock up in the trailer.

The movie looks halfway decent, maybe because of my own personal interest. Some already have JOY predicted as best picture nominee, Jennifer Lawrence for best actress and Bradley Cooper for supporting.

JOY opens Christmas Day.

Will Leonardo DiCaprio Finally Win an Oscar?

This will be the million dollar question throughout the upcoming Oscar season. Most agree that Leonardo DiCaprio is long over due for an Oscar win. He has been nominated 5 times.

1993– Best supporting actor- WHAT’S EATING GILBERT GRAPE. (Tommy Lee Jones won for THE FUGITIVE)

2004– Best actor nomination- THE AVIATOR (Jamie Fox won for RAY)

2006 -Best actor nomination – BLOOD DIAMOND (Forest Whitaker won for LAST MAN IN SCOTLAND)

2013 – Best Actor – THE WOLF OF WALL STREET (Matthew Mcconaughy won for DALLAS BUYERS CLUB)

There are several Tumblr pages dedicated to his plight :
Poor Leo Tumblr Page
Leonardo Oscar

This year DiCaprio tries again in THE REVENANT.  Alejandro González Iñárritu’s follow-up to BIRDMAN, last years best picture winner.

Based on the novel by Michael Punke, THE REVENANT is based on true story.  DiCaprio plays Hugh Glass, a fur trapper who is injured in a fight with a bear. His colleague John Fitzgerald played Tom Hardy robs him and leaves him for dead, but Glass survives and promises revenge on Fitzgerald.

The trailer was released this week, officially kicking off his Oscar campaign.

Halfway to Oscars

We are just about half way through the year.  The real Oscar race doesn’t begin to take shape until September/October.   We to don’t really know anything until the Telluride and Toronto Film Festivals. Oscar bloggers speculate all year long. So let us speculate about Oscar contenders that were seen the first half of the year. I use the word “seen” because the Cannes films have not yet been released.


INSIDE OUT: The best reviewed movie of the year so far with 98% on Rotten Tomatoes and 93 on Metacritic add the Pixar factor and you have this best animated feature nominee and the likely winner. INSIDE OUT is the closest we have to a sure thing right now.


MAD MAX: FURY ROAD-One of the best reviewed movies of the year so far with 98% on Rotten Tomatoes. Some say that it will get a Best Picture nomination, but that is bit ambistious this early on.


JURASSIC WORLD-If the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences wants to stay relevant and increase the ratings of the Oscar ceremony, they need to acknowledge the box office success of JURASSIC PARK. Even if only through best visual effects. At almost $400 million so far domestically and close to $1 billion worldwide it will soon take over as the highest money maker of the year over AVENGERS:AGE OF ULTRON.


CAROL: Big hit out of Cannes.  The Weinstein Company is setting CAROL up to be a major player this season. Best Picture will be a difficult battle,but Cate Blanchett and Rooney Mara will be competing for best actress nominations.


SON OF SAUL: Took home the Grand Prix award at Cannes. Just this week, Hungary was the first country to announce its official entry into the best foreign language film category for an Academy Award. This Holocaust story is sure to be recognized throughout awards season.

Oscar Contenders From Cannes 2015

The Cannes Film Festival rarely influences the Oscar race. It does however give us a few movies to start the Oscar conversation. The movies with the most potential coming out of Cannes are:


CAROL-Directed by Todd Haynes and stars Cate Blanchett and Rooney Mara (best actress winner in Cannes). Carol is set in 1950s New York, a department-store clerk who dreams of a better life falls for an older, married woman. Some alreaar. dy calling Mara to get the Best Actress nomination and possibly the win. It’s way too to early to start calling winners, but nineteen Best Actress winners from Cannes went on to get Oscar nominations. (4 have won).


SON OF SAUL-(Hungary)-In the horror of 1944 Auschwitz, a prisoner forced to burn the corpses of his own people finds moral survival upon trying to salvage from the flames the body of a boy he takes for his son. No way to tell if Son of Saul will be submitted or qualify for Best Foreign Language Film, but many predicted it to win the top prize, the Palme d’Or. Instead it took the runner up Grand Prize award. Holocaust movies tend to do well in the Foreign Language category.


INSIDE OUT- This years Pixar movie. After a girl moves to a new home, her emotions are plunged into chaos as they compete for control of her mind. With strong reviews out of Cannes and the history Pixar has with Best Animated Feature wins, this is the only shoe in for a nomination so far.