‘Haunting In Venice’, ‘Dumb Money’, ‘Boy & The Heron’ – Deadline

UPDATED with latest: The Toronto Film Festival began September 7 in Ontario with opening-night movie The Boy and the Heron, from Oscar-winning filmmaker Hayao Miyazaki. It kicks off a lineup for the fest’s 48th edition that includes world premieres of GameStop pic Dumb Money, Netflix’s Pain Hustlers, Taika Waititi’s Next Goal Wins, Kristin Scott Thomas’ Scarlett Johansson pic North Star, Chris Pine’s Poolman, Michael Keaton-directed Knox Goes Away, Anna Kendrick’s Woman of the Hour, Atom Egoyan’s Seven Veils, Michael Winterbottom’s Shoshana, Grant Singer’s Reptile, Viggo Mortensen’s The Dead Don’t Hurt, Lee Tamahori’s The Convert and Alex Gibney’s doc In Restless Dreams: The Music of Paul Simon.

The fest also features new films from such celebrated directors as Alexander Payne, Kore-eda Hirokazu, Alice Rohrwacher and Richard Linklater.

Deadline is on the ground to watch all the key films. Below is a compilation of our reviews from the fest, which last year awarded Steven Spielberg’s The Fabelmans its People’s Choice Award for best film.

Click on the film titles below to read the reviews in full, and keep checking back as we add more movies throughout the fest, which runs through September 17.

'Aggro Dr1ft'

‘Aggro Dr1ft’


Section: Midnight Madness
Director: Harmony Korine
Cast: Jordi Molla, Travis Scott
Deadline’s takeaway: For those who want to see an artist thinking out loud, it’s rare to see something so pure and aesthetically relentless, with no other intention than to get inside your head. If you let it in, it will be there forever and ever, for better or for worse.

American Fiction

Orion Pictures/T-Street

Section: Special Presentations
Director: Cord Jefferson
Cast: Jeffrey Wright, Tracee Ellis Ross, John Ortiz, Erika Alexander, Leslie Uggams, Adam Brody, Keith David, Issa Rae, Sterling K. Brown
Deadline’s takeaway: Perhaps the most impactful message American Fiction delivers is about personal agency in a world that often seeks to define the stories of others. The media’s myopic view of Black lives might never shift, but individuals have the power to set their own narratives and boundaries. 

Courtesy of TIFF

Section: Gala Presentations
Director: Hayao Miyazaki
Cast: Soma Santoki, Masaki Suda, Takuya Kimura
Deadline’s takeaway: The Boy and the Heron deals with complex themes that manifest with visual splendor. While it might not be Studio Ghibli’s strongest outing, it’s still an important one, and Miyazaki’s return after a decade-long hiatus serves as a reminder of the unique vision and artistry he brings to the world of animation.

Bill Skarsgård in 'Boy Kills World'

Courtesy of TIFF

Section: Midnight Madness
Director: Moritz Mohr
Cast: Bill Skarsgard, Famke Janssen, Yayan Ruhian, Sharlto Copley, Andrew Koji, Brett Gelman, and Jessica Rothe
Deadline’s takeaway: Boy Kills World jumps back and forth between exciting and confusing. For all of its narrative issues, it remains a vivid spectacle that revels in its genre-blending chaos. In the vast world of action cinema, this is an uneven ride mostly works if you move past its inconsistencies.

'The Burial' movie

Prime Video

Section: Special Presentations
Director: Maggie Betts
Cast: Tommy Lee Jones, Jamie Foxx, Jurnee Smollett, Mamoudou Athie, Pamela Reed, Bill Camp, Alan Ruck, Amanda Warren
Deadline’s takeaway: Maggie Betts and co-writer Doug Wright have found just the right tone, veering from comic at points to a emotionally satisfying David vs Goliath Deep South tale that speaks directly to faith, our common connections, and a belief in doing the right thing no matter what the risk might be.

Ian McKellen and Gemma Arterton in The Critic


Section: Gala Presentations
Director: Anand Tucker
Cast: Ian McKellen, Gemma Arterton, Mark Strong, Ben Barnes, Alfred Enoch, Romola Garai, Lesley Manville
Deadline’s takeaway: Most of the characters fail to truly engage one’s interest, and the scary politics of the period are largely slighted. It all just leaves you wishing that you could just return to the theater with Ian McKellen, who is terribly underused here, and bask in his unfiltered views on everything.

'The Dead Don't Hurt' review

Hanway Films

Section: World Premiere
Director: Viggo Mortensen
Cast: Vicky Krieps, Viggo Mortensen, Solly McLeod, Garrett Dillahunt, Danny Huston, Ray McKinnon, Colin Morgan, W. Earl Brown, Atlas Green
Deadline’s takeaway: Mortensen has placed his story squarely in the western genre, but you really could lift it out and put it in many different settings and still have the same very human character study that stays with you long after credits roll. John Ford and Howard Hawks would love this movie.

Section: Midnight Madness
Director: Larry Charles
Cast: Megan Mullally, Megan Thee Stallion, Bowen Yang, Nathan Lane, Aaron Jackson, Josh Sharp
Deadline’s takeaway: As a viewer, I often wondered how the hell this got turned into the movie because it is so outrageous. Thankfully, it succeeds at being fun and funny because anything less would have amounted to torture.

Nicolas Cage in Dream Scenario

Nicolas Cage in Kristoffer Borgli’s ‘Dream Scenario’


Section: Platform
Director: Kristoffer Borgli
Cast: Nicolas Cage, Julianne Nicholson, Lily Bird, Jessica Clement, Tim Meadows, Michael Cera, Kate Berlant, Dylan Gelula, Cara Volchoff, Noah Centineo, Nicholas Braun, Dylan Baker
Deadline’s takeaway: Comedy has been an endangered species in Hollywood of late, but if Dream Scenario is any indication, it could come back with a vengeance if the right talents got their shot. Borgli is certainly one of them.

Dumb Money trailer

Sony Pictures

Section: Gala Presentations
Director: Craig Gillespie
Cast: Paul Dano, Seth Rogen, Pete Davidson, Shailene Woodley, Vincent D’Onofrio, America Ferrera, Nick Offerman, Anthony Ramos, Sebastian Stan
Deadline’s takeaway: This isn’t some cheap, ripped-from-the-headlines quickie but a top-quality film that its major studio is planning a large awards season campaign around. It deserves that consideration. And the casting could not be better. 

Jodie Comer in 'The End We Start From'


Section: Gala Presentations
Director: Mahalia Belo
Cast: Jodie Comer, Joel Fry, Mark Strong, Nina Sosanya, Gina McKee, Katherine Waterston, Benedict Cumberbatch
Deadline’s takeaway: The overall mood is somber, and it’s gnomic at almost every turn. Roland Emmerich can sleep easy, but there are few disaster movies that get under your skin by being as strange, creative and imaginative as this.



Section: Gala Presentations
Director: Brian Helgeland
Cast: Ben Foster, Toby Wallace, Jenna Ortega, Tommy Lee Jones, Ismael Cruz Cordova, Aaron Stanford, Scotty Tovar, Tim Daly, Lolita Davidovich, Clayne Crawford
Deadline’s takeaway: For an hour, Finestkind is the kind of movie they don’t make anymore, and just when you’re starting to adapt to its gentle, circadian rhythms (which is about halfway through), it becomes the kind of movie they make all the time. 

Jessie Buckley and Riz Ahmed in Fingernails movie

Jessie Buckley and Riz Ahmed in ‘Fingernails’


Section: Special Presentations
Director: Christos Nikou
Cast: Jessie Buckley, Riz Ahmed, Jeremy Allen White, Annie Murphy, Luke Wilson
Deadline’s takeaway: The director has obvious gifts that we’ve seen before and which surface momentarily even in this miscalculation. Still, why he chose this off-putting material for his American debut, especially with its grotesque climax, is a real head-scratcher.

Gonzo Girl movie

Bobby Bukowski

Section: Discovery
Director: Patricia Arquette
Cast: Willem Dafoe, Camila Morrone, Patricia Arquette, Elizabeth Lail, Ray Nicholson, Leila George, James Urbaniak
Deadline’s takeaway: Although set in 1992, Arquette’s vision seems more in line with the ’70s style of filmmaking, particularly Robert Altman. Though not always hitting the bull’s-eye here she certainly comes close enough to signal a new career behind the camera.

'Hell of a Summer' Review

Toronto Film Festival

Section: Midnight Madness
Director: Finn Wolfhard, Billy Bryk
Cast: Fred Hechinger, Abby Quinn, Billy Bryk, Finn Wolfhard, Pardis Saremi, D’Pharaoh Woon-A-Tai, Rosebud Baker, Adam Pally, Krista Nazaire, Matthew Finlan, Julia Lalonde, Daniel Gravelle, Julia Doyle, Susan Coyne
Deadline’s takeaway: With a cast that shines and two budding directors showcasing immense promise, this is one flick that’s bound to leave the audience with a smile on their face and a knife in their back. 

The cast of His Three Daughters which had world premiere at Toronto Film Festival

Sam Levy

Section: Special Presentations
Director: Azazel Jacobs
Cast: Carrie Coon, Elizabeth Olsen, Natasha Lyonne, Jay O. Sanders, Jovan Adepo
Deadline’s takeaway: What makes this worthwhile, if not as engaging of other Azazel Jacobs films, are the performances of three superb actors who get to sink their teeth into dialogue-heavy roles, each emerging with a distinct and recognizable character.

Michael Keaton plays a contract killer with dementia in Knox Goes Away


Section: Special Presentations
Director: Michael Keaton
Cast: Michael Keaton, Al Pacino, James Marsden, Marcia Gay Harden, Suzy Nakamura, Joanna Kulig, Ray McKinnon, Lela Loren, John Hoogenakker
Deadline’s takeaway: This is the kind of absorbing, old-fashioned, solidly crafted and immersive dramatic thriller that you might have seen Bogart or Mitchum do in their later years. It is easy to see not only what attracted Keaton to the role but also why he might want to take creative charge.

Toronto FIlm Festival

Toronto Film Festival

Section: Centerpiece
Director: Monica Sorelle
Cast: Atibon Nazaire, Sheila Anozier, Chris Renois
Deadline’s takeaway: Although there are conflicts in the film, Mountains is not heavily plot-driven. It takes its time and presents these lives in vignettes against a backdrop that subtly shows the life they have known in America, and how the dreams that got them here from a home country full of tragedy are slowly fading away thanks to what some call “progress.”

'Mother, Couch' review


Section: Special Presentations
Director: Niclas Larsson
Cast: Ewan McGregor, Ellen Burstyn, Rhys Ifans, Lara Flynn Boyle, Taylor Russell, F. Murray Abraham, Lake Bell
Deadline’s takeaway: Ellen Burstyn’s performance is worth the price of admission. This 90-year-old acting treasure gets a very strange role to sink her teeth into and goes for the jugular. Sensational.

The Movie Teller with Berenice Bejo and Antonio De La Torre at Toronto Film Festival

Embankment Films

Section: Special Presentations
Director: Lone Scherfig
Cast: Bérénice Bejo, Antonio De La Torre, Daniel Brühl, Sara Becker, Alondra Valenzuela, Pablo Schwarz, Joaquin Guzman, Francisco Diaz, Alfred Borner, Max Salgado, Santiago Urbina, Elian Ponce, Beltran Izquierdo, Simon Beltran
Deadline’s takeaway: The Movie Teller gets its power from the movies of the time, yes, but also what cinema and story mean to us and our memories.

Section: Special Presentations
Director: Taika Waititi
Cast: Michael Fassbender, Oscar Knightley, Kaimana, Will Arnett, Elisabeth Moss, Uli Latukefu, David Fane, Rachel House, Beulah Koale
Deadline’s takeaway: Ultimately, this is a film pretty true to the documentary but one Taika Waititi has infused with so much heart and his quirky sense of humor that it stands as a nice original on its own.


Section: Special Presentations
Director: Kristin Scott Thomas
Cast: Kristin Scott Thomas, Scarlett Johansson, Sienna Miller, Emily Beecham, Thibault De Montalembert, Freida Pinto, Joshua Maguire, James Fleet
Deadline’s takeaway: This is not a broad comedy in any sense: Thomas is a fan of French movies, Woody Allen’s Hannah and Her Sisters, Little Miss Sunshine, Marriage Story and others that are smart examples of the genre.

Section: Special Presentations
Director: David Yates
Cast: Emily Blunt, Chris Evans, Andy Garcia, Catherine O’Hara, Chloe Coleman, Jay Duplass, Brian D’Arcy James, Amit Shah, Aubrey Dollar, Willie Raysor
Deadline’s takeaway: Yates keeps this thing humming along but doesn’t take his eye off the message: beware, consumers, because there is no such thing as an instant cure even if your doctor writes you the prescription for it.

Section: Special Presentations
Director: Jessica Yu
Cast: Sandra Oh, Awkwafina, Will Ferrell, Holland Taylor and Jason Schwartzman
Deadline’s takeaway: Quiz Lady is a mixed bag, attempting to balance lots of themes, from family bonds to the nuances of Asian American culture. It serves as a reminder that even in tales that tread familiar ground, there are always elements that resonate and connect to the viewer. 

Julia Garner and Jessica Henwick, in Kitty Green's 'The Royal Hotel'


Section: Gala Presentations
Director: Kitty Green
Cast: Julia Garner, Jessica Henwick, Hugo Weaving, Toby Wallace, James Frecheville, Daniel Henshall, Ursula Yovich
Deadline’s takeaway: There is no doubt that Kitty Green is becoming an important feminist voice in the movie business, but it’s nice that this isn’t a one-sided “I hate all men” diatribe. It also tries to show, at least a bit, that some guys can be human despite their worst moments.

'Sing Sing' review


Section: Special Presentations
Director: Greg Kwedar
Cast: Colman Domingo, Paul Raci, John Divine G Whitfield, Sean San Jose, Jon-Adrian Velazquez, David J. Giraudy, Sean “Dino” Johnson, Sean “Divine Eye” Johnson, Clarence “Divine Eye” Maclin
Deadline’s takeaway: There’s a sense that somewhere within its duration, there exists a tighter, more concise 85-minute narrative. But the film leaves its audience with a resonating thought: that behind every prison number, there exists a human, yearning for acceptance, understanding and a chance to rewrite their story.

‘Wicked Little Letters’


Section: Special Presentations
Director: Thea Sharrock
Cast: Olivia Colman, Jessie Buckley, Anjana Vasan
Deadline’s takeaway: Plot is not the be-all and end-all here; the best thing about Sharrock’s film is not just Jonny Sweet’s deliciously profane script, it’s the fun that the cast has with it. There’s so much joy in the pigswill of the English language that these increasingly bizarre letters become characters in their own right. 


Section: Special Presentations
Director: Anna Kendrick
Cast: Anna Kendrick, Kathryn Gallagher, Nicolette Robinson, Kelley Jakie, Autumn Best, Pete Holmes, Tony Hale, Daniel Zovatto
Deadline’s takeaway: ABC’s 20/20 devoted a full hour to the story of the cold-blooded killer who died in prison, but Kendrick’s directorial debut has more on its mind that just the facts.

Source link

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button